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|Conditions Information||Posted By||Posted On|
|2016-06-03||Route: South Gully aka Cristo Couloir
Info: No solid freeze overnight, so the snow was punchy even at 6 am. Some evidence of wet loose slide on climber's right about half way up. Came down around 9:45 am, the first 500 feet was ok, then it was mashed potato snow all the way to the bottom. Not very fun even on a snowboard. My friend who was on foot was postholing all the way to his waist, he had to hike down the rocky slope to skier's right.
|2016-05-30||Route: East Ridge
Info: Road is clear to the TH. I don't think they really got any snow last Thursday. At least not anywhere near what was forecast. Trail is dirt/snow/ice mix the first half mile and then hard packed uneven snow up to tree line. Used spikes once I hit first icy patches. Snow was hard and well travelled all the way to the top before sunrise and continued using spikes to my summit at 6:30am. Hung out for a few and descended quickly on my spikes. Snow was starting to get soft even at 7:00.
|2016-05-29||Route: East Ridge
Info: Left TH at 7:30am. Summited at 12:30pm. Back to car at 2:30pm. Trail is covered in packed snow most of the route. I wore microspikes the whole time and carried snowshoes on my back. Only postholed a little between 10,500' and 11,000' on the return. Saw people going up and down with skies, boards, crampons, spikes, and nothing. Didn't see anyone having any problems. Enjoy!
|2016-05-28||Route: North Gully aka Quandary Couloir
Info: Quandary's North Couloir is stuffed with snow right now. With a questionable forecast, we hurried up the east ridge and dropped into the couloir by 9:30am. Continuous from the top, it had 4-8" of fresh powder on top of a solid base which had a good freeze the night before. The early start helped because the top snow was quickly softening on the skier-left when we were about 1/2 way down the couloir. After exiting the couloir, we skied around the small lake and down through the forest, along the summer trail. Snow became collapsible abound 11,500' in the forest, approx. 1/4 mile before we hit the old road which connects to the end of the McCullough Gulch (851) road. We then skinned about 1/2 mile down the 851 road before walking the last 1/2 mile to the Quandary TH.
|2016-05-26||Route: South Gully aka Cristo Couloir
Info: Was able to drive to the lower lake but not quite the upper lake. Put crampons on at the dam and then took them off after 5 minutes because there is a dry patch right before the true couloir. Had a solid overnight freeze and the snow was nice and firm. Summitted at 10 and was hoping to wait a little bit for the snow to soften up but then weather came in. The descent was on crusty snow. I had to ski down with one pole because I apparently lost the other one on the way up so if anyone finds a black diamond trekking/ski pole you should let me know please!
|2016-05-22||Route: East Ridge
Info: Wind was insane on the final 1000 ft ridge, and I would have turned around if I didn't have my ice axe and trekking pole, as it was turning my board into a sail. Summit was warm and wind free. There is continuous snow from the summit to ~400 feet below tree line. Below that is intermixed patches of snow and dry trail, with some icy spots near the bottom. Starting at 540 AM the snow was solid and still frozen. I hiked it in snowboard boots with no traction issues at all. I snowboarded the Upper East bowl and then followed the trail back. The best May run of my life! Snow was perfect corn, not too soft and not too hard. Rocks were easy to avoid. Snow was very stable early in the morning, no red flags that I saw. Returning to tree line around 10:20 the snow, sections were post-hole hell. I saw people falling in waist deep! I could barely stay afloat, even on my board. Would bring snowshoes to descend tree line if you don't have a board/skis. Goats were also out this afternoon enjoying this perfect day in Colorado.
|2016-05-22||Route: North Gully aka Quandary Couloir
Info: Climbed North Gully on 22 May 2016. Descended East ridge. Road was not even open to standard TH so approach was significantly longer. Snowshoes needed for approach to N. Couloir. Snow all the way to the summit. Evidence of older wet slab activity down low. Condition of snow varied today. Around 13,000ft we encountered an inch crust on top of what looked like large grapple. We opted to hug the right edge of the rock band because of the conditions. Higher up the conditions improved. Because of the conditions we opted to descend the standard route. Good day our with good people.
|2016-05-21||Route: East Ridge
Info: Brought snowshoes and crampons, never wore either on the ascent. Snow was well packed all the way to the summit. Once temps warmed up after 12ish for the descent, the snowshoes became vital, at least below 13,000'.
|2016-05-21||Route: South Gully aka Cristo Couloir
Info: Snow was better consolidated than I was expecting after recent storm. Lots of slide debris, but easy to avoid. Started from the gate 5:30 am, topped out a bit before 8:30. Never put snowshoes on. Nice glissade track for the descent.
|2016-05-19||Route: South Gully aka Cristo Couloir
Info: Lots of wet slide debris through out the entire couloir.
|2016-05-13||Route: South Gully aka Cristo Couloir
Info: Cristo in great condition. You can drive to the gate approximately a half mile from the dam. I elected to leave my skins in the truck and walked down the road, but you could do either. The snow is continuous to the summit and there is a solid booter up most of the gully . The snow was nice and soft by about 1030...on a less windy day, I'd think somewhere between 9-10am would be ideal to drop in (for skiing/riding). There is one bony section about ~100 feet from the summit...easy enough to navigate though.
