Mt. Audubon  
Condition Updates  
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2019-07-08, By: bkcheck
Info: Mitchell Lake TH is still not open so I started from the day use area. The ranger at the entry station said they are hopeful (but not sure) that trailhead access will open this week. Route up Audubon is almost entirely melted out except for a small snowfield around 12'5 and some drifts hanging out below treeline. No traction needed. Made the traverse to Paiute as well, which was also almost completely melted out besides a couple small snow patches. Did not need traction or my axe for the traverse. 
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Route: North slope
Posted On: 2019-06-30, By: LoveThisSite
Info: Parking at Brainard Lake - road to Mitchell Lake is not open. We carried microspikes, snowshoes, and an ice axe (planning the traverse to Paiute) but did not use any of them. It was a very windy day, cold at the summit. The traverse to Paiute looked a bit sketchy - there's still a cornice on the ridge, and what looked like a steep snowfield to cross, on the face of Paiute. Given the wind and the above observations, we decided to not attempt Paiute. A couple of nice glissades to be had on the way down. That area is spectacular! Get there early to find parking. 
 
Route: Audubon/Blue Lake
Posted On: 2019-06-28, By: Piotr
Info: Went up Audubon on regular trail, came down to Blue Lake via colouir from Audubon-Paiute saddle. Both Audubon and Blue Lake trails through the trees really bad - it was 55F at 6am today, both trails were posthole city until treeline. Above treeline the Audubon trail is mostly dry, while Blue Lake trail is all snow covered. Colouir very loose and wet at 11am - right side more solid as it stays in the shade longer. 
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Route: East Slope
Posted On: 2019-06-26, By: SnowJunkie
Info: Lots of snow down low with large snowfields up high. I started early and found the snow mostly frozen down low and frozen above treeline which made for quick travel. It's quite beaten up from all the people post holing though. 
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Route: South Face
Posted On: 2019-06-09, By: thebeave7
Info: Climbed Mt Toll, but since there's no report page for that I'll report general conditions here for the approach from Brainard and Blue Lake cirque. Road to Brainard is locked but completely clear, so bikes were a good choice. Road around the South side of the lake to just before the picnic area where the road was almost completely covered by snow (2-4ft deep). Put on skis/skins from here and was able to skin all the way up to the Mitchell Lake TH (minus 20ft of dry road). Road is melting fast though, so might be discontinuous very soon. From the trailhead (which is under 3-5ft of snow) it was easy skinning all the way to Blue Lake on very solid snow coverage that won't be gone for a while (maybe July?). East face/trail of Audobon had some large sections of snow, but is mostly dry above treeline (as usual). The South face of Audobon was still in and skiable, but the lower section was melting out fast. Crooked couloir is still in pretty nicely. Toll's SE face was beautiful corn by 930a, definitely wouldn't want to hit it too much later than that. All the lines on Paiute looked super fat too, skiing is great up in the cirque if you can handle the approach. Photos: #1 Audubon from Mitchell lake. #2 Toll and Paiute from Blue Lake (frozen), #3 view from the summit of Toll down to Blue Lake. 
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Route: North slope
Posted On: 2019-05-14, By: merrion13
Info: Shot this morning from the air showing the Indian Peaks and Longs/Meeker. 
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Route: SE Ridge
Posted On: 2018-12-15, By: nickle
Info: Attempted an Audubon summit this morning and were turned back by very high winds, difficult to impossible to stand if not properly braced. Road to the winter lot is 100% clear and dry Road from winter lot to Brainard lake is packed snow, no need for flotation We started using snowshoes at the Mitchell Lake snowshoe trail Snowpack seems very stable, no avy risk although lots of snow is being moved today. Picture #1 - lots of snow being transported Picture #2 - Current Audubon conditions 
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Route: North slope
Posted On: 2018-10-20, By: clairekm
Info: Road is closed for the winter, but it is possible to avoid being on snow for 99% of the road. Biking to the trailhead would be very doable. Trail up Audubon was well defined and packed until the last 500 vertical feet to the summit. Many people turned around at this point. The last 500 feet was mixed snow deep snow and talus. Wore microspikes most of the way up in the morning. Carried snowshoes but the only place the snow was deep enough was the last part and there were too many rocks to safely use snowshoes there. Would recommend bringing gaiters and poles. 
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Route: North slope
Posted On: 2018-08-13, By: climbingbetty
Info: Clear and beautiful entire way up. Parked at Mitchell TH at about 6:15am (on a Saturday) and there were only about 4 spots left at that time. Route entirely snow free and dry, and wind free (!!) the day I hiked it. 
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Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-11-25, By: cmshobe
Info: Started ~730 am, took the road from the winter parking lot to the Mitchell trailhead-- no traction or snowshoes/skis necessary on the road. In the trees between the trailhead and treeline we didn't use skis or snowshoes, but they would definitely reduce the postholing and will probably be important after the next big snow. Above treeline there's a mix of snow, rock, and ice, such that spikes and snowshoes/skis wouldn't be that useful. Winds were >50 mph at the summit; really wild. Beautiful clear day though! 
