Marble Mountain A  
Condition Updates  
 
Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-01-15, By: pjcolorado
Info: THANKS for the earlier updates, they were VERY helpful in preparing for my hike. There's a good trench up South Colony Rd to the Rainbow Trailhead. Once off the Rainbow Trail and on the Marble trail you will need snow shoes. The trench is not capable of holding you with just hiking boots and micro-spikes. I tested the trench at times and it was as deep as my trekking pole. The wind above and below tree line makes staying on the path difficult as well. Above tree line and on the side of the mountain you can switch to micro-spikes. The wind was another factor. Going up the wind was ferocious, but coming down I needed my trekking pole to help keep me upright at times. It was great to back below tree line to cut the wind. Managed to get back to the road before dark, but needed my headlamp to get back to the 2 wd trailhead. Excellent training for winter hikes. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-01-04, By: lkk8815
Info: Snowshoes are a must. The road is hard packed for two miles to the Rainbow trail turnoff, after that I put snowshoes on. The trench still exists to just beyond Pt 10725 (thank you to those who put that in!) After that, I have a hard time believing any trench can survive the wind blasting it away from there until treeline at 11500'. My tracks from the morning were almost gone on the way down. Expect deep snow and wallowing in some places. Above treeline is mostly wind blown with some hard snow patches. It should have been an easy cruise to the summit and back except for the wind tossing me around like a rag doll. My watch said 10.9 miles round trip from the lower south colony lakes TH. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-01-01, By: CoHi591
Info: There is a lot of snow up there. Post holing up to our knees even with snowshoes. Flotation absolutely necessary once you get onto the rainbow trail. We put in a solid trench to about 10,900 where we had to turn around due to being completely over it. Beautiful day though. Go get it! 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2020-12-26, By: Sbenfield
Info: Pretty good path partially up, but then stopped. Made a new path to tree line where the snow ended, but I'd still bring snowshoes. Last part to summit the snow could be avoided. Great views 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2020-07-24, By: JasonKline
Info: Summer conditions. In the event that you're considering climbing Marble on the way to South Colony Lakes and descending down the east slopes of Marble back to the trail to South Colony Lakes instead of going back down the ridge of Marble to the Rainbow Trail, don't. It involves cliffing out several times combined with class 3 bushwhacking. 
 
Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2020-05-26, By: Brian Thomas
Info: There is a large snowbank right at treeline. Other than that, 99% free of snow. 
 
Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2020-05-10, By: Tony1
Info: Generally, patchy snow in the low 11,000' range and continuous snow in the upper 11,000' range. Dry above and below that. We carried snowshoes but didn't use them. At around 8:00am on the ascent, all snow was supportive. At 12:00pm on the descent, the upper reaches of snow were supportive, while the lower reaches were not, but the postholing wasn't bad. 
 
Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2020-04-21, By: angry
Info: Broke trail all the way to top of ridge. This was slow going. Areas below treeline where I was wallowing mid-thigh. From ridge to summit is mostly dry. I was able to glisssade the areas with snow on descent. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2019-11-10, By: summitwolf
Info: No snow on the ridge once you are out of the trees. There is several inches of snow on the ridge below tree line but I did not use floatation. There is a nice trail that follows the ridge direct for most of the way up to tree line. The 4wd road and the Rainbow Trail are snow packed and icy in spots so spikes would be helpful (but not essential). Parked at the lower S. Colony TH but I probably could have driven all the way to the Rainbow Trail crossing since the road was so packed down. 
 
Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2019-07-09, By: Adoniram
Info: Success at last! The trail is completely clear of snow except for about 100 feet at tree line. I didn't bother with either my yak tracks or snow shoes as it was stiff and easy to kick into. Overall a good but difficult hike due to the steepness. One pic is the elevation profile. Other pics are for fun. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2019-06-20, By: Adoniram
Info: Road to Rainbow Trail is completely clear of snow. Only a few puddles and not very deep or large. Route up the mountain is very dry until about 10,800 ft. From there to above tree line (around 12,000 ft), snow is very deep and drifty. I used snowshoes but wished I had crampons. Very little post-holing, but I really had to dig in with the toe of my snowshoes to get traction. Micro spikes and yak tracks would be useless right now. This snowy area is also among the steepest part of the trail so it's tough. At the edge of the tree line, there's a huge, steep, wide open field of snow. It was a little intimidating looking but my snowshoes got me over it quickly. By 12,000 ft, you can keep to the north side of the ridge for dry climbing the rest of the way. I did not summit due to incoming rain. Weather report called for partly cloudy skies but you know how that can change. I turned around at 12,750 ft which kind burns due to how close the summit was, but I have little people at home who expect me to keep making money for the next almost 20 years so risks aren't worth it right now. Rain did indeed come down as soon as I got below tree line. I wore yak tracks on the way back and did fine with digging my heels in. Very slippery in spots but generally ok. If you're into sliding, you might have a good time. I'll be back again another hopefully clearer day... 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2019-05-27, By: RWinters
Info: Rainbow TH is accessible for sure with stock 4wd. Intermittent snow for quarter mile to the ridge. Solid snow starts at 10,600 to treeline and to summit. I wore snowshoes just for traction. With a freeze spikes would suffice. It gets soft real quick and expect some postholing. 
 
Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2019-05-03, By: Tim A
Info: Did not hike, but stopped to take some pictures along CO69. Route looks like snow from treeline to summit. Overall the Sangres look very snowy considering most of the last storm stayed well to the north. 
2
 
Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2019-04-07, By: WildWanderer
Info: Phenomenal day above treeline! Started at Lower South Colony Lakes 2WD lot at 4am, down by 10:45am. Road up to Rainbow Trail Trailhead was consolidated snow in the morning, slush in the afternoon. Trench now in place from Rainbow Trail until Treeline. I used flotation from the Rainbow Trail until just above treeline, then ditched the snowshoes and hiked the rest of the way on windblown tundra. Wind picked up quite a bit above treeline. Snowshoes were required for the entire way back down (saw lots of previous postholing from yesterday). My ice axe was helpful for a bit just above treeline, but not required. Either crampons or snowshoes are very helpful in this area as well. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2019-03-23, By: WildWanderer
Info: From the 2WD South Colony Lakes trailhead snowshoes were helpful, but mandatory once you made it to the Rainbow Trail Trailhead. There's a nice trench the entire way to Rainbow Trail. There's a minimum of 2 feet of snow on the road, and 4-8+ feet of snow once you're on the actual trail. Made a new trench from Rainbow up to treeline today. Lots and lots of wind on the ridge, even below treeline. Windblown above treeline. On my way back down the trench I'd made was gone, so I trenched again. There was a group of 6 or so people hiking up after me, so hopefully they were able to solidify the trench for hikers tomorrow. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2018-03-29, By: desertdog
Info: It dropped six inches plus of snow the night before our climb making Marble a bit harder than planned, but that was balanced by spectacular views of the Crestones. It reminded me that I need to go back and climb the Needle again! After leaving the Rainbow Trail we wore snowshoes through the trees on the ascent and descent. On our descent we found that a party had followed our track, but apparently did not have snowshoes. It was a posthole-o-rama for them. Above tree line most snow can be avoided by keeping on the right side of the ridge. We used spikes, but you could get by without them. The weather was great till the end of the day and we hiked out in snow showers. Because of the new snow the road to the Rainbow TH was tough, but it had begun to melt out by the end of the day. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2018-03-18, By: dolfh
Info: Road 120 is clear to the lower 2wd trailhead. A 4wd might make it up a mile or so further, but there are legal parking restrictions. Snowshoes are needed as you leave the Rainbow Trail and head up the narrow timbered ridge to treeline. The snow is not very supportive, although there is a well established trench. There is a surprising amount of deadfall on the route. It is easy to expend a lot of energy below treeline. The route is clear above treeline. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2018-03-11, By: aholle88
Info: No floatation needed on road up to rainbow turn-off, spikes optional. Mostly snow covered after first .5-1 mile, patchy snow and mixes of dry patches to that point. From the start of rainbow to just above treeline, snowshoes mandatory. Ski's not recommended due to the gymnastics you will be doing the first chunk of the Marble trail toward the 10k point. Highly variable snow conditions from supportive to very punchy crust, and deep thick powder. Very spring-like conditions as it got slushy and less supportive with sun/temps later on. Ridge is dry above treeline past the little trees. 
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Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2017-12-12, By: Jay521
Info: Not much in the way of snow - no need for snowshoes or spikes. Only real problem is all the dead fall on the trail but it isn't as bad as LCW stuff and can all be worked around. 
 
Route: Northeast Ridge
Posted On: 2017-11-26, By: sdkeil
Info: Nice day on Marble Mountain A today. There were small intermittent patches of snow that got more consistent was we reached treeline. However, no need for flotation as the snow was never more than an inch or two deep. Outside of the trees there was virtually no snow on the ridge so traction was not needed. Parked at the TH. 
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