|2016-05-11||Route: East Ridge
Info: Trail well packed down. Went up in boots w/o traction or flotation. For the last 1000 ft gain to summit, I was kick stepping and staying just to the right of the packed down trail that was just a little slick. On the way down I put traction on which made for easier decent of the packed trail until I got down to 13K feet. It's been colder recently so trail had good freeze. However, starting to warm up by 10:30AM when I was back down between 12 and 13K feet (lots of sun out today). Didn't see any skiers but a morning ski today would not have been that great with mostly crusty snow and some icy patches. Probably better tomorrow and next day as looking like warming will continue.
|2016-05-07||Route: East Ridge
Info: This is my first time doing Quandary, along with a couple other friends who joined me for the hike. In saying so - it should be noted that the 851 Road and small parking area are closed during winter, as they don't plow it, but there's sufficient parking at the lower parking lot. We started our ascent at 5:30am, ready for anything based on bigtuna2008's report of lots of snow on the route, so we packed snowshoes. Surprisingly (and happily), we never needed to use our snow shoes on the ascent due to the new snow having melted, and the snow that was present, was easily traveled with minor post holing. We made the summit at around 9:30am, along with one other person who was looking to ski down the mountain, but surprisingly we had only met one other person who had summited the peak that day. As we were making our way to the top, there were some clouds that were moving across the peaks in the area fairly quickly, but nothing to get us too concerned about. But on the way down, dark clouds rolled in, and that's when we experienced just about everything - rain, sleet, hail, along with lighting. Made for an interesting decent. Surprisingly, there was about 2 dozen people who were still lumbering on up the ridge in all of that madness.
|2016-05-03||Route: East Ridge
Info: Mountain is completely covered with snow from the last snow storm. It was hot enough on the mountain to start melting the snow and even enough for the snow to start collapsing on itself in certain spots. Snowshoes are a must. Me and my dog climbed the peak today and had a great time, but I wish I would have brought a sled or something to go down the mountain with as my hips were killing me because of using the snowshoes so much. We ran into about 20 climbers (mostly skiers and snowboarders). There was a couple that was climbing and made it about half-way without snowshoes. On the way up it was approximately 40mph gusts and 30mph winds. We reached the summit and the winds were very calm. It was very nice. On the way back down the wind picked back up, but not nearly as bad as on the way up. Overall a great climb. I was surprised how steep it was when you are just climbing straight up, but for a 3.50 mile one-way hike and around 3,500ft elevation gain, that would make sense.
|2016-04-27||Route: East Ridge
Info: Hit trailhead at 9a got got above tree line before 10a. Trail was great. I recommend crampons, the trail is crusty, but slick. Had to turn around because of the storm. Couldn't see past tree line. It was snowing the entire hike, be careful of it getting slippery the next few days. Saw one skier and a snowboarder on the way down, the way the storm came in I don't think they made it to tree line.
|2016-04-25||Route: East Ridge
Info: Great conditions yesterday from the lower trail head with solid snow all the way up to the summit. Left the trail head at 8AM, summit at 10:30, hung out for 20 mins and back at the car just after noon. Some hard/icy patches in the trees, minimal soft spots with postholing to no more than 6 inches just out of the trees and some mixed windblown/crusty stuff up on the ridge. Brought snowshoes and almost put them on but stuck with microspikes and poles for the entire route (I would recommend bringing snowshoes just in case). A few other peeps out enjoying the mountain as well skiing/snowboarding (definitely some good lines still to be had!) and hiking. I definitely enjoyed having the summit all to myself on one of the most popular 14ers and the views and weather were fantastic! Conditions will surely be changing a lot this week with the unsettled/stormy pattern, so keep it in mind.
|2016-04-09||Route: East Ridge
Info: As of yesterday snowshoes might be helpful in the trees but otherwise not necessary. We carried them and didn't use them at all. Route is 90% snow with a few sections of exposed rocks. Plenty of skiers and snowboarders out enjoying the mountain as well.
|2016-04-03||Route: South Gully aka Cristo Couloir
Info: One snowboarder and two skiers boot packed up Cristo Couloir Sunday. Started from the parking lot at sunrise. Snow was breakable crust that sometimes supported but often disappointed. No cracking or whumfing on the way up or down. Quite breezy most of the day and howling on top. We were off the route around 1:00pm and the snow was definitely softening at that time. We were able to glide all the way out but the road is opening up in spots so this won't last long.
|2016-04-03||Route: East Ridge
Info: A little breezy on Sunday. Snowshoes were helpful but not mandatory on the way down around noon as the snow started getting a bit soft.
|2016-03-28||Route: East Ridge
Info: Bluebird day on Quandary. Left TH around 7am. Snow from last week definitely deep in places. Snowshoes not necessary on the ascent, but spikes were very helpful. On the descent however, around 11:30, temps had risen enough to make snowshoes very useful. Even with them, snow was sloppy enough to cause some pretty good sinking. Well defined trail all the way up, thanks to previous hikers from the weekend.