Colony Baldy  
Condition Updates  
 
Route: Horn Creek
Posted On: 2020-06-28, By: angry
Info: Summer conditions. Minor bushwhacking below tree line. Some cairns along the way. Descended a completely different line that followed a game trail back to the rainbow trail. 
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Route: North-Northeast Ridge from Horn Creek
Posted On: 2020-06-22, By: supranihilest
Info: The Rainbow Trail from Horn Creek Trailhead is quite nice, actually - not too rocky and very moderate grades. The trail lasts for about 3 miles and goes past the Macey Lakes trial before cutting off into the forest. There's a very faint trail and many small cairns (2-3 rocks) along the way and I didn't have too much trouble following it, even in the dark. The long and short is if it gets too steep on the flanks go back to the crest. Above treeline there's plenty of rock strewn about but not enough to cause trouble. The ridge ascends steeply right above treeline then gently most of the way to the summit. There are some cliffs to the northwest that caught me unawares in the dark but if it's daylight they're easy to avoid. Phenomenal views of the Crestones, Kit Carson massif, Adams family, and Humboldt. 
 
Route: East Ridge from Horn Creek TH
Posted On: 2020-05-13, By: HikerGuy
Info: Summer conditions. Stay on south side of ridge to avoid remaining snow patches at upper treeline. The Sangres are quite dry this year, worried about fire season down there. 
 
Route: From Horn Creek Campground
Posted On: 2019-11-12, By: BobbyFinn
Info: Parking area has some snow, but it's mostly dry. Rainbow Trail is snowy, but well packed down from ATVs until a bit before the Macey Lakes trail. The ruts are icy - microspikes would be good. Sunny aspects are mostly clear. Beyond where the ruts end, there's a trench to the turnoff. The turnoff from Rainbow to the ridge is unmarked, but there are footprints. There's a good 'trench' from Rainbow Trail to treeline. The footprints braid a bit early on, but they all end up at the same place. Snow varies from 0-10 inches deep, mostly about 5-6 inches deep. Most of the cairns are visible. Microspikes would be good for the steep part just before treeline, but I managed without them. We didn't use flotation and we didn't wish we had. The terrain above treeline is mostly clear of snow. What remains is either easily avoidable or easy enough to just walk through. 
 
Route: Horn Creek TH
Posted On: 2019-08-06, By: IHikeLikeAGirl
Info: No snow, at all...nada, zilch, zip. Mosquitoes, biting flies, and other annoying insects...YES! Deet, deet, and more deet barely stopped these monsters...mainly below treeline, on the ridge, but they still made their presence known beyond treeline, on occasion. 
 
Route: NE Ridge
Posted On: 2019-05-27, By: RWinters
Info: Rainbow trail still has intermittent snow after 2 miles from Horn Creek TH. After leaving the trail snow is sporadic on the ridge from 10,170 to 10,400. Solid snow picks up at 10,400 ft and then becomes consistent after 10,600 ft to 11,700 ft. Ridge to summit is hit and miss with snow. Cold conditions and a freeze make snow travel above and below tree line a breeze. Once it warms up it is posthole-a-paloozza! 
 
Route: NE Ridge
Posted On: 2019-01-06, By: RWinters
Info: â€œ8 of snow at the trailhead. I wore snowshoes from the parking lot until tree line. The first two miles could be done without flotation but snow depth varies from dry ground to 2 feet of snow. Once you leave the trail snow is thin through all the deadfall. The snow a few hundred feet higher is deep and absolutely requires flotation. Hope for tracks. We broke trail and it was plenty of work with the sugary snow and steep grade, Slopes from the brislecone on up are expectedly windswept with pockets of filled in snow. We ditched the shoes at tree line around 11,700 feet. 
 
Route: From Horn Creek Trailhead
Posted On: 2018-11-18, By: WildWanderer
Info: First 3 miles was a mix of mud, ice, and snow. I wore my snowshoes the entire way (but didn't really need to). After the cutoff after Macey Creek snowshoes were necessary. I broke trail from the cutoff just after Macey Creek. From here until the bristle cone pines it was a long slog, postholing 2-3 feet with every step. The snow was like cotton candy. Snowshoes are a must, crampons and ice axe weren't necessary. No wind below treeline, so the trench I made should stay until the next snow. Once above the bristle cone pines the entire ridge was windswept. The Crestones look amazing right now! 
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Route: Horn Creek TH
Posted On: 2018-07-29, By: amnesia
Info: Summer conditions. There's some bushwhacking and navigation through deadfall needed initially after leaving Rainbow Trail, but it's not all that bad. Route is clear and obvious above the treeline. Saw a couple people on Rainbow Trail but otherwise had the mountain to myself. Solid views of Humboldt-Crestones-KC-Challenger from the summit. 
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Route: from Horn Creek TH via Rainbow Trail
Posted On: 2018-05-12, By: stoopdude
Info: There is virtually no unavoidable snow on this route. It could be done in trail runners. I didn't see much info on this, so I'll elaborate- About a quarter mile after the Macey creek crossing, the turnoff to the west/uphill is unsigned and uncairned, although there is a very faint trail segment that intersects the Rainbow Trail on the right at what appears to be its highest point between Macey Creek and Hardnack Creek. There is quite a bit of deadfall in the first quarter mile after leaving Rainbow Trail, but after that a faint climber's trail with occasional cairns emerges, mostly on the south side (climber's left) side of the ridge crest. This will take you most of the way to treeline. The route above treeline is obvious and there are small patches of snow, completely inconsequential. 
 
Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2017-11-29, By: desertdog
Info: We were surprised that there is so little snow on the route. Almost completely dry. Nice day but big winds made us keep our heads down. 
 
Route: E ridge from Horn creek
Posted On: 2016-06-22, By: illusion7il
Info: All clear from Horn Creek 
 
Route: East ridge
Posted On: 2016-01-01, By: brerrabbit
Info: Trench is in place to Colony Baldy. The Rainbow Trail portion is a nice, solid trench. I broke trail from the Rainbow Trail to treeline on 12/31 so it‘s just a solo trench but I tried to step opposite my tracks on the descent to make it usable. Snowshoes were not needed above treeline, only used microspikes on the descent so I could plunge step more aggressively. 

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