Horseshoe Mountain  
Condition Updates  
 
Route: Boudoir Couloir
Posted On: 2020-03-16, By: ccawdrey
Info: A little beta from my Horseshoe summit yesterday (3/15) with a friend. Our original plan was to go up and down via Boudoir but we opted for a standard route ascent and southeastern decent instead for a couple reasons. 1) As we got closer, the area above the choke was looking pretty wind loaded. This was confirmed once we summited. There was a small cornice forming, a fair amount of loading, and a couple inch thick slab. 2) The road to the TH is covered with a few patches of deep snow. We had to start at ~10,400 just southeast of horseshoe campground. It's not continuous either so that adds several extra miles of bootpacking which makes for a long day. We watched two 4x4 vehicles unsuccessfully attempt to cross the first patch. According to my GPS, from the location we started it's a ~14 mile day with ~3500ft of vert. 
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Route: Boudoir Couloir
Posted On: 2020-03-16, By: bmcqueen
Info: Here's a look at Horseshoe from White Ridge for those eyeing the Boudoir. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2021-01-08, By: Flyingfish
Info: Parked at the winter closure and the road is very solid packed snow with large areas that are are snow free. From the road split there are some large (4+ ft) snowdrifts that complicate this and are unconsolidated. I doubt snowshoes will be helpful due to how sugary the snow was. after around a mile up the road there is a very large wind loaded slope that also has large cracks forming at the top. We left the road and went up the bare slopes until we ran into multiple wind loaded slopes that would have been tedious and potentially hazardous to navigate. The upper slopes below the saddle with Peerless look quite wind loaded as well. 
 
Route: West Slopes from Gold Basin
Posted On: 2019-08-22, By: 9patrickmurphy
Info: Highly recommend the Gold Basin approach! Great morning up the West Slopes. No idea why this isn't a more popular route, it's outlined well in Roach's book, and it's really really gorgeous. Pretty short route, 2,300ft and ~3.5mi RT from the upper trailhead. The road was pretty rocky and had some decently tough obstacles, but my stock 4Runner got up and down without too many problems. High clearance and low gearing definitely needed, so just hike the road if you don't trust yourself to drive it; only 1 mile one-way. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2019-07-26, By: dwoodward13
Info: One patch of snow on the mining road and a small patch at the saddle to gain the ridge. Otherwise summer conditions. 
 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2019-07-15, By: Chelsea
Info: The standard route is mostly snow-free. I'm a giant baby when it comes to snowy slopes, and I really didn't have much trouble traversing what little snow is left. Any snow lower on the route can either be avoided by just walking around it on the rock/tundra, or following a different route through the maze of mine roads. We chose to go around most of the snow, but it would have been perfectly safe to walk through it. There is only one snow field remaining that you can't avoid, on the final climb up to the Horseshoe/Peerless saddle. We ascended at the narrowest point which had a boot track in it already. I wasn't uncomfortable at all, no spikes or poles/ax needed. Once you get up on the ridge, there is no snow on the trail. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2019-07-14, By: stephakett
Info: still some big snowfields, i was glad for my spikes. between 12,7-800 there was a fairly unavoidable one to gain the summit ridge, both climbers left to tackle horseshoe and right to grab peerless. TONS of wildflowers 
 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2019-07-11, By: Jim Davies
Info: Parts of the road are still buried under big snowfields, but getting up to the Peerless-Horseshoe saddle was simple, a few snow crossings on soft suncupped slopes. Boudoir is a goner. 
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Route: Boudoir Couloir
Posted On: 2019-06-17, By: Giant hills
Info: Drivable to trailhead. No flotation needed. Minimal postholing in morning. Afternoon there is some but is tolerable. Wet slide debris all in Boudoir for middle on down,upper section is clean. Good climbing snow but a ski of it might be a little tedious in sections because of debris. Sun heats it up real quick rock fall starts and little pieces of upper cornice falling off. Once out of couloir booter leads to 3ft tall section of cornice that's safe and easy to climb over. Ridge down is mostly bare. 
 
