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|Conditions Information||Posted By||Posted On|
|2016-05-22||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Climbed and skiied the Northwest Slopes of Huron Sunday. I was able to pick my way down the North face skiing but it is extremely wind scoured and I wouldn't recommend it. East slopes looked much better. Ascent took about 4 hours. Parked 1/4 from Winfield before snowdrifts blocked road.
|2016-05-21||Route: East Slopes
Info: Creek was about 12" deep at Rockdale and easy to cross in an FJ Cruiser. A few big rocks that require a 4x4 are present along the road to Clohesy Lake. We could drive 1.5 out of the 3 miles to Clohesy Lake, crossing a few snow drifts about 12" deep on the way until we started hitting more snow drifts 2-3 feet deep and had to stop. I assume the snow has melted a bit since then and you'll be able to drive a bit further. Patches of snow were present to about 1/2 mile from Clohesy Lake at a big opening where snow became continuous. From the big opening with a sign along the road, you can decide to take a skin track to the right through the trees (poor option) or continue along the road (better option). Better to go around left (east) side of lake to get to the gully up to Lois Lake. Continuous snow from Clohesy Lake to the summit. Had to bootpack the steep part right before Lois Lake (wish I had ski crampons) and then from the Huron-Browns saddle to the summit. Saw some wet slide debris in the wider, lookers left branch at the bottom of the NE couloir on the way up. Saw tracks down the NE couloir from the summit which was our intended ski line, but we decided to ski north along the ridge back to the Huron-Browns saddle. When we crossed back underneath the couloir, the debris field was MUCH larger and it must have slid while we were on the summit, sometime between 9am and 10:30am. Glad we didn't ski it when we saw that. Rollerballs up to 3 feet in diameter. If you plan on skiing that line, do it before 9am since the sun hits it first thing in the morning and the snow must get hot fast with all the rocks surrounding the line. Started at 5:15am, summit around 10am, back to car at 1:15pm. 8 hours RT with lots of breaks.
|2016-05-14||Route: East Slopes
Info: Water levels are not at the peak, so we made the crossing at Rockdale in a stock 4x4. Snow drifts block the road soon thereafter. Dry patches alternate with snowdrifts almost to the lake. Lake is still snow covered, but thawing process is underway. Skinned up the gully to Lois lake and all the way to the saddle with Browns. Booting from there to the summit. At least 2 more ski parties on the peak yesterday. Skied NE couloir on East face back to Clohesy lake. Dropped in before 10am, slightly late, but snow was holding up fine, a bit on the heavy side. Some old avy debris on the apron. Steep and aesthetic line. ~8 hr RT with 4 am start.
|2016-05-14||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Road dry and passable for any vehicle to the 2WD site. Intermittent snow on the 4WD road preventing vehicular travel. It's probably several more weeks until it is all gone. Huron was in incredible form, and the surrounding mountains, particularly the three apostles, were absolutely stunning. Get an early start. The warm sun melts the snow creating mashed potatoes and wallowing even with snowshoes. Glissading down any face of Huron seems possible, and the snow is very consolidated with no avy indications. North gully is the exception and somewhat powdery still. Getting through the deep snow in the the trees will be your largest obstacle, particularly on an afternoon return. It is absolutely miserable with no effective method of locomation, with or sans snowshoes. Fortunately the section is small, but you will remember it. The rest of the mountain will support your snowshoes transport fine. A beautiful but windy day.
|2016-04-02||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Chaffee County Rd 390 was driveable with 4WD to Sheep Gulch TH at ~ 9.8K ft, just about 9.5 miles from the US 24 turnoff. But, beyond that, got abruptly worse. One small SUV was abandoned a few hundred feet passed, apparently trapped in the snow awaiting melt out. From there, the road/trail was fully snow-covered -- but compacted/snowmobile-compressed -- until about a half mile past Winfield. Snowshoes became an absolute must about a half mile before Banker Mine, where light post-holing began. From there, pristine snow (no trace of tracks or trench) for the rest of the route (though we left our trench beginnings for you!). Deep snow beginning at South Clear Creek TH. We took a steeper, more east-oriented line than the summer trail, and it was very difficult post-holing through the trees. Was a warm day, so where the top crust softened at all, a few feet of sugar waited beneath to make things extra challenging. Above timberline, snowshoes still an absolute must up until about 13.3K ft, where a thinner layer of snow filled gaps between larger rocks/talus. So from there to the top, either microspikes, good boots, or maybe crampons (depending on preference/style) were the ticket. Very large cornice over NE face to admire, right before summit. Low avalanche danger on NW slopes due to consolidation and slope, so pleasant plunge-stepping or glissading back to down to ~ 12.8K, then re-requiring snowshoes and a return to super post-holing, but at least with gravity assist thereafter.
