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|Conditions Information||Posted By||Posted On|
|2014-09-11||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Shad and I climbed Pyramid Peak on 9/11. The conditions were perfect. There is significant snow on the north face, which looks sketchy as you enter the amphitheater, but you hike up the left side of the amphitheater and around the south side, both of which are 98% dry. We carried traction but didn‘t need it at all. It was sunny and warm in Aspen. The first picture is face you climb out of the amphitheater. The second picture is the most snow you will encounter just past the saddle. The third picture is on the green gully which is dry.
|2014-09-06||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Climb is totally dry and snow free as of 9/6. Watch out for goats tossing rocks.
|2014-07-26||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: The standard route is completely free of snow. There is a snow patch in the amphitheater that provides relief from the monotonous boulder hopping, if you so choose. The gully is completely free of snow as is the route along the ridge and final ascent to the summit. After exiting the green rock gully and traversing to the left, the trail becomes lost in a matrix of social (goat) trails and poorly placed cairns. On the descent, the trail is clearly visible from above but just a challenge from below. *Be wary of mountain goats who will kick rocks down on you from perches high on the mountain. They are the guardians of the Pyramid and they wish to protect her.
|2014-07-18||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: There is snow in the amphitheater basin. But you can avoid it. No crampons or ice axes are needed. But why would you avoid snow? It‘s a nice break from rock walking. And I was able to glissade both sitting and standing on the way down. Even if you don‘t glissade, plunge stepping is more fun and less pain than rock walking.
|2014-07-10||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Snow was clear approaching the amphitheater. A few snow fields were intact once you get there. The only snow crossing in route was at photo #24 on the route description - still a little more than in the pic. Bring an ice axe and helmet. Crampons were extra weight, I never put them on. Around pic #24 I was having trouble seeing the route. Most of the northeast ridge was pretty easy to figure out (keep going left and up), but this area was not marked with cairns and has class 5 wall everywhere. Study this part of the route before you go! I added more cairns on the way down. Got in a few glissades on the way down. Good hike!
|2014-06-15||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: There was solid bulletproof snow starting below tree line in the morning. Crampons and axe mandatory right now as well as knowing how to self arrest. Microspikes weren‘t enough. The snow on the way up is was solid all the way to the saddle. Two couloirs from the amphitheater to the saddle to choose from, one that ascends the normal route the other further to the right, both with great snow for cramponing but very steep especially the right gully. Snow was good until the 13,500ft where it turned into mush. The decent was pretty tough with all the snow turning soft as well. It was not good enough for a glissade and very slick to stand up on. We all had to self arrest a couple of times. Be sure you know how if you go up there anytime soon. Photo 1: Pyramid taking on the way down from the trail (sorry there was water on my lens) Photo 2: Hard step snow below treeline. Crampons necessary. Photo 3: Steep climbing up the right couloir above the ampitheater to the saddle somewhere around 12,300ft Photo 4: Snow turning to mush as we start post holing while ascending a 60+ degree snow slope. Photo 5: View of the bells from the summit
|2014-03-16||Route: West Face to NW ridge
Info: The waist high "Deadly Bells" sign greeting you at Maroon Lake was almost completely covered ---> Indicator of snow. Luke (coolhandluke) and I marched in Sat, spent night at Crater and climbed Sunday. Trudged up the rib on the south side of the West Gully and then rode the gulley for the last 500‘ to around 12,800 and the ridge. Snow was quite good and offered wonderful glissading on descent. Fair amount of snow as you pick your way through the ridge. Above 13,800 under the summit block, took a few steps onto a SW facing traverse, 4" x 75 SF slab cracked and slid off the cliff side. The prospect of having to do about 200‘ more of traversing on this aspect followed by another sizeable traverse on a north face caused a turnaround. Sun was blaring all day. A very enjoyable winter mountaineering trip on the PYR! 1st Pic - Goin up the West Gulley around 12,600 2nd - the remaining traverse under the summit block 3rd - otherside of the avy I triggered 4th - the Bells I think??
|2013-11-03||Route: Northwest Ridge
Info: My friends and I attempted to climb Pyramid Peak yesterday, 11/3/13. We had a nice 4am alpine start, but ran into some tough conditions. There was no trail broken on the standard Pyramid route, and we were faced with approximately 1-2 feet of snow. It was mostly sugar, and there were some wind loaded gullies. Not quiet enough for an avalanche, but its getting close. High winds, blowing snow, and our off route trek forced our hand as we turned around at the top of the amphitheater. I have uploaded some photos of the climb.
