Mount Elbert Summit Log (#22195)
- Signed By: R.W. (Bob) Schwaninger
- Date Submitted: July 20, 2011
- Date(s) climbed: 07/05/2011
- Number of People Encountered: 11-25 people
- Recommend to a Friend: Neutral
At 14,433', I rate this climb as "difficult". You had better be in shape. At 60-years of age, I was obviously the oldest climber that day.
There is one set of "switch-backs" and that is at the beginning of the trail for about one mile. The first two miles are relatively easy climbing.
Once you emerge from the "timber line", it starts to become much more difficult with the final half-mile being a vertical incline between 50 and 70% with loose rock and gravel.
If you think the climb up might be hard, the climb down is worse. Slipping and sliding with occasional falls for the first mile down. It wore the skin off the top of my toes as my boots dug in forward to ease the slipping and sliding.
If ascending from the Elbert Creek trailhead, the distance is 9-miles round-trip. It took this old man 12-hours to complete the journey, about 6-hours up and 6-hours down. But if you're a younger climber, you can probably make the round-trip in six to eight hours, depending on your pace.