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Mt. Bierstadt  
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Route  Conditions Information  Posted By   Posted On    Photos  Comments Likes Dislikes    
2014-05-31  West Slopes  Great day for this 14‘er. Microspikes on way up, snowshoes on return. Even with snowshoes, still postholing mid and lower sections. Got snowed on a little bit but cleared fast. Recommend getting out early. We left TH at 7am (late start) and snow softened around 10am. jonandmalia   2014-05-31 4     Edit Delete 
2014-05-20  West Slopes  The large and flat meadow/swamp leading up to the first ridge is covered by about three feet of snow and in the morning is icy enough to hike up without post-holing too much. The remainder of the hike has several areas of dry ground and hard windblown snow that you will support quite a bit of weight so there is no worry about post-holing. the summit approach is a field of bare boulders on the left and a large snowy cornice on the right. After 12:00 the snow in the meadow has melted enough to make traversing it without skis or snowshoes almost impossible. If you do not bring the proper equipment or descend too late you will spend at least two hours in the meadow leading up to the trailhead. pianoz   2014-05-21 2     Edit Delete 
2014-05-10  West Slopes  Road from winter closure to TH mostly free of snow. Once you hit the TH, solid snow all the way to the summit. Snow shoes definitely helpful, but not absolutely needed (you will post hole in the willows). curt86iroc   2014-05-12  0  3    Edit Delete 
2014-04-26  West Slopes  Road is dry up to the winter road closure. Past the closure, the road still has 3-4 ft of snow. Wet slab avalanche activity can be seen at certain points across the road, so I would be weary of any shortcuts between road switchbacks. The willows are solid under snowshoes until about noon at which point I was post holing with 30" snowshoes and had to dig myself out once with my shovel, so start by 6 AM from the winter road closure if possible to avoid this. Past the willows up the mountain, snow is patchy to the point that a ski descent wouldn‘t be much fun anymore. Even so, we were comfortable with snowshoes up to 13,500‘ on our way up and stayed in our micro spikes until the willows on the way down. Wind was characteristic of Bierstadt. Temps over the day ranged from mid-20‘s to mid-30‘s. vidoona   2014-04-27  0     Edit Delete 
2014-03-25  West Slopes  Road is plowed like always. Snowshoes are a must. We used them to about 13600 for traction and because it was easier than taking them off. Still post holed at times. From the TH we shot straight towards the ridge and stayed to the west of the main trail as the main trail looked to have some deep snow. Picture is of the slopes looking back towards the trail head. bradyj   2014-03-25 1  4    Edit Delete 
2014-03-15  West Slopes  285 was clear and well paved up to Guanella camp (2 mi and ~800‘ elevation from trailhead). Road was well packed from snowmobiles and others. Once on trail, snowshoes are required, and even with them you might posthole. About ~200‘ above treeline, microspikes or crampons would be extremely helpful but not necessarily required. alanonymous   2014-03-16 2     Edit Delete 
2014-03-08  West Slopes  Pretty nice packed down path. we turned around at 13,200‘ and it looked like the path went all the way to the summit. definitely needed snowshoes for the day. we talked to a couple of skiers that had to take their skis off right before the summit and they said they were post holing. vusteph   2014-03-09  0     Edit Delete 
2014-02-28  West Slopes  The winter closure is about 1.6mi from the trailhead and after about .65mi we cut through the trees to avoid the slopes along the road. Deep snow in the willows which made for the occasional waist-deep post hole. Showshoes are definitely recommended until 12,800‘ at which point it is windblown and bare in places (microspikes would be helpful). BlenderHead   2014-03-01  0     Edit Delete 
2013-12-21  West Slopes  Guanella Pass road closed just past Guanella Campground. So this will add about 800 vertical to the standard summer route. The road is 4-6 inches of power, with at least one decently well packed trail. Snowshoes/microspikes/crampons not required for the road, but very helpful. Once you reach the summer TH, the boardwalks are mostly buried under snow, snowshoes not required, but helpful. Microspikes and crampons highly recommended. Some deep snow drifts on the upper slopes, but with careful route-finding, shouldn‘t be much of an issue. ACERyGuy007   2013-12-21  0     Edit Delete 
