Matt Mahoney's 2008 Colorado Vacation
Matt Mahoney's Home Page
I hiked from Cunningham Gulch (10,500 ft) to a ridge at about 13,100 ft on Canby Mt (not the summit) and back because this is miles 87 to 91 of the Hardrock course. Two years ago during the race it got dark (second night) on Canby Mt. and it took 4 1/2 hours to go the 4 miles to Cunningham Gulch. I got there at 1:50 AM, 10 minuntes before the cutoff, then missed the finish cutoff (48 hours) by 6 minutes. So I wanted to get familiar with the course. This time it took 3 hours to climb to Canby Mt. and 2 1/2 hours to return, but of course it was daylight. The course markers are already in place so it was not too hard to follow. They are much harder to see with a flashlight.
This was the turn around of my hike today after about 3 hours of climbing. I did not descend to Maggie Gulch (11,000 ft) below. During the race we will approach from over the second ridge at about 12,000 ft, descend to the Maggie Gulch aid station below, then climb southwest to this point at about 13,100 ft along the trails climbing this ridge.
From here we descend along the right side of the ridge to the top of Stony Pass at 12,800 ft. Then we cross the road and cross a few snow fields going southwest to the saddle just to the right of Green Mt. ahead.
We cross the saddle below Green Mt. from going south left to right. Elevation is about 13,000 ft.
We descend Green Mt. down the steep grassy slopes from the upper left of the picture. The grade is about 60%. Then we turn west, then northwest along more gentle slopes.
We cross the stream below on the snow, then turn right (northwest) and descend the valley.
The valley turns into a ridge, which descends steeply to the northwest. Then we turn left and descend the even steeper slopes of the ridge going southeast.
We descend to the road below. The Cunningham Gulch aid station is just below the bottom of the road.
The trail traverses cliffs where a slip means falling hundreds of feet. It is not as scary in the dark because you can't see how far you would fall.
At the road you turn right and go about 1/4 mile. If you turn left you come to this beautiful waterfall, but you are lost.
After the aid station, you cross the river and climb 2500 ft. up this hill to the right of the waterfall in about 2 miles, then traverse to Dives-Little Giant Pass, the next one to the right, and descend 3000 ft on the other side. This might explain why it took me 4:16 (6 minutes late) to run the last 9 miles 2 years ago.