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|Conditions Information||Posted By||Posted On|
|2015-04-06||Route: West Ridge from Guanella Pass
Info: Bring snowshoes and an ice axe (traction wouldn‘t be a bad idea either). Very deep snow up to the base of Spalding. I took my snowshoes off at the base of Mount Spalding and I was fine on the ascent. After you get on Spalding, it was very hard packed snow (in the morning). On the way back down it was fairly soft, but manageable without snowshoes. Once I got down to the willows, snowshoes were a must. They were helpful in the morning, but necessary in the afternoon. Very windy, but definitely manageable climbing day!
|2015-03-21||Route: West Ridge via Mt. Spalding
Info: Did not summit. The route had not seen any traffic since the last snowfall on Wed. night and Thursday. We got to the shoulder at around 13,900‘, then tried following the cairns around the SW side of the ridge. We quickly encountered a short, but very suspect, totally snow-baked snow slope that didn‘t look good at all. We decided that staying directly on the ridge would be the only safe way to do the route today, and retraced our steps. A few minutes of poking around the ridge revealed a fair amount of class 3 scrambling on rock interspersed with sugar snow. Certainly not undoable, but it being fairly late in the day, already tired from breaking trail up Spalding earlier (see other entry), and with our 1-year border collie, it wasn‘t in the cards that day. Still a good time!
|2015-03-07||Route: West Ridge from Guanella Pass
Info: Solid trench running from the Guanella Campground parking area up the road and all the way through the Scott Gomer Creek meadows to near 12,000 where Scott Gomer Creek comes down between Mount Spaulding and Gray Wolf Mountain. Above that, fairly snowy with large areas of hard packed snow. Snowshoes required and micro-spikes highly recommended. West ridge is fairly windblown and dry with some decent pockets of snow/ice. Very little snow on the summit proper. The awesome trench is courtesy of SarahT and Kevin Baker‘s group that were ahead of my group. (Thanks guys!)
|2015-01-17||Route: Mt Evans Road
Info: Rode up to the top of Mt Evans Road on my fat bike this past Saturday. Was very windy but otherwise enjoyable. The avy areas on the road we stable and Goliath route was pretty bare. Pretty neat to be up top and have it all to myself. Sure beats a summer day in August.
Info: Went up Goliath route and back down Chicago Creek yesterday. Snowpack almost non-existent on Goliath route, though Chicago Creek was crotch deep snow from first lake to reservoir. Not even the fattest skis or biggest snowshoes could float on that powder. Postholing nightmare. Road looked pretty clear except for one section that has some avy danger present. Easy to hike around if you were on the road. Snow was moving in fast and hard on the way out. Be safe out there.
|2014-11-20||Route: West Ridge from Guanella Pass
Info: Attempted Mt Evans as far as the gully, from Guanella Pass. Once you took the side trail off the main Bierstadt trail, and went into the willows, trail got pretty poor. About 3 inches of soft snow, and the creek crossings/puddles are buried. Ice over top of water is thin, you will break through and some of the water is higher then boot level. Gully also has about 3 inches of soft snow, it hides the rocks and gaps between rocks and so the going is slippery and uncertain. I don‘t think this will be a decent route until more snow falls, as right now its about the worst possible level.
|2014-11-08||Route: West Ridge from Guanella Pass
Info: Trail dry to "large boulder on left" (turn off to Mt Evans trail). Willows section was frozen/snow covered in the morning, and semi slushy in the afternoon. Poles were helpful on the ice. Traction would have made life easier on the ice (just didn‘t feel like getting them out). The gully up to the ridge is dry (this gully sucks coming down).
|2014-10-23||Route: Highway-by Bike
Info: I Biked Mount Evans today. One spot at mile 12 required me to lift my bike over a drift. Otherwise almost completely snow free to the upper parking lot(14,200 ft). There was snow on the trail to the summit and "West" Evans but I did not feel the need to put on my microspikes.
|2014-10-22||Route: West Ridge via Chicago Creek
Info: Definitely snowy but not bad yet. REALLY wished I brought traction, though. The trail is clear almost to upper Chicago, but really would‘ve loved some microspikes on all the ascending after. Snow on the ridge is deep but hardened enough for epic glissading.
|2014-10-17||Route: Via Sawtooth
Info: Bierstadt: Like others are saying microspikes would be nice but not necessary. Sawtooth: Gaiters are a must unless you like snow in your boots. Most of the snow is only a few inches but extremely slippery right now and there were several times I post-holed to my knee (falling between unseen rocks). Snow can be avoided on Evans until about the last mile, where you drop down below the ridge crest. Again the snow is only a few inches but with occasional deep spots. If you choose to venture through the willows (evans west ridge) be prepared for some serious mud, I found it to be completly unavoidable. Overall wind was mild to none all day, a perfect day for climbing.
|2014-10-14||Route: West Ridge from Guanella Pass
Info: Willow areas were covered with ice in the morning and some of it almost held weight. They are certainly easier to walk through this time of year. A crunchy layer of snow was in much of the lower open areas, difficulties began after crossing Scott Gomer creek (didn‘t take the gully up). For the rest of the hike, constant post-holing with depths from ankle to mid calf, and a few unluckier steps in knee deep drifts. Harsh winds on the ridge, blowing snow up at times. Some patches were crusty enough to not break through while walking over. In the afternoon, nearing slushy/sticky snow, made the ridge and gully descent much trickier. Also, very slippery mud near the bottom of the gully.
