FKT: Annie Hughes - Blanca Peak (CO) - 2019-09-28

Route variation
Blanca ascent from 2WD TH (8,000')
Gender category
Finish date
Total time
2h 50m 35s
GPS track(s)

I satisfied some serious Sangre De Cristo cravings this last weekend by chasing a personal best time on the 14er I treasure the most, Blanca Peak. While Blanca is not necessarily a technical climb, it is still a well-earned summit... over 8 miles to the top with nearly 6,000+ feet of elevation gain. This sacred mountain referred to as “Sisnaajiní” by the Navajo Native American tribe, has always been incredibly inspiring to me. I’ve climbed it multiple times in all kinds of conditions from deep snow to dry, sunny days. I’ve also run up the infamous Como Road (a section of the route) numerous times as it is the closest hill/incline to the flat-lands of Alamosa where I used to reside. However, I had never attempted to run all the way to the top of Blanca, and I honestly wasn’t sure if I had it in me. Making the summit in under 3 hours was a bit of a reach, but I gained some confidence when I made it up to Como Lake faster than I ever had before with plenty of pep left in my legs to keep the pace rolling. I was pleased to reach the summit in 2 hours and 50 minutes, and I sat there savoring the peacefulness, and raw beauty of the summit before making my way down.
The Sangre De Cristo Range is exceptionally special to me, and living further away from these peaks now makes each visit even more of a treat. I am filled with gratitude for a day very well spent in these incredible mountains.