|2013-09-21||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Note: conditions this time of year fluctuate drastically on an hourly basis. Monitoring weather a few days in advance is advised. Descended Pyramid std route around 6PM yesterday. Snow was negligible and route was 95% dry. The 5% that had snow was easily avoided or stepped over. I‘m guessing there‘s a couple more inches of slushy snow above 13K‘ now and a few more inches are likely tonight. The scrambly part of the route sees sun early though so a warm day or two this week might melt most of it off. Traction is probably a good idea, depending on ability, unless we get a few days in a row of sun. Hard to tell during this time of year. We ascended via a ridge run from W Maroon Pass. Conditions were dry on both sides of the ridge until 13631, where 0-2 inches of melting snow clung to WNW aspects. Abe said he‘s doing a TR.
|2013-07-20||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Ascended the standard NE Ridge route on Saturday evening. No snow on route, only talus, dirt and scree remain. Water access is very limited once you leave Maroon Lake so plan accordingly. There was one point where the snowmelt river is exposed as it comes out of the snow/moraine around 11900ft, but it is very hard to access. Other than that no water is available. Lots of rock fall coming off the North face all afternoon, best to stay far away from it.
|2013-06-15||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: My first post! I‘ll get around to writing a TR eventually... Trail is dry until the last few switchbacks before the amphitheater. Passed some switchbacks and headed straight up to the amphitheater which had a good amount of snow (photo 1). I put on my spikes about halfway through, but my 2 partners made it up easily without them. The snow was firm and there was no post-holing (even though we didn‘t leave the parking lot until 9:30am). The NE slope past the amphitheater took a little careful navigation since the entire standard trail was pretty much covered in snow. With crampons and axe, it‘d be easier to climb straight up the 1000‘ gain. We didn‘t have those tools so we took our time finding the safest and easiest way up. Hardly any snow on the green rock, just a careful and technical climb. Very few snow patches as you reach the summit. A few places here and there we needed to traverse/kick step across snow patches to reach stable rock, but no tools were needed. I had never really glissaded before, and starting at the steep 1000‘ slope above the amphitheater was a terrifying first experience. But as we got further down the mountain and the slopes were less steep, you could actually see me smiling a bit. An axe is definitely the next item on my hiking wishlist. Summary: Crampons and an axe might have been useful for the climb just above the amphitheater, but not necessary. Axe would have been useful for glissading, but not necessary. Bring gaiters and gloves! The camera on my phone is pretty poor quality, but I‘ll take more pictures next time anyways!
|2012-11-05||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Even thought we didn‘t summit Jason, Emily and I had an amazing day in the beautiful Elk Range today attempting Pyramid Peak. The trail for the first mile is dry after that microspikes and gaters are mandatory for the rest of the day. Once you find the cairn on the main trail leading toward Pyramid the trail is a little difficult to follow for the first hundred yards. No one had been up that way since the last snow fall so we plowed trail the entire way. After the first hundred yards or so the trail is easier to follow where you encounter snow from ankle to shin deep. Once in the amphitheater there was intermittent snow but mostly rock. The 1000ft slope at the end of the Ampitheater was a little tricky but not to bad. The snow was sugary and did not give much purchase. See picture 1. At the top of the slop in the saddle at 13,000ft we were hoping since Pyramid‘s most intimidating top 1000ft faced toward the south it would be somewhat snow free. . . . .. we were wrong. . . . . very wrong. See picture 2. Route finding became an issue even with the GPS. We gave it our best efforts but after a few hairy situations and deeep unstable snow we decided to call it a day roughly 300ft below the summit just above 13,700ft. Even without the summit it was roughly an 11 hour day from car to car. At this time avy danger is very minimal. We treated with an amazing sunset on the way out. I have more pictures of the Bells and one of Snowmass and Capitol if anyone is interested just shoot me a PM.
|2012-10-03||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Route has some minor snow as approach the saddle. The upper face has snow and we turned back at 13700 ft. Saw about 7 different mtn goats and they walked within a few ft of us and even followed us up the route!
|2012-09-23||Route: NE Ridge
Info: Clear, no ice or snow on the route as of Sunday 9/23.
|2012-09-21||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Clear of snow except for back side (east) were there is still some that hasn‘t melted off on some ledges. Main route is clear, but if you top out the green wall and try to traverse left, there will be snow on top of the loose rock (with hoof prints... and a couple new hiking boot ones).
