re: Sangres 14er this weekend? 10/12 or 10/13

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re: Sangres 14er this weekend? 10/12 or 10/13

Postby trektheworld » Thu Oct 10, 2013 10:03 pm

I might have some time to get out for one last romp this weekend and was hoping to get in a 14er in the Sangres. I've been wanting to do Humboldt but would be open to other options. Shoot me a message or reply to here if you think you might want to do something. I'd be coming from Erie, CO.
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Re: re: Sangres 14er this weekend? 10/12 or 10/13

Postby Beer Delivery Man » Fri Oct 11, 2013 6:20 am

For anyone thinking about this, Just did Humboldt via the West Ridge last weekend, and it was beautiful. Conditions were great. Some ice on the road beyond the 4WD trailhead, and some ice in the willows in the morning. The trail thru the willows was a little muddy in the afternoon, but minimal impact on the hike. Overall, it couldn't have been better. Almost like summertime conditions down there, and I don't believe things have changed over the past week. Sangres in general, and Humboldt in particular are probably the last shot at really good conditions this late in the season. Additionally, I just wanted to offer kudos to the CFI for the quality of the trail. A little route finding on the talus in the last mile, but overall, it's as good a trail as you'll find.
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Re: re: Sangres 14er this weekend? 10/12 or 10/13

Postby flyingmagpie » Fri Oct 11, 2013 7:24 am

I did Humboldt, west ridge, on October 3rd (second ascent, first was maybe 7 years ago) and agree with Beer Delivery Man's assessment of CFI's trail improvements. On my first ascent, I found a vague climber's trail that disappeared quickly into talus. This time I found a real trail, well-cairned up above in the rock. Great job, CFI! On the 3rd, however, I had strong, icy, gusting winds to contend with. Not pleasant at all! In fact, I had to deliberately avoid the cliffs up high, worried a sudden really strong gust would push me over. The Sangres got a good dusting of snow from last night's October 10-11 storm, so unfortunately conditions now are much different than they were this past week. Not sure how deep the snow is. Wind up high is keeping some of the fallen snow in the air above the peaks, which are now (0800) in a bank of clouds. Be aware that Broken Hand Pass is now in perpetual shadow from the low angle of the sun in the south, and conditions are technical--crampons and an ice axe to be safe there. Take a look at atalarico's recent posts for photos of conditions before this most recent storm. Everything should be much worse now, and as I wrote, it is uncertain when and if the snow from this most recent storm will clear. The south facing slopes of the switchbacks up to the Humboldt saddle should be among the first to melt off, and the route should be doable as a talus hop in a day or two (?), since the ridge should blow clear.
"I've found the truest paths always lead through mountains."

--Kate Wolf, "An Unfinished Life"
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Re: re: Sangres 14er this weekend? 10/12 or 10/13

Postby bonehead » Fri Oct 11, 2013 2:50 pm

Hiked in the Sangres above Westcliffe today.
Snow at the Horn trailhead this morning.
3-4 inches at the Rainbow trail.
Just enough snow to hide the ankle breakers lurking below.
Not firm enough to ride on top.
Melting off very fast on southern exposures.
A rolling blanket of clouds has been sitting on the crest
and has obscured the peaks all day.
High power elk season begins tomorrow.

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