Peak(s):  Mt. Princeton  -  14,197 feet
Date Posted:  06/23/2019
Date Climbed:   06/20/2019
Author:  earlya13
 Last day of spring summit   

We arrived at the 4WD trailhead around 5:30am and started our ascent up the mountain around 5:45am. Past reports are correct that having a high clearance 4WD vehicle is definitely a benefit. Based on the condition of the road and the different variations in it I’m not sure you’d be able to get up there any other way then to walk from the lower trail head. The road itself is clear of snow and we parked just above the radio towers.

The road up to the turn off to the “stairs” section of the trail is fairly clear of snow except one big corner of the road that we chose to cut and scramble up the side of the hill to where the road switched back too. There were a few other small areas of snow to navigate but nothing big that you couldn’t cross in a few steps.

At 11,800ft where you are directed in the route to turn to head to the stairs there is a small log across the road as a marker for the turn. It’s hard to tell from the road where the turn actually is otherwise with all of the footprints going everywhere as a lot of it is covered in snow. After the log there is a large area of the road that is covered in snow... do yourself a favor and remember to turn here and save yourself the extra snow traversing.

Once on the stairs portion of the trail you don’t have to worry about snow until you get around to the north side of Trigger. We opted to take the advice of others and summit Trigger first and cross the ridge over to Princeton. Once on the ridge it was pretty easy going until the final push to the summit. The majority of the ridge is snow free so all you have to contend with is loose rock and dirt.

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Near the summit we battle the winds which were crazy and we were thankful for the “wind shelters” on the summit. The views are still amazing and a lot of the mountains still have a decent amount of snow.

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The decent down to the saddle of the ridge was pretty unremarkable outside of the standard loose rock and dirt which is to be expected. We chose to descend the from the ridge via the old trail as it was a more gradual line of attack to get back down to the trail below Trigger’s summit.

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We were able to avoid crossing all but 2 of the snow fields by either staying above or below. The fields we did cross we used our axes and spikes for to help prevent sliding as the grade is fairly steep and I can only imagine how fast one could get going on the snow.

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Once back down to the “flatter” part of the trail the descent was fairly quick as we were able to pick up the pace.

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We weren’t in a rush so our total RT time was just under 9 hours... spent a lot of time taking pics and admiring the view so judging total trip time by our endeavor may not be the most accurate representation.

equipment we used: microspikes, trekking poles, ice axe ... no snowshoes needed!!!

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
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Comments or Questions
Fantastic pictures
08/11/2019 03:54
Nice pics 👍

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