Mt. Belford  
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Conditions Information  Posted By   Posted On    Photos  Comments  Likes, Dislikes      
2016-10-20  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Weather was perfect, low wind and solid temps. Trail was mostly clear of snow and ice, there were sections that the snow covered the trail, not much of an issue going up more going down after the snow had melted and the ice became slippery. Overall though the trail is still great and the summit is very reachable. 
acpeterson11779  2016-10-24   0             
2016-10-15  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Sunny and cool, but windy. The Weather Channel indicated wind would be in low 20 mph range, but wind and gusts exceeded 60 mph at and near the summit. Mixture of rock/dirt and snow/ice in trails above tree line. Poles and micro-spikes were nice to have (other climbers on trail without spikes). No water to be had above the Missouri Gulch. We each brought about 60 liters of water, which was more than enough for Mt. Belford. However, had we extended to Oxford, we would have gotten thirsty. 
awflynn  2016-10-16   1             
2016-10-12  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Smooth sailing. Once you are on the main ridge you'll run into occasional knee-high snow if you go off route. Route finding was quite easy so it shouldn't be a problem. Microspikes and trekking poles definitely made life easier in a few spots. Had the place to was a beautiful day. 
jpoppinfresh  2016-10-12   0             
2016-10-08  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Did Combo, see Mt. Oxford report. 
Tlorbets  2016-10-08   0             
2016-09-03  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Clear all the way 
50Stater  2016-09-03   0             
2016-07-06  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Camped at the cabin campsite. Temperature was perfect throughout the day. The summit was extremely windy (est. 35-45 mi/hr). No hazards along the route, summer conditions. Just be wary of the wind! 
Indy  2016-07-07   0             
2016-06-18  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Beautiful conditions. Very little snow on the route and is avoidable apart from one area on the Oxford ascent... though it could be avoided with some rock hopping. Easy trail to follow. Be sure to cross the creek/river before you reach the hut, be sure to go to the left rather than following what "could be" a trail to the right... There are hot-pink markers on trees, which led to confusion and a rapid-like river crossing, but it's avoidable if you cross in the right place. Be ready for lots of switch-backs and some steep parts, but other than that, summer-like conditions. 
E_A_Marcus_949  2016-06-20   0             
2016-06-18  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Summer conditions on Belford. Leave the snow gear at home as there is no need. 
tobiasfunke  2016-06-18   0             
2016-06-11  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Did the NW Ridge, then followed the traverse over to Oxford. Really nothing to this one other than a long, steep trudge. Currently the snow on the trail is entirely avoidable in all but a few places, though the post holes are good enough that no extra traction or aid is really needed. There's one spot where the switchback is still covered in snow, but cutting it seems to be the name of the game till it thaws. No need for microspikes, gaiters, or an ice axe unless you plan on going into the bowl between Oxford and Belford. The traverse has slightly more snow, but it's largely avoidable with a little rock-hopping, and good route finding. The peaks surrounding Oxford and Belford still appear to have quite a bit more snow than either of these. Weather-wise, once the sun is out you're fine; it's t-shirt and shorts weather when there's no wind. 
edvardkenfish  2016-06-12   0             
2016-06-11  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Summited Belford and Oxford this morning. Practically summer conditions with some sparse snow near peaks which wasn't an issue until the snow made it slushy. You can use some old postholes to traverse snow spots. Lots of folks wearing tennis shoes and no poles and saw lots of people falling - wear boots and bring poles. These are very steeps climbs and you're going to want the support and traction coming down. Additionally, you may want to consider extra water as this is 11 miles if you do both Bel and Ox - I ran out of water halfway through the descent. Start early regardless of your speed and fitness level! This is a long trek!  
LilSpookies  2016-06-11   0             
2016-06-11  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Summited Belford and Oxford this AM. Minimal snow, as reported by jenloe on 6/9/16. Essentially summer time conditions at Belford/Oxford now. Lots of people out on this hike today with great weather. Missouri Mountain looks to still have large swaths of snow over the route. 
madadraw1  2016-06-11   0             
2016-06-09  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Was a great day doing both Belford and Oxford! The trail is 99% free of snow, as there are only maybe five patches you have to cross over to get to the summit. To give you an idea, I wore tennis shoes the entire way and my feet were fine. There is a tad bit more snow on the traverse but nothing unmangeable and it is easy to get around most of it. The trickiest part was the creek crossing before getting into Missouri Gukch. The creek is quite swollen but with trekking poles I made it across safe and dry. Feels like a mid-summer hike. Get out there this weekend and do it! 
