Crestone Conditions

Colorado 14er peak questions, condition requests and other info. 14er Trip Reports, Condition Reports
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Crestone Conditions

Postby Beas » Fri Oct 19, 2012 12:51 am

I wanted to climb at least one more 14er before the snow starts to really pack in. I have my sights set on Crestone Peak and was wondering if anyone had climbed it recently and could give me an update on any ice or snow along the route. This Saturday 10/20 looks to be somewhat warm and I would be stoked if I could climb Crestone Peak without having to buy crampons. Thanks!
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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby B[3] » Fri Oct 19, 2012 8:51 am

Doubtful. When I summited Rito Alto yesterday, I was glad to have microspikes. The snow has been windblown and is quite variable--in some places, I was sinking into drifts over my boots and in others, the snow was hard enough to walk on with my microspikes.
view from Rito Alto.jpg
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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby brech » Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:16 am

We did the Needle on the 20th, it was awesome!
Friday night was very windy, but it was reasonable by Sat morning and became very nice as the day went on.
Broken Hand Pass had some snow in places slighted above boot level but was all quite safe, the ridge and s face had some spotty snow that was either avoidable or very minimal. And the visibility was incredible, we did not use any traction up, we did put on micro spikes coming down through Broken Hand Pass but could have done it without them.
Hope you were able to get out, if not next time trust your gut and go see what happens.
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I did post a report.

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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby jdorje » Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:22 am

There's been no new snow for a week or two, but more is forecast for later this week. As of now south-facing routes are probably passable.
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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby Alpineair » Tue Oct 23, 2012 10:49 am

How was the road up to the upper TH ?
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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby brech » Tue Oct 23, 2012 11:29 am

It's bumpy but my friend made it up in a subaru, so you need a decent clearance and 4wd is good. Quite a few people on it for hunting.

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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby Neil » Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:20 pm

brech wrote:It's bumpy but my friend made it up in a subaru, so you need a decent clearance and 4wd is good. Quite a few people on it for hunting.

I second this. I've made it up the road twice (including after the last storm...totally dry) in an Outback. I wouldn't want anything less than an Outback.
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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby Justin9 » Tue Nov 06, 2012 1:14 pm


Wondering if anyone has been up Crestone Peak lately? Even with the few weeks of warm weather, I would guess that there is snow in the gulley? Any opinions on wether or not microspikes and ice axe will be sufficient or if someone with only minor winter experience should just stay home...?

Thanks for any info and advise!

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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby SherpaSara » Tue Nov 06, 2012 1:32 pm


I was up at S. Colony yesterday to try for the Needle. I only went up to the "crux/scrambling" section to get up to Broken Hand Pass, which was holding a bit of snow (up to mid-calf in some areas). I ended up turning back, since I didn't have my ax with me and only yaktrax. All southern aspects were clear of snow. Didn't see the Peak, but it probably is snow-free for most of Red Gully based on what everything else looked like up there. Snow is supposedly coming to the Sangres this weekend, though.


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Re: Crestone Conditions

Postby stbanpiro » Tue Nov 06, 2012 4:38 pm

I hiked the Needle the last Sunday, there are few inches of snow from the Colony Lake to the Broken Hand Pass. I didn't use microspike but I used the ax going down. The upper west side of Needle was clean.

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