“Huerfano” Peak – 13,828 ft.
Technically speaking, the mountain’s official name is Unnamed 13828. Lying directly north of the 14er Mount Lindsey, and at the head of Huerfano Creek, some refer to this Sangre de Cristo summit as Huerfano Peak.
Since we had just come off nearby Mount Adams the afternoon before, we figured we should get Huerfano skied while we were down in the area. It would be the fifth Centennial peak that Christy and I would ski in as many days on this road trip, and we were both feeling tired and ready to take a day off. But it’s a really long way down to this mountain from where we live, and this time of May you can drive far up the Huerfano Creek jeep road, so knowing that we’d be happy to have the check mark in the column we rallied for one more summit.
After navigating the usual melt-zone on the approach, with a lot of skis-on-skis-off through punchy snow, we reached the creek crossing and then began skinning. Things got a bit more fun from there. The route follows the same course as if you were headed to Mt. Lindsey, to the 13,100 foot saddle. From there you head north, and can skin right to Huerfano’s summit.
Due to private property issues in the area, the south/southeast side of Huerfano is the only ski route that won’t put you in a trespassing situation, though an awesome bowl drops off the summit to the east and might be the best ski line if it were allowed. We had to stick to the south face, so we loosely retraced our route of ascent back to the saddle and down to the trailhead. We were tired but happy to wrap up an awesome five-day road trip, and just as the weather seemed to be becoming unsettled. Maybe it’s time to start thinking about summer?