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|Conditions Information||Posted By||Posted On|
|2015-06-13||Route: South Slope
Info: The road is now completely free of snow. Started at 5:30 AM and ascended with micro-spikes. Used snowshoes on the 2nd half of the descent due to post-holing. If you don‘t spend a lot of time at the summit, or start earlier you can do the whole descent with just spikes before the snow starts to thaw. I personally feel like the southwest ridge route should be avoided for a little while longer due to all of the wet slide activity above the route (see photo); however, there were many people climbing the avy debris up to the ridge.
|2015-06-13||Route: Southwest Ridge from Fourmile Creek
Info: Started at 6 am. Trail was very easy to follow with little snow problems till after the last mining camp. Spikes or snowshoes recommend. We just followed the postholes to the summit. A few groups without spikes did not risk the final asend to the summit which would have been very sketcy without spikes. The snow on the way down seemed to posthole pretty easy so just sliding down seemed to be the solution. Overall the trail is easily defined by the old foot holes and the snow will be melting fast.
|2015-06-11||Route: West Slopes from Iowa Gulch
Info: Had a look at the route from the parking area today and did‘nt like it. Lots of slides over the route and any good alternatives . I went up Dyer instead.
|2015-06-07||Route: Southwest Ridge from Fourmile Creek
Info: Road was in good condition up to 11.2 miles. A few easy snow drifts up to that point with the snow line after 11.2 miles.
|2015-05-31||Route: South Slope
Info: Similar to the report from Saturday. We parked at the Leavick Rd turnoff about a mile or so before the old mine site on the road. Put skis on from there and were able to skin the road all the way without removing skis. Snow was hardpack in the AM due to cloudy skies and people were walking up on boots, skins still stuck well. The winter ascent is still in affect, meaning you climb to the SE ridge of Sherman then the summit as there is a solid cornice guarding most of the Sheridan/Sherman saddle from the Four Mile Creek side. Started our ski down under cloudy skies around 1130a, snow was still hardpack up top, but by the time we hit 13k the sun was starting to peak through and the snow was corning up nicely. If you hit the slope at the right time it should be a full on corn harvest. Back down on the road the snow was melting fast and all those without flotation were postholing. The road is melting out fast and I‘d imagine that very soon the snow will no longer be continuous on the road and there will be large patches of dirt/rock to navigate on skis. The upper slopes are holding TONS of snow and will be a great ski for quite a bit longer.
|2015-05-30||Route: Southwest Ridge from Fourmile Creek
Info: Parked at the winter TH about a mile before Leavick. The road is covered with snow the rest of the way, some places between 1-2 ft deep, so it will likely be some time before it is drivable to the closed gate. Microspikes were all that were needed for the ascent as the freeze the night before ensured the snow was thoroughly consolidated. Perfect conditions with little wind on the mountain and blue skies all day. The SW ridge is entirely covered in deep snow and seems solid, but I stayed away from the cornices. Get off the mountain early if it is a warm sunny day, because on the descent postholing became a problem, even with snow shoes.
|2015-05-30||Route: West Slopes from Iowa Gulch
Info: I was able to go one mile past the cut off before I parked. The snow totally covers the road for a mile then clears out enough to go the last mile to the trailhead on dirt. I started a 3pm and needed snowshoes on the road and to the Sherman Sheridan saddle. Beyond the saddle the snow was solid enough to walk on with just boots.
