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Old 12-28-2016, 10:06 AM   #1
tenderfoot
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1st Winter peak off of AMR?

We've done a peak in Nov and one in Apr - looking to try our hand at a winter peak. I am thinking something off of AMR's Lake Road since it will provide a stretch of relatively easier miles. Possibly Sawteeth or Dial & Nippletop?

Would welcome advise. Thinking Jan 2, staying over evening before at Loj campground (feel free to offer better options from Loj, although we are kind of saving Wright for warmer temps when we can make a go at Iroquois too).

Bringing spikes & snowshoes plus the usual necessities.
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Old 12-28-2016, 11:10 AM   #2
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Depends on if you want a longer or a shorter day

Nippletop and Dial will get you the longest day as would Colvin and Blake off the same approach. Sawteeth the least time commitment.

From the Loj loation consider Phelps, or Tabletop, or Colden with Phelps being the least distance and time.

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Old 12-28-2016, 09:08 PM   #3
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Maybe a trip up to Indian Head and grab Colvin?
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Old 12-29-2016, 11:38 AM   #4
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Have done Phelps but that means Table Top or even Colden would have us on trails we have used before. Not looking for a long day - Sawteeth may foot the bill. Street & Nye are short, close to Loj but may not be as easy to follow trail.

As a rookie hiker I am seeing Sawteeth as a looong walk on Lake road followed by the trail. If we are having equipment or weather issues the hike out may be loooong but is on an easy to follow road/trail with little in the way of pesky turns to miss, markers to find, etc.
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Old 12-30-2016, 10:07 AM   #5
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Colvin and especially Blake can be tricky if it is icy, and it often is earlier in the winter. Depending on the conditions, they may not be the best option for a first time winter High Peak.

Sawteeth isn't too bad, it's a bit more remote and it's a longer day but overall it is relatively straightforward.

Dial and Nippletop are also a longer day but again, relatively straightforward. The climb up Nippletop from the west gets steep but rarely technical unless everything is coated in ice.

Phelps or Colden from the Loj are pretty straightfoward. Phelps has a couple of steep spots that can be tricky but usually aren't too bad.

Since this is your first winter High Peak, I'd also suggest considering re-climbing a peak that you've already climbed in warmer months. This will remove much of the challenge of navigation (as you'll already have personal familiarity with the route), and allow you to focus more fully on just gaining experience and familiarity with winter conditions.
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Old 12-30-2016, 04:48 PM   #6
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Thank you. I was thinking Wright or Tabletop too since we are familiar with a good portion of each trail.

The Weld trail looks promising - a good portion of the route in on Lake Rd, climb to reach the col and have the option of Sawteeth and/or Gothic. Of course than Armstrong tempts.
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Old 12-30-2016, 05:36 PM   #7
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Armstrong has a ladder on the north side of it (between that peak and UWJ) that can be pretty tricky in winter. It often gets covered in ice/snow, and then you're faced with having to ascend/descend the ledge without any good hand holds. It's not a huge ledge but it's just barely tall enough to be sketchy without hand holds.

Also, Pyramid Peak (on the southern approach to Gothics) has a few open rocky spots that can be a bit tricky in winter as well.

From what I remember, the trail that ascends from the AMR to the ridge between Armstrong and Gothics is relatively straightforward without a lower likelihood of potentially tricky spots in winter.
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Old 01-03-2017, 08:16 AM   #8
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Thanks folks. We had a great time. Turned back prior to peak but had a great time. Great 1st time experience. Will do a trip report shortly.
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