|Route:||Grays and Torreys|
|Date of Info:||11/24/2022|
Gorgeous day and the strong winds that were forecasted never came, although when the breeze came up above the saddle it was the coldest I've ever been!
The road is actually drivable to the trailhead--I did not, but somebody passed me a half-mile from the trailhead in a Subaru. I met him again at the trailhead and he said he had to gun it in a couple spots, but otherwise it was fine. He also struggled in the parking lot, which is why he wasn't already on the trail when I got there. There's one icy patch about 1.5 miles from the bottom, but otherwise it's just hard-packed snow with a couple dry sections, so if you have good tires, you'll make it to the top.
The trail is also in great condition. I postholed up to my shin for almost a 1/4 mile about 0.9 miles from the trailhead, but the trail quickly went back to hard-packed, wind-blown snow. Microspikes were an excellent choice. I wouldn't bother with snowshoes right now because it would be a hassle to have them just for that short section.
I did Torreys first and once I reached the saddle, it got a lot tougher. The small breeze was bitterly cold and going in and out of that, with the warm sun, made for drastic temperature swings. Heading up Torreys, there's a lot of postholing, but not more than shin-deep. It was really just powdered sugar. Not much texture to the snow on Torreys.
Going up Grays from Torreys, the trail was in better condition on that side, probably because it faces more north/NW. There was some beautiful rime on the rocks near the summit of Grays. Both summits were a mix of packed snow drifts and dry rock.
I considered summiting Torreys via Kelso Ridge, but decided not to after looking at it (and not bringing an ice axe or crampons). There is some loaded snow in a few places on the ridge. You can judge for yourself in the photos if you think it would be a good idea or not.
Anyone looking to ski, a couple of the couloirs are in, although that's all that's in. There's no way to ski back down to the trailhead right now, or anywhere outside of a couloir.
ALSO, I found a phone connected to a charger on the trail. If you think they're yours, DM me on here or Instagram (@andy_schlichting) and tell me what kind of phone you are missing. I plugged it in and it turned on so you're in luck if you happen to see this post.
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