Yankee Boy Basin
Day Three of our wildflower fest found us in four-wheel drive wrou, wrou, wrouing up to phenomenal Yankee Boy Basin. The only downfall: it's a very busy basin full of 4x4s crawling toward thinner atmosphere. Words don't really describe the flowers here. This is one of the few alpine regions capable of giving the wildflowers of the Crested Butte area a run for their money. When Yankee Boy Basin flowers are at peak, it's amazing. We hit it very close to peak
The alpine tundra and sentinel peaks are not bad on the eyes either. I think the San Juan Mountains are Colorado's finest alpine peaks; Yankee Boy Basin touches only a tip of them. Enjoy the pics.
The scenery kicks into high gear in lower Yankee Boy Basin.
As we inched up the mountain side, views began to open up. In the far upper left, the summit block of Mount Sneffels (14,150 ft, rank #27) is just visible. The peak in the upper left is Kismet (13,694 ft, no rank). The upper right peak is Cirque Mountain (13,686 ft, rank #155). Cirque actually has two summits. Note: Kismet is not ranked because its connecting saddle with Mount Sneffels has less than 300-foot drop in elevation. Kismet has what is known as a soft rank.
Rock Groundsel (I think)
During the late 1800s, some regions of the San Juan Mountains underwent a fair amount of mining. Access into the many areas is the result of mining. However, the mountain range is vast, and much of the San Juans remain primitive, especially the South San Juan Mountains.
Clouds swirling about Kismet predicted afternoon monsoonal rain.
The high saddle between Teakettle Mountain (13,819 ft, rank #98) and Potosi Peak (13,786 ft, rank #113) is more difficult to reach than it looks. The rock up high is loose and often resting at the angle of repose. However, sometimes the rock is worth the care required to navigate. Teakettle is one of the finer alpine climbs I've done. Its coffee table-sized summit was a hoot.
The following pics are from previous trips and used to present Teakettle Mountain and Potosi Peak. The spout succumbed to gravity and snow during the 1998/1999 winter. The second picture is of the tiny summit.
Upper Yankee Boy Basin is home to 13,694-foot Gilpin Peak (rank #149). Crossing the saddle between Gilpin and Sneffels will deposit you into the spectacular Blue Lakes Basin.
Potosi Peak touches the clouds at 13,786 feet (rank #113).
More Yankee Boy to come. Check back.