|2015-05-24||Route: South Slope
Info: Members kylepb, phantomchameleon, and I met up on Sunday to ski/snowshoe Sherman. I know, I know...another CR on Sherman. Yes, this is possibly redundant but two things I thought should be mentioned: 1) The snow there continues to be off the chart right now and the skiing is unreal. 2) This is my first ski video. (MoneyMike: you are a badass and a motivator) Hopefully this encourages others. Being from AZ, snow wasn‘t really an option and I actually only played in snow once at 15 y.o. in Flagstaff. I learned to ski in Jan. 2014 at 39 y.o. when I took my first lesson at Loveland. I continued to ski last season and this one approximately 25 times. I think I picked it up quickly? In December ‘14 I took the Avy 1 course which required an AT setup, I rented a few times to practice and confirm I liked it, and I bought my AT set up this April. I have attempted 8 summits and only 4 were skied from. Given the lack of bluebird skies recently, not bad for a complete newbie! (I won‘t quit the day job for moving making either, haha) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJe_SgmT0SE BTW, best rookie error so far: Forgetting to turn the brake on while removing skins and having one ski take off (and almost lost) 300‘ down the wrong side of the mountain! yikes, that was scary...and a great lesson learned.
|2015-05-18||Route: South Slope
Info: I was able to sneak in a ski of Sherman this morning with my sister, before the next heavy snowstorm started (it‘s supposed to last through tomorrow). Sherman! Normally, it‘s not much to look at, but right now Sherman is a thing of beauty. We drove to about a mile from Leavick and got continuous snow from there to the top. The ski down wasn‘t much fun at first - visibility deteriorated to the point where we couldn‘t see beyond 40 feet, and the beautifully thorough snow coverage and dense cloud/fog made everything look white except one‘s ski partner. We got a bit lost, but were able to traverse our way to the White Ridge face (above the drainage)...from there, we were able to see the drainage enough to find our way back down. After that, it was smooth sailing! So, go get Sherman while it‘s good, bring a GPS or avoid bad weather, and wear sunscreen! (even if you‘re in a cloud almost all morning, the sun can still figure out a way to burn you, as I am painfully realizing now!) Photos: 1) Sheridan coverage 2) Approaching the "crux" slope with the best view of Sherman we got all morning 3) Much snowy prettiness (from 13,600-ish) 4) Topping the "crux" with a brief moment of sun, got a little bit off-route due to poor visibility and ended up bootpacking steeper terrain to the summit ridge 5) Last summit push - another brief moment where clouds lifted 6) Fluffy! One more rare moment with visibility on Sherman‘s summit before the ski
|2015-05-16||Route: Southwest Ridge from Fourmile Creek
Info: Skied the south face today. got up early and had a splitter day and the mountain completely to myself. There was not any wind and no clouds until around 8:30. I got back to my car around 9:30 at which point the clouds starting looking meaty. Coverage was phenomenal. The snowpack was very stable and made for an easy skin right to the summit.
|2015-05-07||Route: South Slope
Info: Skied the south slopes route on Sherman today and found a LOT of snow on that mountain. We parked at the normal winter closure (~10,900‘) and were able to skin the road to 12,000‘ before turning right and heading up the south slopes. The snowpack was stable and there was little evidence of avalanche activity in the area. The gully leading to the summit had good snow with a few rocks poking through but all could be avoided on the descent. Here are some photos...
|2015-05-02||Route: South Slope
Info: Skinned up and skied down on great snow. Essentially, 3:30 up and 50 mins down. Just started to soften up on the way down but was firm on the way up. Here are a few shots of coverage as of today. GPS: 9.83 mile RT and just over 3K in gain from the truck. (parked at 10,900)
|2015-04-11||Route: South Slope
Info: Not to duplicate the info in the previous report, as it gives you all the ski beta. Snow is nicely consolidated on the south slope and it is perfect for any beginners looking to do a snow climb. Towards the top of the drainage the snow is starting to turn into ice from the freeze thaw cycles and traction is highly recommended. If you go early enough the snow will still be frozen and no flotation is required. County Road 18 is completely dry until about a mile below the Leavick site where it turns into 2 feet of snow. All and all beauty day in the mountains. Had the summit all to my self. Car to summit to car took 3hr 58min.
