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|Conditions Information||Posted By||Posted On|
|2015-02-12||Route: East Slopes
Info: Road from winter TH is snow packed making for fast travel. Used snow shoes across willows to lower part of Grays and micro spike to the summit.
|2015-02-08||Route: Stevens Gulch
Info: The road up to the summer parking area from Bakersville has good snow coverage. Crusty in some areas from the freeze/thaw. Similar to spring conditions down low. Slopes under Kelso are very loaded. Keep your distance. Plenty of snow coverage to cross over the willows below the summer trial or stay on the creek. There is solid ice along the creek in some areas so be careful when skiing back down. The snow going up after the summer parking area is very windblown and hard. Large sastrugi to watch out for while skiing down. Not much post holing if you‘re on snowshoes. Not much snow on the climb up Gray‘s after the Kelso Ridge cut-off but there is lots of ice from the warm weather so it‘s easy to slip. Expect to ditch your skis here. Stay off the snow filled slopes between Gray‘s and Torrey‘s. They were very wind loaded. It was windy and cold on the way up. The wind stopped and the clouds disappeared when we got to the summit around 12:30pm. It was like this for the decent so I expect there was more snow melt and I‘m sure there is more ice on the trail because of it. We had some good turns and some good snow between the bullet proof on the creek during the decent.
|2014-12-06||Route: East Slopes
Info: Hike standard route up Grays. Road was blocked off by service trucks at the very bottom, but it was unpassable anyways. Skinned up the road (almost exactly three miles). It was very hard packed snow (not very icy though) about half a foot deep for the first two miles and then deeper powder with a narrow packed trail cut through the middle for the last mile of the road. The trail was mostly covered in snow but there were enough patches of bare ground for us to ditch the skis very early (less than half a mile in) and switch to hiking boots and crampons. Pretty straightforward hike, but crampons/microspikes are a must for at least the top half (especially coming down) and snowshoes might be helpful to, but be warned that there are patches of bare rock all along the trail even at the top and especially on the summit. Skied all the way down the road after returning to the trailhead.
|2014-11-18||Route: East Slopes
Info: I put snowshoes with tails on at the summer TH after walking up the road to there. Ditched the snowshoes about 12,700‘ and switched to microspikes the rest of the way. More loose powder snow than I would have liked after ditching the snowshoes up to the shoulder. Once on the upper mountain, mostly hard packed snow and ice and the microspikes were perfect.
|2014-10-25||Route: Grays and Torreys
Info: Despite the sign on near the start of the road, it‘s passable to the summer trailhead. Below 12,500‘ the trail is mostly clear. Snow & some ice from thaw & refreeze on the trail above to Grays, but passable without microspikes, though they are helpful for the return. From Grays to Torreys there are places with snow drifts but most of it is packed and easily passable. Microspikes definitely helpful for this leg. Return stretch to reconnect to Grays trail was snow and blowing snow off the peak, making the narrow trail hard to follow and a bit tricky to navigate, but not enough snow yet to be worrisome. Amazing conditions for late October.
|2014-10-25||Route: East Slopes
Info: I didn‘t climb Grays and Torreys but got a good beta shot from Kelso mountain. It looked like snow-packed trail above 12k or so, without enough snow to warrant avy concerns yet. Kelso ridge looked like it was holding snow up high. Saturday was so hot that anything south facing was basically clear of snow. I should mention that the road was completely dry.
|2014-10-19||Route: Grays and Torreys
Info: Great day today: no wind, relatively warm, and mostly sunny. Fair amount of snow, but not nearly enough for skiing on any face. Crampons are very helpful, but not necessary as there is packed snow starting a little above 12,000ft and all the way to the top and on the whole saddle over to Torreys.
|2014-10-14||Route: East Slopes
Info: There was quite a bit of snow in the morning (starting right at the TH), in some places it was knee deep. I did not used microspikes on the way up but I had winter boots. On the way down microspikes were really nice to have and also ice-axe as we glissaded down one of the hills from the saddle of Grays and Torreys. The glissade was a bit slow because the snow was too soft, in some places it was hip deep! The snow had melted quite a bit by the time we came down the trail. I attached a couple of pics.
|2014-09-20||Route: East Slopes
Info: Started around 5:30 AM, beautiful conditions/colors on lower part of trail, frost covering rocks on higher elevations (>13,500) made it a bit slippery. No new snow accumulation or snow on trail at all. Remaining snow accumulations can be seen down couloirs of Torreys. Saddle easier than expected (Class 2 ranking but conditions very favorable) and dog had no trouble, also some frost on rocks of Torreys out of direct sunshine. Crowds light when we started, got much heavier on descent. Thanks to the trail crews out working!
|2014-09-14||Route: Grays and Torreys
Info: I took a zoomed in photo of Grays (left) and Torreys (right) from Mt. Parnassus today (9/14). You can see the standard route up Grays in the photo (the white line zigzagging up the slope), and part of Kelso Ridge up Torreys. Looks like a bit of snow up high, but not too deep.
|2014-09-06||Route: Grays and Torreys
Info: Snow still on the trails on Grays, mostly above 13,000. Trails are easy to find, but slick due to snow. Good boots recommended.
|2014-09-05||Route: East Slopes
Info: Snowy conditions in the early morning, melting off substantially throughout the day. Morning trail was slick and slushy. Good shoes/boots recommended, waterproof recommended. Above 13k, had to trail blaze through a solid 3" of snow to the summit. I brought my microspikes because of the forecast and was really glad I had them. Not sure the snow will hold, but it was surprising.
