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Columbia/Harvard

Colorado 14er peak questions and conditions should be posted here. 14er Trip Reports
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Columbia/Harvard

Postby Zoomies2010 » Thu May 21, 2009 10:39 pm

Latest news? Snow? thanks!

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Re: Columbia/Harvard

Postby tmathews » Fri May 22, 2009 2:10 pm

Zoomies2010 wrote:Latest news? Snow? thanks!


I've been asking about this, myself. No one has responded, but I'll be heading up on Monday morning with snowshoes just to be safe.

Another Forum member did provide me with a photo from Yale, though. I compared it to the on Bill has up on the Columbia route page and it looks like most of the trail above tree-line for Columbia is clear. Further up into the basin for Harvard looks a little more difficult. I have no idea about how much snow is left under the tree canopy, though, hence the snowshoes....

http://tlmathews.com/columbiasnow.jpg

Re: Columbia/Harvard

Postby killingcokes » Fri May 22, 2009 2:27 pm

I'm heading up Harvard on Monday for a ski. Maybe I'll see you. Trying to squeeze in a few more before it all melts away

3" new at A-Basin and radar last night was showing a big hit on the Sawatch for many hours. I think by the there should be a bit more new. But there were also reports of rain in Leadville, so I'm thinking that the trail through the trees will still be relatively snow free. My guess is about 6" of new up high(11,500) by Monday perhaps a little less, but maybe more if it stalls

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Re: Columbia/Harvard

Postby tmathews » Fri May 22, 2009 4:53 pm

killingcokes wrote:I'm heading up Harvard on Monday for a ski. Maybe I'll see you. Trying to squeeze in a few more before it all melts away

3" new at A-Basin and radar last night was showing a big hit on the Sawatch for many hours. I think by the there should be a bit more new. But there were also reports of rain in Leadville, so I'm thinking that the trail through the trees will still be relatively snow free. My guess is about 6" of new up high(11,500) by Monday perhaps a little less, but maybe more if it stalls


I will look for you! You'll probably know me when you pass me on the trail. I'm a slow hiker. :-$

Re: Columbia/Harvard

Postby dubsho3000 » Fri May 22, 2009 9:55 pm

I missed the post asking about snow but there is considerable snow below treeline in the Horn Fork Basin. Snowshoes are probably a good idea. I climbed Columbia on Monday the 18th and didn't need snowshoes above treeline (although we used a small snow strip for about 500' - could have made 1000' if we had timed it better but it softened on our ascent). I'm not sure about Harvard, but I bet you can make it without snowshoes.

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Re: Columbia/Harvard

Postby tmathews » Sat May 23, 2009 4:55 pm

killingcokes wrote:I'm heading up Harvard on Monday for a ski. Maybe I'll see you. Trying to squeeze in a few more before it all melts away

3" new at A-Basin and radar last night was showing a big hit on the Sawatch for many hours. I think by the there should be a bit more new. But there were also reports of rain in Leadville, so I'm thinking that the trail through the trees will still be relatively snow free. My guess is about 6" of new up high(11,500) by Monday perhaps a little less, but maybe more if it stalls


Looks like I won't (maybe) be seeing you up there after all. I tried to hike up to Lily Lake today. It's the same trailhead as Lindsey. I didn't make it, but had a great time glissading down. Problem is, during one of the glissades, my wallet came out of my back pocket. I'm heading down there again tomorrow morning to look for it, so I probably won't be getting Columbia in this weekend.

Have fun, though!

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Re: Columbia/Harvard

Postby mattpayne11 » Mon May 25, 2009 7:28 pm

Made an attempt on Columbia yesterday. As previously stated, the snow is considerable. We packed snowshoes but never used them. The snow was hard enough to walk on. In the afternoon it was slushy but still doable. Be warned, the snow up into horn fork basin makes for a long and arduous hike. We were forced down by weather and exhaustion at about 13,000 feet near Columbia. I believe that if I had left the snowshoes in the car, and if we had started at the trailhead (we started about a mile from there at our camp), and if we had gotten better rest (a group of 12 vehicles camped right next to us and blared their bass-heavy music until 3 AM), we would have summited more than likely.

Good luck!

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