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Quandary Peak  
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Route  Conditions Information  Posted By   Posted On    Photos  Comments Likes Dislikes    
2013-02-12  East Ridge  Hiked Quandary Peak‘s East Ridge today. I had planned on hiking with seth0687 but I ran off the road (ice) on Hoosier Pass on the way there so I got a late start (he went on without me). seth0687 did a lot of trail breaking that I benefited from (thanks!). There was 1 other person on the trail today, but they turned back at about 14k feet due to cold and wind. There should be a well defined trail pretty much the entire way. The one exception would be on the ridge where the wind quickly obscures trails, but the ridge is very easy to follow even without any kind of trial. Just stay on it, and don‘t stray close to the northern or southern faces, and you‘ll be fine. Wind this morning was forecasted at ~20mph, but seth0687 and I experienced winds on the ridge, especially the last 1000 vertical feet or so, upwards of 40-50mph, and it was extremely cold (the water in my nalgene bottles froze about an inch thick around the edges, and the entire neck portion froze and had to be knocked loose with a rock). However, we both toughed it out and made the summit. Aside from the wind and the cold it brought with it, which was pretty horrible in our opinions, it was a beautiful day to be on the trail. I don‘t have the details on seth0687‘s times but it took me about 4h10m to summit, and 1h45m to descend. 6.6mi RT. Those last 1000 or so vertical feet with the wind was a lot of moving a short distance, hunkering down until the wind died down a bit, then moving until it got unbearable again. There were a few spots where snow shoes could have been helpful, but they were so short that it would have been a massive hassle to break them out, then take them off. I used microspikes the whole way with no problems. If you have to break trail on this route, there are a few spots that could be confusing, but if you keep your eyes open as you choose routes you should be able to find the right route pretty quickly after diverting from it, if you make an error. seth0687 might have more to say on that. In the attached image the green route is the 14ers.com GPX, and the blue route is from my GPS. vdavidoff   2013-02-12 1  1    Edit Delete 
2013-02-05  West Ridge  I attempted the West Ridge route, but never really got that far past the dam before turning back. The road is plowed to the old Monte Cristo TH, then it‘s snowpack to treeline, after that the road is mostly dry to the dam. I got maybe 350 to 500 yards past the dam before giving up, took me too long to get to this point and I really wasn‘t interested in a 14 to 18 hour day the way I was moving, just wasn‘t my day today. Too bad, it was a great looking day for a climb. boudreaux   2013-02-05 4  2    Edit Delete 
2013-02-04  East Ridge  The route up Quandary is still hikeable without snowshoes. They do help though around treeline if you aren‘t able to follow previous hikers. The blowing snow covers footprints pretty quickly, but as long as you follow the ridge up you‘ll be okay. (the route is more apparent above 13,000‘) The trail below treeline is hardpacked and very easy to follow. The wind was quite strong today so be careful if the the NWS says "windy". I would definately recommend microspikes. HikerDan75   2013-02-04  0       
2013-01-26  East Ridge  The route up Quandary is 100% hikeable without any snowshoes. Using Microspikes was helpful in getting us up and down at a relatively quick pace, but they weren‘t necessary. There were springlike conditions on the peak, which is slightly alarming for January. All of this is subject to change with the weather forecasted over the next couple of days. Looks like winter may finally be here! LizWeiss   2013-01-28  0  1  Edit Delete 
2013-01-19  East Ridge  No postholing of any kind. The trail is now very easy to follow and hard packed after dozens of hikers (including 30+ from 14ers.com today) have used it. Microspikes are recommended for traction. esagas   2013-01-19  0     Edit Delete 
2013-01-18  East Ridge  Just updating the conditions from 2 days ago--maybe helpful to the big group tomorrow--went bottom to top in microspikes--only annoying area is the slope right above the trees--some postholing but about 12 guys followed me up and now there is a nice trench. Not worth lugging snowshoes, IMO. Doesn‘t get any easier than this. Feel like I only deserve half a snowflake!  ctlee   2013-01-18  0     Edit Delete 
2013-01-16  East Ridge  The trail is hard packed well till the point the summer/winter trial deviates. Snow shoes would have been helpful! I counted 8 people up there yesterday so there is a start of a trench in some places. After the 12,100 area spikes or crampons is all you need. You can view my TR and photos at: http://www.coloradoascents.blogspot.com/2013/01/quandary-winter-climb.html MTGOAT72   2013-01-17  0  4    Edit Delete 
2013-01-05  East Ridge  As mentioned from a conditions report a few days earlier, there was a packed trail the entire way up. Did not bring snowshoes. High winds gusting to "knock you off balance" mph. The wind scouring made the trail quite firm in spots on the final steep section, making microspikes and poles very helpful for traction and balance. Although it was a bluebird day... on the descent, right before tree line... the strong winds had blown ground snow and covered up the trail. This resulted in about 10 minutes of off trail postholing. Not a big deal on a route as obvious as Quandary. It got me thinking though, that on a different mountain, where route finding could be an issue...snowshoes might be worth carrying even with recent reports of a packed trail. powhound   2013-01-09  0     Edit Delete 
2013-01-01  East Ridge  Good snow cover on Quandary. Trail is pretty well packed below treeline and hardpacked above. Snowshoes/traction not really needed, but some folks might want ‘em. Technically, there‘s cover from summit to trailhead, and if you‘re careful with your line you could ski the whole thing! Good climbing conditions today, although a bit chilly...7 below at 8am to start! Should be in good shape ‘til the next snow dumps! mtnmike   2013-01-01 2  2  Edit Delete 
