Type: Ice, 160 ft (48 m)
FA: unknown
Page Views: 191 total · 12/month
Shared By: mike d on Mar 13, 2023
Admins: Edward Medina, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC

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Description Suggest change

An adventurous hike leads up (or down) to this pretty flow with a view out to the Ouray Amphitheater. Belay under a sheltered overhang to climber's left. Initially steep, the flow eases back to a narrow, possibly awkward flat creek topout. Taller than it looks.

With enough snow, the live tree above/left of the route offers an anchor, otherwise it might be sketchy to reach; in that case other trees are available further back.

Unlike Oak Creek Icefall next door, it can't be seen from anywhere, but it also gets no sun, so it should be a good bet by mid-winter.

For added value, climb Oak Creek Icefall if it's in and/or slog (way) further up to Middle Oak Creek Falls.

Location Suggest change

At the west end of Ouray, park at the small Oak Creek/Perimeter trailhead at the top of Queen Street. Don't take the trail, but rather hike south up Pinecrest, past a few residences, and up the big switchback.

In half a mile, turn right onto the signed Perimeter Trail, and hike to the signed junction at the top of the hill. From here, there are several ways to access the climb:

  1. Bottom: continue on the well-trodden trail to the bridge across Oak Creek, then go left up the Old Twin Peaks trail. For maximum adventure, leave this trail where it splits from Oak Creek around 8,100' and contour in. Depending on conditions, the scenic creek can be a fun, semi-arduous ramble with a few short ice steps that may warrant belays.
  2. Top: turn left onto the signed Oak Creek Trail, and follow it for just under a mile to another signed junction. Stay right on the Oak Creek Trail, which immediately contours into the creek at 8,800' across a N/NE-facing slope that may present localized avalanche hazard. Descend Oak Creek to the climb, which might require a few short rappels (look for canyoneering anchors).
  3. Top: follow your choice of top access methods for Oak Creek Icefall and rappel all the way down to the creek.

Snowshoes are recommended for all approaches. The main flow is located around 8,600', immediately left of Oak Creek Icefall.

Protection Suggest change

Two ropes and a standard ice rack.