|2016-03-13||Route: NW slopes DIRECT
Info: Parked at MO Gulch TH, However you can drive about a half mile past this point Sled track through Winfield all the way to about 1/4 mile below the upper TH where a skin track picks up Since there was no trench from the from the main TH, I followed the skin track (Lake Ann trail) for about a half mile where it turns around From there it was Brutal trench busting straight up the drainage to treeline (a thin layer of crust on top of knee to waist deep sugar) Snowshoes were also used in the upper basin to 12.8K, from there it is mostly windswept but a long talus hop to the top Good Luck! This was a tuff one...
|2015-10-04||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Trail was still in great condition. No snow until I got to the final climb on the peak‘s face, and even then it was just some really small patches. Tiny bit of ice but plenty of room to step around it. Most of the aspens have already lost their leaves, but there was still plenty of yellow left. Near freezing and very windy on the peak so bring layers!
|2015-09-21||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Weather man called for 0% chance of rain today, it was gorgeous out there today! Aspens starting to change color, fall is coming! Started at 7:15AM, made summit around 9:40AM. Whole hike took 4.5 hours. No snow anywhere close to trail. Several couples coming up as I was descending, a great day for a late start to a hike though.
|2015-09-16||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Huron Peak makes number 45 this summer for climbing fourteeners. My goal is to climb them all before the weather gets too bad. You can read more about this hike, other hikes, and my personal story at sunshineof1985.com. Enjoy! Time started: 12:05pm End time: 3:30pm Time to Summit: 2 hours Time to Descent: 1 hour and 15 minutes Overall Pace: 1.8 miles per hour GEAR (to bring): GPS, extra socks, phone, SPOT Satellite Tracker, Map, Topo Map from 14ers.com, hiking boots with 2 pairs of socks on, long-sleeve, wind-guard/raincoat, light weight puffy coat, lightweight gloves, day pack with water sack (64 oz), snacks. Road Condition: My Saturn sedan made it all the way to the upper 4WD trailhead. However, I did bottom out a couple times, but my car is okay! Trail Condition: It had just rained the previous two nights, but the trail was only damp. 99% free of mud. There was also a little bit of snow collecting in the last 500 feet of elevation. The trail is easy to follow and is a series of switchbacks the entire way. It was a nice, easy hike. However, it was windy and cold.
|2015-09-05||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: The road in was more potholed than the previous week due to rain in the early morning, but a 2WD car could still make it to at least the lower trailhead and, if you took it slow, probably very close to the upper trailhead as well. The hike itself was very quick, only took me 3 1/2 hours to get up and down, granted I ran a lot of the way down. Trial is in perfect condition with not snow or weather around except some cold gusty winds about 500 feet below the summit. Definitely one of the easier ones I‘ve done.
|2015-08-15||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: We camped out Friday night just a few miles from the trailhead off 390. We drove further down the road in the morning but reached a really steep rocky point in the road that was a little too rough for me to be comfortable driving through with my Rav4 so we parked just a little beyond the sign that says "4WD road to Huron Peak". We hiked from there maybe about 1.5 miles to the trailhead and the rest of the road looked fine beyond the one rough spot. When you come to the fork in the road make sure to stay right. You‘ll see a small lot with cars and know you‘re in the right place after about 15 minutes of walking from the fork. The hike itself was beautiful and not too busy, we started from the trailhead at 7:45, reached the peak at 10:30 and were back down to the base at 12:45. There were tons of people with really late starts as the storm clouds started rolling in and we were rained on just as we reached the base. Such a fun hike and a great weekend escape.