|2014-08-31||Route: East Slopes
Info: Very icy at the top!! We we‘re not prepared for winter weather and some people even less so. With the wind and snow, it made for a slick and dangerous descent. Bring rain gear and warm gloves!! There was snow on the peak before we started and there was a half inch added today!
|2014-08-08||Route: Grays and Torreys
Info: Mid afternoon climb with my dad. Started just before 1PM and we were back to the car by 5. Excellent day for climbing... eyes on the sky! Trail is excellent although it is easy to get off the main trail. Fortunately, they all lead to the same place so it isn‘t a big deal. Keep going up or down. You‘ll know if something isn‘t right. Excellent views of Lake Dillon, Evans, Bierstadt, and even Longs. Enjoy!
|2014-08-02||Route: Grays and Torreys
Info: Great conditions on the trail - though I‘d definitely recommend hiking boots or extra socks as there is a lot of running water on the trail. Wet feet in tennis shoes will make you very unhappy!
|2014-07-11||Route: East Slopes
Info: Route is in full summer conditions. No snow along the standard trail. The only snowfield remaining is at the saddle between Grays and Torries and is about 200ft long. There is a good trench through it, or if very uncomfortable with snow you can hike about 200ft up the trail to grays peak and cross there on talus and small trail segments back to the normal route.
|2014-07-08||Route: East Slopes
Info: There is a snowfield above the junction for the Torreys decent trail. It‘s less than 100‘ and at 9:50 there was no ice, just cool, soft snow. Over half the trail from the Grays / Torreys saddle to the junction is deep snow, but it is packed down so that even in the afternoon there wasn‘t any post holing. Most importantly the wildflowers are awesome! About a half hour in and for the next hour of hiking it‘s all fields of wildflowers. More than a dozen varieties, and more photos than you can take, await your eyes.
|2014-07-04||Route: East Slopes
Info: I got to the trailhead the night before. Was the only car there (that would change lol). Road up to trailhead was filled with large potholes. I have driven up this road in a small car a year ago but I would not recommend it if you care about the car. I started up to the peak early at 2AM. It was freezing cold, don‘t know the exact temperature but it felt at least like 32F. A few little streams of water and unavoidable puddles to cross because of the big melt. Only 1 large patch of snow on the path around 12,500 feet you have to cross about 4 or 5 car lengths long. Microspikes were not needed just be careful of each step not to sprain an ankle. Some of the snow can drop down abruptly below your steps unexpectedly. You can avoid this patch if you walk out around it but there really isn‘t a need to walk around it. Not much more snow on the way up. A few icy patches around 14,000 which weren‘t avoidable. Later on in the day these parts were melted. No snow at the top of Grays. Didn‘t traverse to Torreys but other people I spoke to who did said the path between the two was snow free even though it might not appear that way from a distance. Later on in the day a lot of people were forming a route straight down the snow from the traverse between Grays and Torreys. By the time I was leaving there was about 400 people coming up the trail (not exaggerating) and going back down the 4 to the highway was difficult because so many people parked along parts of the road that were only about the width of 1.5 cars. So I had to be very careful not to hit their cars while my car was jolting from side to side on the large holes in the road. Great conditions though and great climb.
|2014-07-04||Route: East Slopes
Info: The road up to the upper parking is okay, most low clearance sedans were making it, though one got stuck for a short period as I walked up the road (about .9 miles up is the spot that seemed to be the worst). The route up Grays is mostly free of snow, just a few short paths through. But it was getting slippery on the way down as the sun accelerated the melt. The path up to Grays has a fair bit of water, with a couple crossings where it would be over your boots except for rocks to step on. From Grays to Torreys the route is clear of snow and in good condition. There were quite a few people coming up Torreys from the Kelso ridge without any problems too. Torreys does have a bit of snow still on the summit. Coming down from Torreys the transition over to the trail down has a stretch of snow about 300 yds long, which by 1030 was getting slushy and slick. It is narrow, but well traveled but those not wearing hard sole boots should be very careful as the sun warms the snow. You can go up Grays a bit and get around this spot. There were a number of people sliding down the steep snow field that comes down from the saddle between Grays and Torreys.
|2014-06-28||Route: East Slopes
Info: So I am just befuddled after today‘s climb. Grays was my husbands and I ‘s 2nd 14er after climbing Bierstadt 2 weeks ago. We had planned to hike Torrey‘s too but had to resign with the accomplishment of just one today. It was BITTER cold on Grays this morning. We started at 6 am and probably sumitted around 9. Many people turned around due to wind, cold, and very sloppy, icy conditions. We would not have made it ourselves if we weren‘t able to slip our extra wool socks over our gloves. Our fingers were burning and numb. The summit was disappointing as we were in the clouds with no view. Almost everyone was opting out of Torrey‘s and it‘s white out conditions. We got one of the last spots at summer trailhead at 5:45 am. Dirt road had some pretty sketchy areas and was particularly difficult coming down with all the vehicles parked along the road. Think I may never get hubby up another 14er after today. Forecast said clear skies so we were not expecting the blizzard conditions. I‘d appreciate any tip on better predicting conditions. Bierstadt 2 weeks ago was windy at times but not near as cold. To top it all off, we returned home to a sunny, super hot 85 degrees.??