BETA PHOTO: Denise at Music Pass with the Mark Rothko Wall.
The South and Southeast Face of the East Ridge of Tijeras Peak, known as the Mark Rothko Wall, is part of an isolated cirque high in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. It saw its apparent first ascent by Brad McCullough, Josh Schneck and Jim Disney on September 4, 1988 with "Vertical Study in Grays and Browns": summitpost.org/route/178728/So...
Five other routes were done in 1999 and 2000.
The rock is composed of quality gneiss and granite. However, as in all alpine areas which see little traffic, expect occasional loose blocks on any route. The low angle slopes of the upper 4th class pitches have the most loose material but is generally easy enough to avoid letting anything drop if one uses appropriate caution. Bring a trad rack. If you are planning to put up a new line on a seamless face, use a hand bolting kit as this is a designated Wilderness area. No motorized drilling is allowed. All routes that top out descend the 3rd Class slot 1/2 mile to the NNW as described in the 'High 13ers' book. In early season it can be snow filled. This will bring you back to Lower Sand Creek Lake - the best place to camp. We only found one spot big enough to pitch a tent in the cirque.
Land management in this area has changed in recent years. Sand Creek Valley is now included in the extreme NE extent of the Great Sand Dunes National Preserve, a part of the GSD National Park. GSD National Preserve is also a part of the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness and is managed by the Forest Service and the National Park Service.
Provisions can be had in the fine little town of Westcliffe. From there, drive south on Hwy 69 for 4+ miles to Rd 119 and continue south till you get to a T intersection. Turn left going east, the road will turn back south. This is [Music] Pass Road, still 119. Follow it about 5 miles through many curves to a sizeable parking area. You will need a low end 4WD from this point to continue roughly west on FR 329 for 3 miles to the trailhead. From here, it's a 4 mile hike to Lower Sand Creek Lake. TR 903 will take you over Music Pass. Once in the Sand Creek Valley, TR903 connects with TR743, continue west to an intersection leading to a crossing. This takes you SW to Lower Sand Creek Lake.
Weather station 7.6 miles from here
6 Total Routes
['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',3],['2 Stars',2],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]
Featured Route For Tijeras Peak
Astromarmot 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
: Alpine Rock
: Tijeras Peak
Start at the top right of the snowfield at +/-12,600 ft. Fourth Class it up a right-leaning, narrow ramp to a good stance. Trend left for two pitches across a face then a crack to the right end of the slabby, diagonal ramp. Follow the top of the ramp for a long pitch then a short pitch before you reach the left end, to stop below a hopefully dry, waterfall trough. Go straight up this crux pitch. Another pitch takes you to the top of the east ridge. Simulclimb to the summit or descend NW....[more] Browse More Classics in CO
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