|2014-10-11||Route: West Ridge via the West Gully
Info: Ascended via the gully to the West Ridge. Conditions were good. Significant amounts of snow above 12,000 ft. In some locations, the snow was knee deep, others it was shallow due to blowing. Snow slowed us down and made the trail more difficult to hike. Also noted some solid ice covering the ground above the gully, but it is easy to avoid. Snow was melting on our way down the mountain. Ground was still very marshy near the creek and in the willows.
|2014-09-18||Route: Tour de Abyss
Info: Tour de Abyss in perfect condition right now, no new snow. Highly recommended for experienced scramblers, do it before new snow comes, may be sketchy then. See my Mt. Evans Road update for the latest regulations and fees.
|2014-07-21||Route: Parking Lot at Top
Info: WIND! Constant nearly gale force winds from Summit Lake to top. Went with 8 year old planning on a possible West Ridge attempt, instantly called it a no-go uppon arrival at Summit Lake. Next time. For today it was fun to drive up to the top and check the view, we didn‘t even attempt the last 200 ft to summit the wind up above 14k was blow-your-hat-off fast and just cold enough to suck the air out of my boy. Fun times at altitude!
|2014-07-19||Route: Bierstadt, Sawtooth, Evans
Info: The Sawtooth definitely still has snow on the descent from Bierstadt. It was crossable/avoidable, but a bit hairier than I would have liked (and more so than I remembered from a few years ago). I didn‘t have any traction devices or an ice axe. Previous report said he was "totally comfortable." I was okay, but I wouldn‘t say "totally." Avoiding the snow will take you off route a few times, and added some time. Contrary to a the previous condition report, it seemed that the people that descended from Bierstadt and stayed to the southeast side of the snow (with the snow to your left) almost all the way to the bottom of the snowfield were able to traverse much more quickly. This puts you below the route, and you‘ll have to climb back up a bit. I didn‘t see anyone charge straight across the snow, though, so that comparison is just amongst the groups that were avoiding snow as much as possible.
|2014-07-12||Route: Via Sawtooth from beirstadt
Info: THE SAWTOOTH IS NOT FREE OF SNOW. some guy put on here, maybe two weeks old or even three, that the sawtooth was clear and free from snow. He obviously did not hike it and was posting what he saw from the top of beirstadt. Although it is almost free from snow and only requires two snow crossings early in the traverse. One is on an intermediate slope and we did use micro-spikes. A group of hikers behind us did not have microspikes and decided to drop below the snow fields to cross on boulders and it added almost an hour to their trip by the time they hit the summit on evans. We did not have an ice axe and felt fine, totally comfortable. The total distance traveled over snow is probably only 150-200 feet in both fields, but we hit them early (8 a.m.) and the snow was rock solid and icy, a slip here would send you into the lake below, but a later crossing would probably soften up the snow enough to kick-step safely. No need for crampons, some reports say traversing with poles was stable enough. We did not have poles, but we did use microspikes and it was a great day, summer conditions everywhere else. Also we took the high route (the dotted line on 14ers.com) thru the part after the ‘exit ramp‘ and it was really pretty stable. The guy before us was walking the high line with his dog and they both pretty much scampered across with no issues. Overall great hike, sawtooth was fun.
|2014-07-12||Route: Northeast Face of Evans, Sawtooth, Mt. Spalding
Info: I hiked with five people total and started at the Summit Lake Parking area on the road to Mt. Evans at 6:30, summited Mt. Evans at 8AM via the Northeast face, worked backwards across the Sawtooth, summited Mt. Bierstadt at 11:20, back across the Sawtooth, and down via Mt. Spalding. Total time: 7:30, 8.4 miles. The Sawtooth saw regular traffic (a party every half hour or so) and there were easily 200 people on top of Mt. Bierstadt. Awesome hike, huge snow field going up Bierstadt from Sawtooth/coming down Bierstadt to Sawtooth but easily avoidable on either side. Stable footing across Sawtooth and easily passable. Route looked exactly like the pictures in the description and it made for a very successful and awesome day of hiking. Thank you 14ers.com! Fog rolled in as we came across the Sawtooth for the second time (back to Evans) but we made it down before the rain started. We also came across an individual who had fallen over backwards and hit his head and scraped his knee. Fortunately, I had a first aid kid and was able to patch him up and send him on his way. Don‘t hike alone! Enjoy!
|2014-07-06||Route: Northeast Face
Info: As most of you know the road to Summit Lake is paved and so there are no issues with any type of car getting there. The drift mentioned in other reports at the junction of the road and trail is mostly melted but you still have to watch for the trail at .6 miles from the lake. The hike is steep but short - there‘s no snow at all. There were only a couple of other hikers as most people elected to drive to the observatory. I did see bighorn sheep and mountain goats near the top.
|2014-07-05||Route: West Ridge via Mt. Spalding
Info: Summit Lake parking lot was full at 9:00 AM on a Saturday morning. The route is free of snow.
|2014-06-29||Route: West Ridge via Mt. Spalding
Info: Trail is basically completely free of snow and mostly dry. The wind was strong and cold, but the sun was out and not a cloud in the sky all day. The alpine wildflowers are blooming too! (I‘ve also included a picture of Bierstadt and the sawtooth for anyone looking for their conditions)