Stewart Peak - 13983' - East Ridge Class 2
Baldy Alto - 13698' - Class 2
I did this trip solo after a partner had to bail and I was already halfway down to the San Juans. I decided to try Stewart and Baldy Alto. The drive down the long dirt roads to the Nutras Creek Trailhead took a toll of my jalopy but I managed. It was well after dark when I pulled up to the Nutras Creek bridge and I simply went to sleep. I made sure I was on the east side of the car so the sun would wake me up as I needed an early start. Right at 6am I woke and was on my was shortly after. The so called trail up Nutras Creek is basically no longer there. Looks more like a game trail but heading up the valley wasn't too bad. I actually went up a side drainage to the north and close to treeline where the valley flattened out I came across some large beaver ponds that were a pain to cross. Instead of continuing straight up the valley as is shown in the photo at the left, I continued up to the crest of the right located further north. I did this to avoid all the willows seen in this photo. The ensuing long ridge walk to the small saddle just above the snow patch in this photo was very easy. I finished the final 800 feet to the summit of Stewart on the standard east ridge. It was still early in the morning so it was cold and breezy so I only spent around 15 minutes there and began the traverse to Baldy Alto. I made quick work of the descent and saw a large herd of elk running across the valley to the south. Man they run fast. The last bit of up hill to Baldy Alto was quick and this summit was much warmer so I stayed longer to admire the views. I descended the long east ridge and dropped back to the valley closer to where I began up the side drainage instead of dropping into the valley right away not knowing what the bushes would be like. The final walk on the small trail back to the car was a warm pleasant walk. I didn't see a single person the whole time.