jenloe0624  2016-06-09   0      2       
2016-06-05  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: The trail was in good condition. We started the hike at around 7:00 a.m. At the stream crossing, the water was high but passable in both directions. We benefited from the aid of hiking poles for stability on the logs (no bridge). There were/are still patches of snow on the trail starting at treeline. The trail was clear of snow much of the way past the Missouri Gulch fork (the lower steps and switchbacks). Higher up, there were a few patches of snow on which we threw on our microspikes. From the top of the switchbacks (13,700' ish) there was nearly continuous snow until the final summit block. It was soft enough to not need microspikes, but not so soft as to posthole. We took our time with the hike and summited at around 12:30. We wore shells close to the summit due to some wind. By the end of the hike, it was quite warm and we ended with just poly t-shirts. Gaiters are still recommended. For the trip down the snow had softened enough that we didn't bother with microspikes. There is evidence of recent glassading but we didn't bother as it would have resulted in wet posteriors. 
mountainbrian  2016-06-06   3             
2016-06-05  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Virtually Summer Conditions! There are a few patches of snow so you may want microspikes in the early morning (I did). But most people were cruising up without them. Leave flotation, crampons and ax at home. Bring sunblock. I had intended to stay another night and climb Missouri in the morning. There is a ton of snow up there and it is really warm. Here you need the whole arsenal (crampons, ax, flotation and avy gear). 
Nelson  2016-06-05   0   2          
2016-05-28  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Didn't see any conditions updates over the past week so figured I'd chime in. We brought snowshoes but never used them and ended up stashing them at the trail split above treeline. I don't see any reason to bring them at all. There are a few longer patches but they are intermittent and it'd be more of a pain in the butt to take them on and off. Spikes were good on the ridge. You can mostly avoid the snow for the first 1/2 - 2/3 of the ridge but they definitely came in handy up higher. The snow was fairly deep in spots from the summit of Belford to the bottom of saddle on the way to Oxford. It wasn't as much of an issue heading to Ox but was fairly tiring on the way back. 
skik2000  2016-05-31   0      1       
2016-05-25  Route: Northwest Gully
Info: Continuous good snow from base of gully to summit. Did not start skinning until the gully entrance. Ridge to Oxford is mostly snow with some bare spots. Northwest gully off of Oxford is in good shape with continuous snow for 1,000 ft + ski descent. 
jmc5040  2016-05-25   5             
2016-05-12  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Climbed Belford from Elkhead Pass today after doing N face on Missouri. Descended standard route. I still had my crampons on, but spikes would have been fine for the descent. Snowshoes needed on descent from cabin to creek. 
bmcqueen  2016-05-12   2             
2016-03-13  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: The tree blocking the road to the trailhead is easy to drive around, Anything with low clearance will struggle for the last mile before the trailhead. The trail is well packed for the most part, but there are sections which will present you with significant postholing in the afternoons. Flotation isn't necessarily necessary, but is recommended. Keep in mind it's supposed to snow this week so conditions are likely to change significantly. I personally skinned up the Couloir due East of the Northwest ridge. Had some difficulty skinning at times since the windpacked snow was not providing traction while switch backing up the couloir. Ended up climbing the top half of the couloir for that reason. 
zrgraf  2016-03-14   2             
2016-02-26  Route: Northwest Gulch
Info: Plan on walking to the trailhead from almost four miles below. The road is icy and snowpacked. A fallen tree partly blocks it 1.1 miles above the ranch. Only one wheeled vehicle had made it past the fallen tree, and that was a Dodge Ram wearing chains; the driver said that the chains were "absolutely" necessary. There is a bit of parking about a quarter mile above the ranch; otherwise there is enough snow that parking options are limited. It appears that there was excellent trench until the storms of the last few weeks. Someone had partly refreshed it prior to the latest dusting of snow, but didn't get past the halfway point between the stream crossing and the cabin. I finished refreshing the trench to timberline. Snowshoes were very useful for this. Above timberline, things are wind-scoured enough that, while the trail is covered in snow, it isn't deep enough to speak of trench (Photo 1). I climbed the Northwest Gulch (Dawson 1.4.4) which parallels the standard Northwest Ridge route. There was plenty of snow for climbing in the lower reaches of the couloir; a few inches of fresh snow sitting on bulletproof slab which made for an excellent plunge-step descent. Closer to the summit ridge, snow is thin to non-existent (Photo 2). The Belford side of the the connecting ridge to Oxford has some snow on it (Photo 3). Some people may appreciate traction, though I did not use it. I was glad for my ice axe. The Oxford side is clean with the exception of a few snowfields (Photo 4). 
RWSchaffer  2016-02-27   4   2   1       
2016-01-23  Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: Definitely not as much snow coverage as I though. Snowshoes are a plus when you get to the cabin around the treeline. Didn‘t make it to the summit, only got about 12,500...just below the outcropping along the ridge. Missouri Mtn, however, has some nice coverage, but signs of avalanche activity. 
ajf1126  2016-01-24   1             

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