|2015-04-10||Route: South Slope
Info: Skied from the summit, but there‘s a band of rocks about 700‘ from the summit. Was able to keep our skis on for most of the road, sneaking through thin sections on the side, but there were a handful of big dirt patches where we took our skis off. A little bit of snow fell the night before and was blown into the gully, making for some pretty good turns between the rock band and the road
|2015-03-28||Route: South Slope
Info: The road can be driven until one mile below leavick mine which sounds like standard winter closure (and same condition as was posted 3/25). There was evidence of vehicles attempting to drive past this point and apparently becoming stuck (holes in snow with sticks for traction). There were a handful of groups on variations of the south slopes today. Groups favored the eastern side of the south slopes which has lower slope angles and less snow than the middle of the south face. We did not observe any evidence of unstable wind slabs which had been mentioned in CAIC reports for several days this week. There is a small cornice in saddle between Sherman and Sheridan, and it was warm enough today that wet slides should be a consideration. We found a ski-able line from Sherman‘s summit to the car with some tight spots between exposed rocks on the eastern side of south slopes and two very brief sections of walking (rocks on upper middle portion of south slopes and bare ground near 12,000‘). Snow coverage on the road below treeline is thin in places and appears to be melting quickly.
|a day in the life||2015-03-28||1|
|2015-03-25||Route: Southwest Ridge from Fourmile Creek
Info: Road up four mile creek was in good condition. Some snow, but a 2wd car could make it to about a mile below leavick. From there, used snowshoes until I had to turn around. Made great time as the snow was in good condition, however it quickly turned into a whiteout about 200ft below hilltop mine. Had to turn around because of conditions and time, as I had places to be. Could have made it if I had more time on my hands, but since I was pressed for time I couldn‘t wait out the storm. Couldn‘t see the ridge at all, but I heard it had a large cornice the day before and the slope looked very loaded (at least the small bit I could see). Recommend crampons, ice axe, and snowshoes/skis. Good luck, will be trying again soon!
|2015-02-14||Route: Southwest Ridge from Fourmile Creek
Info: Road is fine for passenger cars up to the normal winter closure site. Snowshoes were a big help on the approach, though you could make it without them. Road was mostly snow-free after that and can easily be navigated, though microspikes/yaktrax help. The standard route goes toward the ridge after the Hilltop Mine, but it‘s covered in snow and overhung with cornices. Instead, you can go NW up the face and re-join the standard route at the flat area on top. There were snow fields up the face and along the ridge to the top, but nothing that would have required crampons. The ridge to ~14000 feet was extremely windy, but was fine at the summit.
|2015-01-21||Route: South Slope
Info: I climbed today via the SW Ridge and skied the South slopes. The ascent is as expected. I had to take the skis off twice to cross bare spots and I used crampons and an ax to get up on the ridge. The top 1000 ft of skiing was horrible. The slope is completely wind hammered. I had to down climb 200 ft. To get by rocks. I was incredibly lucky with the weather. Although it snowed a lot in Fairplay it didn‘t start snowing on the route till after 2pm.
|2015-01-17||Route: South Slope
Info: Did the South Slope with asarsam yesterday, it was sunny, cold and windy. Sherman got 5-7 inches of fresh snow the night before, deep powder about 12,500 feet. Sherman shows some great ski from summit to about 12,000 feet. We broke trail from winter closure to all the way to the summit, but about 11,500 feet the blowing snow covered all our tracks. We used snowshoes going up and just micro-spikes coming down. Driving with my Subaru Outback to the winter closure TH was not a problem, some snow and icy spots here and there.
|2015-01-02||Route: South Slope
Info: Snow was continuous from the road to the summit. We used snowshoes for the entire ascent and I rode from the summit back down to the road. We also used snowshoes along the road though the snow was a little light in a few places. The trailhead was just as noted on 12/31. Vehicle tracks, partially snowed in, went up to the traditional winter closure. I parked my stock Tacoma with average tires maybe 1.5 miles back from that spot. A couple other high-clearance vehicles parked alongside me.