|2015-07-18||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: The trail was in unbelievably good condition. A near perfect trail up to about 13,500‘ when it becomes more rocky. Still a great trail just a little more improvising and less trail. We started the hike at 3:00 a.m., did the whole hike in the dark and did not have an ounce of trouble.
|2015-07-11||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Summer conditions. Some good water still in the wet meadow areas. Do the alpine a favor and walk in the mud. Lots of evidence of people choosing their boots over the fragile environment (cutting switchbacks, dodging mud puddles, etc...) Lots of wildflowers right now, bring your camera!
|2015-07-11||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Trail completely snow free to the summit. Very dry as well, minimal mud/wet spots. Go Get it!
|2015-07-04||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: No snow on the trail, no special gear required. Upper section of trail has running water down it with some mud, about 12,500-13,000. Can‘t be avoided without damaging area around trail. Nothing hiking boots can‘t handle. Offroad trail was fine, just a small stream crossing at the start. My friend took his 2006 Subaru Outback up it and I took my 2001 Nissan Pathfinder (crappy shocks) - both were fine. Pics and more info at link: https://everythingoutdoorscolorado.wordpress.com/2015/07/05/huron-peak/
|2015-07-03||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Great conditions up there. A bit of snow in several patches, but nothing really on the trail. The creek crossings do run a bit high in the afternoon due to snow melt, and there is a bit of mud and running water on the trail, but as long as you have good tread on your boots you‘ll be fine.
|2015-06-30||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Good to go. The pesky aforementioned snowfield in the basin is down to like a hundred feet long and not very deep. Summertime up there.
|2015-06-28||Route: North Ridge from Lulu Gulch
Info: A tiny bit of snow to contend with going up Browns, but otherwise dry the whole way. Standard route looked to be 99% dry
|2015-06-26||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: Hiked Huron on 6/26. The 4WD road is in good shape. A few rough spots but as long as you have good clearance you should be fine, although we did see a church van at the upper trailhead (props to them)...we got my buddy‘s Subaru up there last year but took my Jeep this time and it was way easier. Anyway, it was an absolutely beautiful day on the mountain. Camped at the trailhead and started the hike a little after 6:30am. As the other reports stated, no snow along the route until the basin and along a few portions of the upper route, which the husky was more excited about than we were, but nothing unmanageable. I did the hike in trail runners and didn‘t use my spikes - I would definitely recommend waterproof shoes as there is a lot of runoff above treeline. We postholed through the basin but it‘s not really a long enough stretch to worry about. Summited around 9:15 and had the obligatory beer...the weather was awesome so we stayed up there for about an hour before heading down at 10:15. Back to the trailhead at 12:15, so overall it took us about 3 hours up and 2 down. Solid day!
|2015-06-20||Route: Northwest Slopes
Info: The creek shortly above the upper trailhead is running pretty high - a pole is definitely helpful for the crossing. There are currently 2 areas of significant snow on the route: one in the flat basin just above 12,000 (Photo 1), and then on the NW-facing slopes from about 12,700‘ to just below the saddle at 13,400‘ (Photo 2). The last very short section, maybe 100‘ or so, of the summit ridge (Photo 3) has a large amount of snow as well. Despite a light overnight freeze (evidenced by the presence of frost and ice on the trail), the crust on top of the snow in the basin was unsupportive even around 7AM, and downright horrendous on the return. We brought snowshoes and were happy to have them for this section, although at times we broke through anyway. The second snowfield was more consolidated on the way up - easily done with microspikes, although snowshoes worked as well - but again, a rotten mess on the way down. Glissading seemed to be the best option for descent, as the snow was too deep and soft for plunge-stepping, but even there it was hard to maintain speed. I would definitely recommend, at a minimum, some type of traction if going up early in the morning, as well as an ice axe if planning to glissade on the descent, and snowshoes if you don‘t want to posthole thigh-deep crossing the basin. Other than that, it was a pretty easy hike in summer-like conditions, and beautiful scenery. Lots of people out!