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|Conditions Information||Posted By||Posted On|
Info: I was able to get half way in the Kite lake road with a passenger car-doubt a 4x4 could get further though. There were some drifts on the road and on the peaks but I didn‘t use crampons, ice ax, or snowshoes. There was some ice so spikes would have been nice. I lost a mitt so if anyone finds it let me know: black womens small. Thanks. Janet
|2012-12-23||Route: East Slopes
Info: We were only driving a van and got stopped 3 miles from Kite Lake. A 4wd vehicle could push on for another 2 miles. Bare booted to peaks; gaitors recommended and microspikes were beneficial but not necessary. Snowshoes would be of negligible utility and we chose to ditch them on the approach to the lake. Snow is very light above the saddle between Democrat and Cameron and we walked on bare dirt and rocks for about half of the time. There is no snow after Cameron; the south facing slopes of Bross are bare. Very sad
Info: Microspikes were needed on Democrat. All other peaks had just a few patches of snow but not deep enough for gaiters. Road is in good condition.
|2012-10-20||Route: East Slopes
Info: Some ice and snow on the trail. Above the saddle it was nice having MicroSpikes and a pole on the way down. The mountains are really blown off, so there’s no depth to the snow. The trails hold the snow more than the rest of the mountain.
Info: Went up the Decalibron on 6/1. Took my wife‘s Subi Legacy all the way to the trailhead. Low clearance 2wd cars are no problem so long as you take it slow and navigate the rocks and pot holes. There is virtually no snow aside from the last ridge at 13,900 on Democrat. Cameron was snow free aside from patches on the Dem-Cam ridge. Lincoln had some snow on the last 100 yds of the summit ridge but nothing to bad and Bross was just about 100% snow free. We did not bring any traction and in my opinion none is needed. Winds were horrible at >80mph but aside from that the weather was stable.
|2012-06-01||Route: East Slopes
Info: Trail is snow-free and in great shape all the way to the top. The main summit still has a fairly large snowfield that is great for the descent.
Info: Went up Democrat today with about 25 other strangers. Windy day, most people thought it was 80-100mph. My windmeter clocked the avg from the saddle to the summit at 40-55mph. At the saddle on my way down I got it up to just under 70mph. I called it a day after that. A lot of people continued on to climb the circuit. TReport on my blog if interested: http://coloradoascents.blogspot.com/2012/05/mount-democrat.html
|2012-05-28||Route: East Slopes
Info: Hiked the "standard" East Slope approach today in regular hiking boots with no problems. A few short snow patches are still present on the first section of trail, then again just as you get to the saddle, and then one larger snowfield on final summit approach to Democrat. (pic) The snow is hard-packed, very icy (solid ice from melt / refreeze) / slick in early mornings then slushy / muddy with afternoon sun exposure. The Summit Log for Mt Democrat was missing this date. The summit log container looks as it if has been vandalized / crushed and no semblance of log book, just the tie-down cable and partial container remnants.
|2012-05-27||Route: East Slopes
Info: Mostly snow free on the way up the steeper pitches, but the top is all snow. Snow is hardpacked, no postholing now, but slick in places. Microspikes not needed (we were the only ones who had them it seemed) but they sure made it more comfortable.
|2012-05-26||Route: East Slopes
Info: Some icy snowpack on democrat trail. Microspikes nice but not necessary on that peak only. The rest of the peaks pretty dry. Very windy but not too cold. Road to kite lake in good shape even for 2wd. Lots of camping areas. Don‘t forget $3 for parking unless you want to park 100 yards down or so.
|2012-05-22||Route: East Slopes
Info: The road is clear and dry. A bit rough but there were several passenger cars at the Kite Lake parking lot today. There is a fair bit of snow along the route of the four-peak circuit. No traction required, but putting the micro spikes in the pack is probably not a bad idea, just in case. No postholing experienced on a clockwise circuit, starting at 7 a.m.
|2012-05-12||Route: East Slopes
Info: Climbed Democrat this morning after getting 4-5 ish inches of snow cover last night. No snowshoes needed, though. Only a few post-holing moments. Microspikes served us well. The snow was getting mushier by 10 am, and might melt off soon. The road to Kite Lake was clear of snow by 10 am, but VERY muddy.
|2012-05-05||Route: East Slopes
Info: Snow below the saddle is hard packed may cause postholing if you descend later in the day. Any snow above the saddle was avoidable. I had microspikes but never took them out of my pack.