|2012-09-13||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: No snow anywhere on or near route. Bare dirt areas were damp and sometimes muddy after sun came out. Easy to go up when frozen early in the day but rather challenging to come down. Sun may have dried the dirt out today but keep this in mind if there‘s precip up there again.
|2012-06-23||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Almost the entire route is snow free. There is still small amounts of snow in the amphitheater to the right of the rock glacier. The cornice is still on the second ridge near the route, but is melting fast and caused us no problems.
|2012-06-09||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: I climbed this on Saturday in perfect conditions. The mountain is in great shape and a lot of fun. Do not stash anything on the ridge! There are a lot of goats up there and they will eat, steal, or destroy anything.
|2012-06-09||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Climbed Pyramid Peak today via the NE ridge route and all I have to say is be sure you read the 14ers.com route description for this peak. We didn‘t know that there was a CFI trail made on the slopes above Maroon Lake for easier access into the north facing basin below Pyramid so we took the "Notch" route described in Roachs‘ old 14ers book. Wasn‘t bad at all but we could have saved lots of effort. Climb up and through the notch was snow free. The basin had some snow left in it and spikes helped early in the morning but it was only like a 10 degree angle of ascent so easy. The west facing scree gullies to reach the 13,000 foot saddle were mostly snow free with one avoidable snowfield. On the upper ridge, we kind of took the wrong route and ascended the entire green gully from where the trail met up with it (after that cool tiny ledge traverse) to the summit. We didn‘t know there was an easy cairned route to the left of the green gully looking up. We found this on the way down and thanked the lord for the easier descent. The last 1000 feet to the summit we only crossed snow twice...once at the cornice down around 13,100 feet and once on the traverse around to the notch before the green gully (only like 10 foot section with bucket steps). I left my hiking poles at the 13,000 foot saddle which proved to be a big mistake...goats ate them. I met up with Nelson as well who climbed it solo and the goats stole his. KEEP your poles if you climb this peak! The route we took was sustained 4th class for at least 500 feet but as said, a much easier route follows to the left of the green gully. You only HAVE to ascend this gully for maybe 150 feet. Nelson led me down the CFI trail on the descent which was a pleasant surprise to me as I didn‘t have to downclimb more talus! Glad to have met you and sorry about your poles. PM me for any more info. I‘ll have pics up sometime tomorrow night. Wish me luck on Capitol tomorrow. After a new high for me on Pyramid, I‘m off to test my new skills on Capitol
|2012-06-03||Route: Northeast Ridge
Info: Great day on Pyramid. gregory_fischer and I hit the trail early to attempt Pyramid. It rained around 9:30pm the night before so it was not the night to forget you tent poles . . .whoops. In the early morning as we started up the trail most of the rock had dried but the dirt was still moist and in some places muddy. Thankfully we brought the GPS because we walked right by the cairn for Pyramid in the dark. It’s in a rocky area before Crater Lake that is somewhat open on your right side as you start to go slightly down hill. The cairn is big and literally right on the left side of the trail. Not sure how we missed it but we did. From here the trail is pretty easy to follow until around 10,800 feet. Between 10,800 ft until 11,300 feet or just below the start of the amphitheatre there are large annoying snow patched on the trail. We had hoped they would be hard enough to walk on but they weren’t and we post holed through every one of them that we tried to walk through. In some spots we post holed to our thighs. We eventually bushwhacked it around several of the snowfield and used the gps to get back on the trail. In the amphitheater there is a large snowfield on the right side that was very firm and easy to walk on. We headed up with no issues other than we were slowly pulling right from the actual trail. Just remember the part you need to head up is slightly towards the back left end of the amphitheatre . The trail from the end of the amphitheater up to the northeast ridge is step but was almost completely free of snow. Once on top of the ridge we were right at 13k. AVOID the first large snowfield on the trail. I post holed with every step even when crawling and at one point Greg post holed and caught himself with his arms. This snowfield is also incredibly corniced on the far end. On the way down we stayed underneath it then climbed past it and over to the left which made things much easier. I know the area is famous for loose rocks but with the rain from last night and some of the scree mixed with mud and ice made for some really hairy climbing. About a half a dozen times we both kicked rocks tumbling down the size of suitcases or bigger. We only had to climb up one snow slope 50 feet and traversed left to dryer ground. We never needed crampons but ice axe and microspikes were really helpful especially for the decent. The views from the summit were stunning. We only saw two other people on Pyramid the whole day. We were able to glissade the snow slop in the Amphitheater, which was a little bumpy but still a nice quick way to descend. I have a few more pictures if anyone is interested just shoot me a PM.