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|Conditions Information||Posted By||Posted On|
|2014-06-19||Route: Rio Nieve
Info: Rio Nieve line is in from base to near summit, although it is a little thin at the bottom. This line won‘t be around much longer, maybe a week. Standard route to summit is 99% snow free, save a few patches up high. The junction with the skyline trail is about 30‘ past the third stream crossing. Missing it will mean adding miles to your trip and make for an even longer day.
|2012-09-01||Route: East Slopes
Info: Reiterating from below -- The blowdown area is just below treeline. Didn‘t have GPS, but probably around 11,700 feet. Do not go downhill and do not hike up to the sandy area above. You want to be contouring or going slightly uphill -- the trail (Opal Lake, nee Skyline) can be followed. Above treeline the trail becomes much better defined. There are a few campsites around the Opal Lake trail junction, and a couple more off to the right (north) along the Opal Lake trail a few hundred feet after it starts. You can even go higher; I saw a couple of ledges around 11,000 feet that had great views down into the meadow and would make awesome campsites, but had no nearby water.
|2012-06-27||Route: East Slopes Classic
Info: Don‘t let smoke from the fires near Pagosa Springs change your mind about this hike. The smoke changes directions so it isn‘t a problem. The entire route is clear of snow and in good shape. Be careful not to head down in the area of dead fall. Remember that you are supposed to contour around the mountain, not go down. If you are headed down, stop and hike up the grassy slope and you will find the correct trail. We encountered lots of rain so take rain gear. You will need it!!! You will find several good camp sites at Weminuche Pass and water in the creek. No fires allowed.
|2012-06-22||Route: Rincon La Vaca
Info: Very smoky from the Little Sand Fire but no snow except for a few steps between RGP and the window. Camped along the Rincon La Vaca trail and attempted to follow that route per Roach‘s 13ers book. Appears that the trail has been moved or I have an old version of the book. At 4.5 miles up the Rincon LaVaca trail we were above 12,200’. It then says to hike 1.3 miles up the Opal Lake trail to 12,200’. Not seeing a junction, we continued to Opal Lake, saw a trail in the distance and headed a bit back down, then x-country to it. It was a good trail for accessing the Window, but involved a lot of rock-hopping-balancing to get to RGP.
|2012-06-21||Route: East Slopes
Info: The east slopes route on Rio Grande Pyramid is almost snow free as of 6/16/12. A small snow crossing remains at about 12,800‘ but no snow gear is needed. The Opal Lakes Trail heading west off of Weminuche Pass is faint at best but picks up about 100‘ off of the Weminuche Trail. The route has more bear scat than on any Colorado trail I‘ve seen.
|2012-05-27||Route: Weminuche Pass/Skyline Trail
Info: Over Memorial Day weekend we went to climb Rio Grande Pyramid and the two 13ers to the north. The road is totally dry all the way to the Rio Grande Reservoir/Thirty Mile Campground and any 2wd can make it. Snowshoes are NOT needed. In fact, no crampons or micro-spikes are needed for these three peaks. If going to The Window, Window Peak, or Pt. 13,017, there is more snow over on those peaks and traction may be useful. Also, trip reports on Rio Grande Pyramid mention that there is no water on Weminuche Pass and to pack it in. This is NOT true! The creek that crosses the Weminuche Trail at 10,620 is flowing in full force! And this is right at the junction with the Skyline Trail where the two carins and log posts are. And there are some lakes/ponds that are on the pass east of the trail that I think would have water year round. You just may have to hike over to them if camping next to the Weminuche Trail. I‘ve got pixs if anyone is heading this way and would like to see ‘em.
Info: There is no need for snowshoes, axe, crampons, or microspikes when using the Skyline / Opal Lake trail. A little snow here and there, but not a problem. Of course, I left my camera back at camp, so no pics. But Britt may post a TR. Also did the two 13ers to the north of RGP. The winds weren‘t bad on Sunday.