Peak(s):  Mt. Cameron  -  14,248 feet
Date Posted:  03/16/2015
Modified:  03/19/2015
Date Climbed:   03/15/2015
Author:  SchralpTheGnar
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 Cameron Solo Winter Ski Descent   

Solo winter ski descents of 14ers are one of the more difficult 14er achievements, brutal cold, high winds and a notoriously sketchy snowpack all contribute to making this one of the more elusive 14er goals. This is especially true in the Mosquito Range where the winds are fierce and the snow sparse. Then there was yesterday, no wind, 50 degrees at 12k and skinning to the summit of Cameron in a t-shirt. The cool thing is that it is still technically a solo winter ski descent; hence, the attention grabbing report title.

The other impetus for posting this TR is to give some props for Cameron as a worthy ski goal in and of itself. The route up Cameron amphitheater has manageable avalanche territory, a high trailhead, a straight forward route and provides a nice early spring season shake down for the high peak ski mountaineering season. So I thought I'd provide a few beta pics of the route as well as some of the surrounding peaks as a public service.

The winter trailhead seems to be a plowed out section of road about 1/4 mile below, there is room for 3 or 4 cars and no one seemed to mind. Walk up the road and then find the 4wd road through the private property.


Weave through the trees and follow the 4wd road for the most part up the valley keeping Cameron right ahead of you.


You can either follow the valley all the way to the lake and then just climb to the saddle from there, or you can leave the 4wd road at some point and start a rising traverse. I did the latter and it wasn't too bad but I think the former might be better just for less sidehill traversing, wish I had my ski crampons. Here's where I left the 4wd road and started the traverse.


Sick bootpack with the 4wd road in the distance below.


Sunning the skins for a while, looking towards Silverheels.


Roughly the route up and down.


I made it to the summit around 11:15, about 4 hours after leaving the car. Here's some pics from the summit of the surrounding peaks for beta.

West towards the Elks


Democrat North Face


Me and Lincoln


Bross looking lean


Unknown peak and possible wormhole


I polled off the summit around 11:30 and pretty much followed the line of ascent on the way back. The snow was a little punchy and variable from the recent snows so I kept things nice and safe. Did get to make a few turns.


Summit video showing some of the surrounding peaks with golf channelesque commentary.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WI-1GT3suD4&list=UU2ICDaO_qR-pkD8T4OYy5Lw

Arrived back at the car around 12:30, 5 hours after setting out, not too bad for my first day out this year. Hopefully these warm temps end soon and we can have a long and prosperous spring ski season.



Comments or Questions
BillMiddlebrook
User
Cameron
03/16/2015 19:28
Good job getting this beast! And solo? Unreal

I thought of you yesterday on our approach to Democrat when I saw the south face was in on Cameron. There’s a nice, steep coulor on the looker–left of the south face and right now there appears to be continuous snow from the summit area all the way into the couloir, which is definitely in.


adamjm
User
Thanks for the tracks
03/16/2015 20:54
We saw you on the way up and most of the top half of your quick descent. Nice job. Followed a good chunk of your route down (and then over Crest Dr.) from the Bross saddle in order to avoid going back over Lincoln. So, thanks for the tracks!


starsstuff
User
missed it!
03/17/2015 04:44
Saw you head up, but darn, missed your descent while we were summiting Lincoln or heading over to Cameron. Congrats! It was an awesome day to be out there.



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