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Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Colorado 14er peak questions and conditions should be posted here. 14er Trip Reports
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Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby bailey » Tue Sep 18, 2012 11:41 pm

Anyone know of the conditions (ie: snow coverage) and/or have any plans to go do any of these this coming weekend? Thanks!

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Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby HikerGuy » Wed Sep 19, 2012 12:08 am

bailey wrote:Anyone know of the conditions (ie: snow coverage) and/or have any plans to go do any of these this coming weekend? Thanks!


I'm hiking Castle/Conundrum on Saturday. I will be driving over Independence Pass on Friday afternoon after doing Princeton. Hoping I can find a spot to camp near the turn off to Pearl Pass, if not I will turn around camp lower down the road and drive up in the morning. I'd like to get 3000' so I will not be driving all the way up. Dark green Ford Ranger.

I don't see myself starting before 7 or 7:30 given the good weather forecast. I will be hiking the Northeast Ridge route and returning over Castle after Conundrum.

-Troy
Last edited by HikerGuy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 12:23 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby KenE » Wed Sep 19, 2012 12:09 am

I'm planning on doing Castle on Friday with a daylight or there 'bouts start. I will mention that I'm pretty slow and far from a spring chicken.

Ken
What do you call a guy like me up here
More than a hiker, but not quite a mountaineer
The thighs labor and the breathing is hard
I hold high places in the highest regard

Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby KyleS » Wed Sep 19, 2012 5:00 am

We're planning on climbing LaPlata via Ellingwood Ridge on Saturday, but snow/ice could certainly be a deal breaker... If anyone is up there in the next few days, conditions beta would be incredibly helpful. :)

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Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby desertdog » Wed Sep 19, 2012 6:12 am

HikerGuy wrote:
bailey wrote:Anyone know of the conditions (ie: snow coverage) and/or have any plans to go do any of these this coming weekend? Thanks!


I'm hiking Castle/Conundrum on Saturday. I will be driving over Independence Pass on Friday afternoon after doing Princeton. Hoping I can find a spot to camp near the turn off to Pearl Pass, if not I will turn around camp lower down the road and drive up in the morning. I'd like to get 3000' so I will not be driving all the way up. Dark green Ford Ranger.

I don't see myself starting before 7 or 7:30 given the good weather forecast. I will be hiking the Northeast Ridge route and returning over Castle after Conundrum.

-Troy


We found a great place to camp in this area, but you have to pay attention to find it. Its is maybe a quarter mile (at most) below the pearl pass junction. You will pass a private cabin on your right (note: You can't camp near the cabin as its private property). Once you pass the cabin in 150 yards or so, the turn off to the camping spot is on your right. You turn off to a nice flat area to camp. Up another 10 yards from this spot there is a another camping spot on your left. Its not as flat though. There may be a few places above pearl pass to camp, but as you know the road gets bad.

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Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby tjerasdave » Wed Sep 19, 2012 6:30 am

I did Castle and Conundrum yesterday. There was some snow on the ridge and since it is shadowed in places you might encounter some snow/ice when you try it. Rest of route is in great shape but make sure you stay on trail. We lost the trail on the boulders and those rocks are extremely unstable. Good luck and PM me if you have questions. I'll try to answer but I'm reasonably doing Holy Cross today.

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Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby Wentzl » Wed Sep 19, 2012 7:25 am

We did LaPlata yesterday from the Winfield side. No snow at all on this aspect, but a trace on Ellingwood Ridge shown in photo. This is insignificant and won't affect climbing the ridge. Given the forecast for the next few days it will likely stay that way. Fall colors PEAKING in this area right now.
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Trace of snow.
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COLOR!
DSC01531.JPG (146.51 KiB) Viewed 280 times

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Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby YEONDERIN » Wed Sep 19, 2012 8:30 am

I just camped at the Pearl pass turn-off and there is not much selection there. There are about 4-5 places to park with only one of those being level and even less areas for tents. There is a very nice spot on the right side maybe 1/8 mile past this turn-off and you still can get your 3000 feet from there. Otherwise you will find the last decent camping ends before the last bridged creek crossing as desertdog mentioned.
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Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby wizzer » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:24 am

My suggestion is do La Plata now. It takes a little longer and the willows area from winfield TH should be less wet this time of year. Would recommend Castle/Conundrum earlier in the summer when most of the route is snow free but Montezuma wall is still holding plenty. Glissade back down two separate 400-500 foot sections and your back at the mining road in no time.

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Re: Castle/Condrum or La Plata?

Postby bailey » Thu Sep 20, 2012 8:35 pm

Thanks for all the great replies! Work got a little busier than I had planned this week, so I am just now checking the thread! Think La Plata it is!! ;) I want to bring the dog too, and it sounds like CC may be too hard on her. Happy Fall!

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