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-11-17, By: johnnalynnfoster
Info: We started around 0700 this morning and the sun was shining all day! The gate was closed, obviously. But we hiked in the extra 2-ish miles to get to the trail head. There is a couple feet of snow up there until you get above tree line, then there is a mixture of snow, dry trail, and ice. On the way down we post-holed quite a bit. I would recommend traction, but I never used mine. It was extremely windy, 40 mph sustained above tree line. But we had the mountain to ourselves and it was pretty fantastic. 
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-09-30, By: goldenite
Info: Did the Audubon>Paiute>Paiute/Toll saddle loop today. Very wind to start, but lighten up as the day went on. Brought micro spikes, but didn't use them. The slope up to the saddle to Audubon had the most snow coverage (pictured), otherwise I could mostly rock-hop to avoid it. Some postholing starting around 8:30/9am. Not a problem when its just a few inches, but there are some trap doors on the slopes to watch out for. Traverse to Paiute was a breeze. From the saddle, just stay to the south and its dry (pictured). If fact, I don't think I've seen North and South slopes in such contrast. Also pictured is Mt Toll in case someone's interested in doing that soon. 
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Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-09-05, By: kingshimmers
Info: Route is snow free and dry. Parking at the Mitchell Lake trailhead lot has been filling up very early on weekends, and today the Brainard Lake main lot was nearly full at 8:30am. 
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-07-14, By: bbaker1155
Info: Parking now available at Mitchell Lake Lot. Virtually no snow remaining on the trail. 
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-07-18, By: Hucksley
Info: A comedy of errors on my part climbing this guy. Started far too late for a weekend trek (we're talking 9 a.m.), got stuck parking at the winter trailhead, effectively adding 4.5-5 mi RT that could've easily been avoided by getting there earlier. Max of 3 snow patches to traverse on the way up, very easy hike and a great way to introduce non-hikers to the game. Thunderstorm developed far more quickly than anticipated and forced us to bail shortly after summiting. Was very crowded naturally given its proximity to Denver/Boulder and the gorgeous weather, but never felt like we were held up or packed in like cattle. Stunning views of Longs, the rest of the Indian Peaks and more, very little effort for much reward! 
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-07-08, By: MC.Ikema
Info: Parking was still limited to the main public day-use lot at Brainard Lake. The roads to the trail heads are closed. The route up Audubon is practically snow free. (there might be six strides across a shrinking snow patch). Traction not needed or seen. 
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-07-05, By: dminard
Info: Parking was still limited to the main public day-use lot at Brainard Lake. The road to the trail head is closed. This adds one mile of paved walking each way to the hike. The trail is in great condition to the summit of Audubon! There were a few patches of snow and a few longer sections of snow but easily passable. I had my Yaktrax with me but did not need them. 
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2017-06-18, By: Alpine Guy
Info: Road is open to the summer day use lot at Brainard lake but vehicles cannot pass beyond - the campground and trailhead parking lots are due to open in the next couple of weeks. This adds a mile of pavement walking each way. Lots of snow covering the trail through the woods, and following the boot track requires some concentration. Several blowdown trees add to the routefinding challenge. Maybe 20% of the total hike was on snow today, and the snow was generally firm through noon. 
 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2017-06-04, By: cloudkicker
Info: Climbed Mount Audubon today. Ascended the southeast ridge and descended standard. The road to Brainard Lake is closed for another 2 weeks or so, so we walked it up the road. The Mitchell Lake trail was well snow packed, easy to cross early in the morning. The boulder field ramp to the start of the ridge was bare. The start of the ridge had some snow but the rest of the ridge was dry. Notch was very easy to cross and the class 3 sections before and after the notch were dry. Right before the final class 2 slope there was a steep snow section. Axe and spikes helped big time in this section.... packed crampons but never used them. On the way down we had some wallowing, postholing and route finding issues (lost the trail ) but I give it a week or two and much of the snow will be melted out, allowing the mountain to be climbed via both routes without much difficulty. 
 
Route: North slope
Posted On: 2016-06-28, By: blazintoes
Info: Completed a wild solo IPW loop from Brainard Lake. Long lake trail to Pawnee Pass, left to Shoshoni, back to the pass, Pawnee Pk, up Mt. Toll, 4 raps down Toll's north face, up Paiute then finally Audubon and down to the Mitchell Lake trail head ending with long, hot walk of shame on the road because the gate to Long/Mitchell Lake trailhead(s) was closed so will add 2 miles RT. The trail along Long Lake is clear with interspersed avoidable patches of snow. Up to Pawnee pass I veered right of the snow field to get to Shoshoni and avoided all snow. Pawnee pass and down the CDT is clear of snow. All ridges are also clear if you stay high. All north and east faces hold snow. Toll's north couloir is primo snow for spiky things like pons. I brought microspikes, which were useless so chose to rappel. Found an old pin about 2/3 the way down Toll. The remaining two ridges were clear. The trail down Audubon is all clear. ~14 mile day/~7,100 vert/11 hours Indian Peaks is spectacular! 
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