|2012-04-20||Route: East Slopes
Info: Still some deep snow up there. I recommend some snow shoes as post holing all day was tough. Hellacious winds today. NOAA said up to 32 MPH, but we had sustained winds that could pick my loaded Gregory Palisade 80 off of the ground and the gusts easily knocked two adult males over. It was wacky up there kids.
|Benji the Hunted||2012-04-20||2|
|2012-04-18||Route: East Slopes
Info: Road to Kite Lake was mostly clear. There were a couple patches of snow that a 2WD with clearance could take. The majority of the trail was covered in snow, luckily we left some nice trenches for you. Microspikes were helpful on the decent.
|2012-04-08||Route: East Slopes
Info: Hey guys! My wife and I just got back from Mt Democrat. It was a near perfect day. It was windy, but wuite nice between gusts. My wife had microspikes, she only used them on the descent. I managed without anything (no poles, axes, or spikes). The snow is quite packed and mostly ice in a lot of spots. We did some glissading, though not much. The dogs had a blast and were best friends with everyone they saw! The road in is dry all the way. I made it fine in a Subaru Impreza. A 2wd car with decent clearance should be able to make it, just pick your line wisely. Happy Hiking! Andrew
|2012-03-31||Route: East Slopes
Info: Road to Kite Lake is still clear, albeit muddy in the afternoon--high clearance strongly recommended. Route up to the Dem-Cam saddle entails a bit of snowfield crossing, an ascent up a short, mildly steep snow slope (trekking poles should be sufficient to surmount this), and mostly following the trail all the way to the summit. There are a few areas where slick, hard-packed snow covers the trail, or the trail crosses a short bit of snowfield, but they can be surmounted with minimal traction (e.g., spikes) or probably avoided altogether. Even milder conditions exist over to Cameron, up Lincoln (the last bit to the summit is snow-free) and over by Bross and South Bross. The screefest descent back to Kite Lake was about 99% snow-free until the slopes lessened, with one portion back low in the basin offering a modest glissade. A bit of post-holing went down on the way back to the parking area. In short: minor traction (spikes or ice axe) are a good idea, but you can get by without them if need be. Snowshoes aren‘t worth the very short stretch or two they might help out on--leave them. Lots of dry rock up there!
|2012-03-24||Route: South Slope
Info: Saturday, March 24th, 2012. We skied the main chute skier‘s right of the summit from around 13,800‘. From 13,800‘ to the summit was dry, though I suppose if you like walking over rocks with your skis on you could make it go from the true summit. The chute was in excellent condition, corning up well around 10am and granting a ski all the way back to the Kite Lake TH. We dug a pit at the base of the chute, isolated a column, and recorded a CT of 30+ and a shear score of 3. The chute is very stable, and is lending good skiing from summit ridge to car right now. Feel free to PM me if you need any additional info. -benners P.S. The third photo is a shot of Arkansas from Democrat‘s summit.
|2012-03-18||Route: East Slopes
Info: Sorry I have no pics. My camera is broken and my partner forgot his. Did the loop starting up the Bross trail and ending on Democrat. The road is now plowed to Kite Lake due to the recent S&R activity on Ajax. The sherriff and local search and rescue folks were up there sat morning and they were all very nice and very friendly. There was a couple of hundred yards of snow from the TH towards bross. Snowshoes definitely not needed. Almost dry route all of the way until the Cameron/Democrat saddle. Microspikes might be nice up Democrat as the trail there is pretty hard packed but we managed just fine with just boots. We camped on the Democrat summit Sat night and woke up to crazy winds sunday morning so we packed up quickly and got back to the car. Having the advantage of the road being open to kite lake, we made it down in time to have a delicious breakfast at the world‘s highest saloon in alma. Nice folks there!
|2012-02-29||Route: East Slopes
Info: I was able to drive through fresh snow 2 miles past Alma, leaving 4 miles to snowshoe to Kite Lake. During my hike, the plows came, so you should be able to drive another 1/2 mile or so now. I kept my snowshoes on from car to car. They weren‘t always needed, but throughout the hike there were frequent spots of snow deep enough to warrant them. The wind managed to pretty much erase my tracks, so I found myself re-breaking trail for a few miles after Kite Lake on the return. Avy slopes can be avoided without much trouble. The hike took me 7.5 hours - one of the easier winter 14ers I‘ve done!