2012-12-02  East Ridge  Almost entirely dirt. Short/medium sections of ice and packed snow on the trail can be avoided if you don‘t have spikes. Between the TH and 12,500 there is very little snow, only one section to walk around if you don‘t have spikes. Above 13,100‘ where the ridge is stepper, there is a lot of packed snow and ice on the trail itself. It can be avoided by walking on the talus. Either trekking poles, spikes, or both would be a good idea though. Bring plenty of protection from the wind on this ridge! ezabielski   2012-12-03  0  1  Edit Delete 
2012-11-23  East Ridge  Climbed East Ridge today; started out at 430AM and watched the sunrise from the summit. (well, technically the sun came up about half an hour before I summited but those are the breaks). The trail is mostly dirt still; there is a shocking lack of snow up there, though there is some hardpack & ice in sections. I was glad to have my microspikes, you won‘t need them all the time but I found they came in handy and were worth leaving on, both ways starting & ending at about 12K feet give or take. There‘s plenty of hardpack on the last 800‘ pitch, though much of this could probably be avoided, but spikes let you just take it on. a94buff   2012-11-23  0     Edit Delete 
2012-11-14  East Ridge  I climbed Quandary today up the east ridge trail. There was probably around two inches of snow on the ground. The trail was well packed and easy going with my micro spikes. It was a bright sunny day with no problems except the wind above treeline.The short blue lake road off of highway9 was in good shape to the trailhead randybear4   2012-11-14  0  1    Edit Delete 
2012-11-03  East Ridge  Weather was beautiful, around 40 degrees with some gusty wind. The trail was pretty clear through the trees and up to the ridge. Above treeline up until about 13,000‘ there was a decent amount of very slippery snow pack, which got icy in numerous spots. Above 13,000‘, there was a good soft snow pack on the trail. I used poles on the way up, and both poles and microspikes on the way down (though I saw many people who used nothing on the way up, and only microspikes on the way down). I‘m just very cautious about falling I suppose. It was very windy at the summit - had to break out the face warmer while sitting up there. Overall, the route was much slower going for me than usual because of the ice between treeline and 13,000‘, but again, there were many people moving much faster than me. kingshimmers   2012-11-08 3  1  Edit Delete 
2012-10-31  East Ridge  Climbed Quandary Peak via the East Ridge on Halloween. Was contemplating going up the West Ridge, but had my dog and was unsure about ice and whether pups could make it. So I set out around 9:45 am since weather was supposed to be perfect. Weather stayed beautiful - about 45 degrees with very little to no wind Made it to summit by about 11:20 am and talked with a Breckenridge local for about 20 minutes under a clear, blue sky and slight breeze. Going through the trees, there was a bit of snow and some icy patches, but nothing that was bad and/or unavoidable. Above treeline, there was some icy patches, but again, nothing unavoidable. At about 12,800‘, route was packed snow to the top. I was carrying microspikes and poles, but didn‘t need either on the way up. On the way down, broke out the poles, but didn‘t use my microspikes (although it wouldn‘t have been a bad idea). All in all, the route was in pretty good shape and made it off the trail by about 1:00 p.m. Weather for Quandary over this next weekend is supposed to be beautiful and I expect most of the snow to be pretty soft as long as you aren‘t hitting the trailhead before sunrise. rjennings   2012-11-01  0  2  Edit Delete 
2012-10-14  East Ridge  Started at trailhead at 9 AM, got to the top 2.5 hours later. Not much snow on top (but just enough to make a snowman), and definitely no ice. Mild winds, clear skies, and somehow all the snow clouds were lingering above the mountains bordering Quandary and not the peak itself! Perfect. Any snow on the trail had basically melted by the time we got back down. Some locals decided to block the trail too! gabsimonelouise   2012-10-18 2     Edit Delete 
2012-10-06  East Ridge  Started hiking at 7:40 am and made it up to the top by around 9:45. There was a little bit of snow/ice on the trail but still easily made it up without a hassle. Windy and chilly on top. Made it back to the car by 11:40. Was an easy enough hike. nperrault1   2012-10-07  0     Edit Delete 
2012-09-30  East Ridge  A mix of snow and mud once you get closer to the top, deceptive ice patches on the way down. We got tripped up on the loose rocks a few times so just take each step carefully. We reached the summit right at 11:55 AM and mini hail stones started to fall just about 15 minutes later. Not bad except when they smack you in the face haha. Gorgeous views. Kaydubs17   2012-09-30  0     Edit Delete 
2012-09-29  West Ridge  Doing the West Ridge route of Quandary sheds a whole different light on this mountain. I didn‘t see a single person until I got to the summit. The south side of the ridge had no snow at all. The north side was different - see the pictures. I was glad to have my gaitors. I had microspikes, but didn‘t use them....perhaps I should have. There was 2-8 inches of dry powder. It seemed especially deep in the most inconvenient places, covering the rock and (I felt) increasing the difficulty. This route is spicy, and the snow increased that factor. There were a couple of places where I would not have felt comfortable trying to downclimb on the return trip, so I opted to take the East Ridge trail down to 13,100 then dropped south back down to my truck parked at Blue Lakes TH. Mike Cormier   2012-09-30 3     Edit Delete 
2012-09-18  East Ridge  Approach from the east is still very doable. The last 1000 ft or so was a mix of mud and snow today. Rather slippery coming down. Bayou   2012-09-18  0     Edit Delete 
2012-09-16  East Ridge  The weather was beautiful on top September 16, 2012 and to my surprise there was a couple cooking pancakes. I couldn‘t stop myself from taking a picture and posting it on the forum. Here is a picture of Pancake Man and Hotcake Woman; thank you for your hospitality on top of Quandary. May we meet again, keep the griddle hot. czechmark   2012-09-20 1     Edit Delete 

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