2013-12-03  West Slopes  It was a nicely-packed trail until today‘s storm brought 4-6in to the Werst Slopes. The trail is well-defined and somewhat packed until you reach the boulder field, and then trail-finding becomes slightly difficult. After Tuesday 12/3 expect drifts up to 2 feet in some places. Snowshoes would be nice, but I managed in knee-high gaiters and microspikes (partly because I was too lazy to stop and make the switch to shoes). Tyler Phillips   2013-12-03 1     Edit Delete 
2013-11-28  West Slopes  Guanella pass is open all the way to the trailhead - made it easy with FWD and snow tires, just a little icy in the early AM. Trail is mostly packed snow, left the snowshoes in the car and didn‘t have many problems, a couple post holes here and there but no big deal. Brought microspikes and probably could have used them in a couple spots, but just rock hopped instead. Killer weather (and sunrise) today. adamking84   2013-11-28 2     Edit Delete 
2013-11-27  West Slopes  Trail all snow covered, but really packed. No need for snowshoes, around 13,000ft lots of exposed rocks. Ascent trails are nicely made, decent trails....well its seems everyone makes their own. dag2323   2013-11-27 3     Edit Delete 
2013-11-25  West Slopes  Calf- to Knee-deep wind blown powder for much of the way to the summit today. I decided against flotation, but there were definitely a few places when I wished I had my snow shoes. bmcqueen   2013-11-25  0     Edit Delete 
2013-10-27  Bierstadt, Sawtooth, Evans  The trail approaching Bierstadt is somewhat muddy at lower elevation, then somewhat icy at higher elevation. Traction is very nice to have, but not essential. On the way to the Sawtooth, a bit of snow conceals the gaps between boulders and makes for a little postholing, but by in large, the Sawtooth ridge is free of any difficult snow or ice. The traverse to Evans is similarly tame - mostly a pure talus scramble with no interference from snow or ice. The descent gully near the Sawtooth is very navigable, though a bit slippery with loose snow. The marshy section at the foot of the gully among the willows is icy but still quite wet and swampy. This was the only place where my feet got wet (soaked), and I was sporting Gore-Tex trail runners. Michael Underwood   2013-10-28  0     Edit Delete 
2013-10-26  West Slopes  Several icy spots in the willows. Packed trail above willows. Mud in the willows on the return. Recommend MicroSpikes & pole. The rocks at the stream crossing were icy in the morning. There is a log bridge upstream about 100 yds. MountainHiker   2013-10-26 1     Edit Delete 
2013-10-20  West Slopes  Snowshoes were not needed but I would highly recommend microspikes because the trail is very icy, primarily in the willows. The trail was well packed in the lower section but disappeared around 13,000‘ in 6" snow drifts. Cairns are still visible and the route was generally discernible. MonGoose   2013-10-22  0     Edit Delete 
2013-10-13  West Slopes  Very muddy at the start until you start climbing. After that, the trail is mostly dry until you get closer to the top, and there‘s packed snow from there. I hiked the mud in boots and the rest of the trail in new balance sneakers. dpm200   2013-10-13  0     Edit Delete 
2013-10-09  West Slopes  Only a little snow left over from Friday‘s storm. Mostly bare. Took MicroSpikes but didn‘t use them. image MountainHiker   2013-10-09 1     Edit Delete 
2013-09-28  West Slopes  The river is running steady, but your feet will stay dry if your shoes are at least water resistant. Dusting of snow along the west ridge, but you can avoid any patches by choosing one of the half dozen trails up the west slope. Very little snow on the summit pitch, beautiful scenery with all the leaves changing! wisedog1   2013-10-05 1     Edit Delete 
2013-09-16  West Slopes  The trail up to timberline is in pretty good shape, but the small creek that you must cross is currently running very high. The only way to continue towards the summit is to remove shoes and wade through knee deep rapids. It‘s completely doable, but be prepared to get wet...many people took a tumble. Past the creek the trail is great until about 13,500, where it became very snowy and whiteout conditions prevailed until the actual summit where it actually cleared up a bit. Bring spikes, dress warm and you‘ll be fine. Slim Pickins   2013-09-16 4     Edit Delete 

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