Route: Boudoir Couloir
Posted On: 2019-06-09, By: Tim A
Info: What a difference a day (and freeze) makes. On Saturday 6/8 temp at the TH was 45 degrees at 3am, with thick overcast and blustery winds. I walked two miles of the approach in crap sinking snow and when I started postholing near the Horseshoe bowl at 430am, I bailed, figuring the Boudoir would be unsafe or at minimum unpleasant. At least a dozen hikers, skiers and boarders passed me on my way down, and their tolerance for suffering paid off today. This morning, trailhead temp at 4am was 35 degrees, no wind, and clear skies. I carried snowshoes to the base of the couloir but did not need them today. A temperature inversion and thick layer of clouds kept the sun off the route until about 630 (regular sun hit is 530). As soon as the sun hit the slope, it became rapidly punchy. Lower third I put in a boot pack, upper 2/3rds I followed an excellent bootpack. Rock and ice falls into the couloir as soon as the sun hits the top cliffs. Icicles from the previous days melting start breaking off from the cornice over the route. The bootpack avoids most of this debris and the overhanging cornice by straying climber's left in the upper third of the couloir. At top of couloir, overtaking the cornice at its lowest point is still a bit stressful in warm snow. Cornice ranges from 3-12' high. Descended the Boudoir by glissade at 830am. Snow was so soft that minimal braking with the axe was necessary. Minimal postholing on the way out, temp was still in the high 30s this morning. Like most other snow routes, a clear sky and cold night mean the difference between a pleasant morning out or a sufferfest. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2019-05-24, By: madadraw1
Info: Safe option for a summit/ski on Avy day at "Considerable." Had to park at Leavick site. See TH report. Started 7AM, back at car by Noon. Snow was soft and fluffy mostly in the AM. But, more consolidated/firm when making approach to Peerless-Horseshoe saddle. Last 20-50 feet of vert to saddle was icy. Then, on/off rocks from saddle to summit. Left skis at saddle. Easy enough to boot up/down the rest. Decent amount of clouds out but still plenty of sun on snow. Minimal icy section to ski down at start of saddle. Then started to get soft right away. But, firm enough for a nice ride back to car. Lots of wind loading the East aspect and boudoir couloir. Wind was coming from East and NE entire time I was up there. 
 
Route: Boudoir Couloir
Posted On: 2019-04-27, By: ma1919
Info: Didn't summit due to wind and cornice formation above the couloir. Used snowshoes car to car, and even then we were breaking through the upper layers of snow in places after about 9 AM. 
 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2018-10-19, By: WildWanderer
Info: Parked at lower trailhead in 6 inches of snow. It looked like in the past few days vehicles had tried unsuccessfully to make it to the upper trailhead. I used snowshoes the entire route. 75% of the time they were necessary. Snow covers the entire trail, making route finding fun. The snow goes from sugary to solid with no warning. Cornice forming on Peerless. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2018-09-09, By: supranihilest
Info: The route up Horseshoe Mountain is mostly straight forward. There are several junctions in the road, and you basically always want to take the one that looks more worn. Either way you should be able to hike this one purely based on visual contact with the mountain and its features. If you descend to Finnback Knob be aware that the ridge down, while Class 2, is quite steep and loose and you might have to make your way around several short sections of harder scrambling. 
 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2018-06-30, By: CatsAreMyFriends
Info: The trail is entirely free of ice except for one snowfield right at the beginning of the trail/4x4 road, which will prevent most cars from driving beyond the 11,900 parking pulloff (I imagine that even most jeeps could not clear the snowfield currently). Driving over the alternative upper road might be possible, but it appeared to be very swampy from afar. In any case, beautiful hike with very few other hikers on the trail/road up. Somewhat windy with moderate gusts (enough to push us around a little) in the Peerless saddle. The trail had very minor mud in some areas. The smoke from the Weston Pass fire was visible, but did not affect hiking or views of most other peaks in any serious way. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2018-06-09, By: graberz
Info: Wonderful day up to horseshoe. Almost entirely dry only a few thin snow fields to go over, I used trailrunners no problem. There was a marathon race out there today up to the peerless saddle. The trek over to finnback knob was the most challenging with big loose rock in spot. Fun stuff all around. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2018-06-02, By: HikerGuy
Info: East Slopes is basically dry, I think I only crossed one short snowfield down low. Boudoir is out (see photo). 
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Route: Boudoir Couloir
Posted On: 2018-05-25, By: soybean56
Info: Climbed the coulier. Snow was good, but warmed up quickly. Choke point near the top of the coulier was only ~10ft wide and melting quickly. Beautiful day with no wind. Get the coulier for the short time it still has this year  
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2018-05-20, By: WSC_Geologist12
Info: Had a wonderful trip on Horseshoe yesterday. A party of 4 of us parked right at the 11,580 4WD point mentioned in Roach's group due to a large snow bank. After the snow bank the road was dry in places with similar snow banks scattered here and there. We climbed a snowfield that crossed the many switch backs on the road above treeline. Once we gained the ridge we stayed on the ridge up to the summit. We wore crampons on the way up and snowshoes on the way down. On the way down 2 of our party skied the Boudoir. Boudoir looked pretty good with a nice continuous ski to the cirque lake. 
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Route: Boudoir Couloir
Posted On: 2018-05-14, By: Giant hills
Info: From T.h to a little before couloir entrance patchy snow some postholing in the A.m but posthole in the p.m.couloir in great condition it was very hot up there until the summit ridge. theres a couple of boot packs through out the couloir and snow is in perfect condition all the way to the summit ridge. descended the east slopes and they were dry other than cornince hangover and some snow patchs on the outter part of the ridge Some decent glissading to be done also lol.. no need for flotation..Get after this one before its gone. 

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