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North Eolus

Condition Updates  
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 9/24/2023, By: andlours
Info: Summer conditions to the summit. Some runoff/freeze on the ramp that was avoidable but no snow at all on the route. 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 9/3/2023, By: Briere
Info: Full summer conditions still; free of snow! 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 8/19/2023, By: Snommed1
Info: Mt Eolus/N Eolus...99% summer conditions. One small snowfield to cross (~30yd, see picture) with an easy go-around if snow is still frozen over. Mosquitoes have abated in Chicago Basin. None to speak of. Not a lot of Needle Creek water access points up to Chicago Basin if you had planned to filter water along the way. Wear sunscreen. 
1
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 7/17/2023, By: 815WM
Info: Started from Vallecito Creek TH on 7/13 and camped in Chicago Basin on 7/14. The next day, the 15th, I started at 4:30am and soloed all four 14ers: Eolus - North Eolus - Sunlight - Windom. I summited the last peak at 12:30 pm on a perfectly clear bluebird day. None of the peaks have snow on the summit ridges. You still need to climb a bit of snow to gain each saddle. You can get away with just poles or an axe, but I still highly recommend spikes. The most(and steepest) snow field is still encountered gaining the ridge for Eolus. I met a group as I was coming back down from Windom that summited Eolus and N Eolus without spikes or poles! Sunlight and Windom still required snowfield crossings as well. I was glad I had my spikes and poles but these two are easier if you don't have the gear. After summiting the grand slam, I took a nap back in the basin before packing out over Columbine pass and all the way down to Vallecito Creek for a total of just over 18 miles on the day. 
1
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 7/8/2023, By: colekics
Info: Started from Purgatory TH and camped in Chicago Basin. The next day, the 6th, Three other guys and I hit up all four 14ers: Sunlight -> Windom -> North Eolus -> Eolus. Essentially, none of the peaks have snow on the summit ridges. You just need to climb a bit of snow to gain each saddle. You can get away with just poles or an axe, multiple guys in our group never used spikes but they can add comfort. Started moving at 3:30 but coming down from Windom saddle around 8:15, the snow began to soften just enough to glissade. Then the snow was softer going up to the Eolus saddle, and once we came down we got some really great glissading in. The most snow climbing exists going up the Eolus saddle. We also found a fully packed pack on the ridge direct of Eolus, so if someone left it please let me know. Just a reminder: STAY ON THE STANDARD ROUTES. We were climbing Sunlight when we watched a group of five people try to climb the FACE of windom from the saddle between Windom and Sunlight Spire. They were just in spikes, trying to cross 60 degree side hill hard snow to reach a continuous rocky outcropping to the top. I thought I was about to watch them slide into a rocky runout and we'd have to call SOS. They then proceeded to climb loose, steep Class 5 rock to the top. We met them at the top of Windom and talked to them. Just make sure to follow your GPS up there, know which saddles to gain in order to climb safely. 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 7/4/2023, By: mjordan
Info: Summited on July 1st and it was quite a spicy climb getting up to the notch before the summit scramble. We had just done Windom and Sunlight so it was about 11am while we were heading up N Eolus. Its continuous snow and there is no trail starting around 12,600ft until you get to the notch. At 13,400 on the ramp part of the trail it is continuous snow and a no-fall zone for about 100 yards traversing above the cliffs. We all did it with only micro spikes and trekking poles. The snow was soft so we were able to kick steps into the snow and traverse slowly. Im really not sure whether it would be better to do this in the morning when its icy or later when the snow is soft, I think its pick your poison and dont fall on the ramp whatever you do. The notch and ridge scramble are completely dry. We summited N Eolus then tagged Eolus and glisadded down from the bottom of the ramp around 3pm. 
2
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 6/23/2023, By: ballardwf04
Info: Hiked North Eolus on Tuesday, and it's still very snowy up there above 12,500. I made it up with spikes and poles but crampons/ax would make your life much easier. Due to the difficulty we had getting to the summit of North and how snowy Mt. Eolus looked, we decided not to go for the double peak. Glissading conditions are very in, that's for sure. Will have to make another trip to the Basin in the future. 
2
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 9/27/2022, By: HikesInGeologicTime
Info: Still a dry and otherwise fantastically easy walk-up, especially compared to its next-door neighbor. 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 9/20/2022, By: Buckie06
Info: Summer conditions 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 9/5/2022, By: shapovalovm
Info: Did the whole CBasin from Purgatory: Day 1: Started at 9:10. Parking was full, so I had to park near the community center (lots of additional parking there). Got to the basin by 2:45. Lots of people! Camped at 11200 Day 2: started 5:10, did 4 peaks, back to camp by 1pm. Started down at 1:30, back to the car by 6:50pm Peaks (in order): 1) Eolus: class 2 to the notch, perfectly cairned, no issues with navigation even in pitch dark. The catwalk is nothing to be afraid of, if you can walk in a straight line (it's like 3-4 feet wide at worst). Scramble up is easy. 2) N Eolus. A tiny baby scramble from the notch. Overall from Eolus it took me 25 min to get there 3) Sunlight: shit shute until 13800, horrible experience. But from there it's a ton of fun. No way it is class 4, though, even the summit block. The fall from there is to the nearest rock which is like 5 feet below. I understand it may be scary to people, but so may be the catwalk, but we don't call it class 4 do we? 4) Windom. Having done 3 peaks, this one felt hard. The views are fantastic though. Also, again, I don't think the rating is right. Haven't seen a single person who managed to summit it with no scrambling above the saddle, so should be class 3. If Sneffels and Kit Carson are class 3, this one definitely must be class 3 as well 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 7/4/2022, By: MountainBuhn
Info: (Pics on Mt Eolus review) Copying this info for all 4. Backpacked in from Purg on Friday 7/1. Started at 3:30 and got to the lowest spot in Chicago Basin at 9pm. Started the day on Saturday at 2:30am attempting all 4. Mt E: Clear of all snow. Catwalk is overrated imo. Ledges were far tougher (and longer). Some loose rock to deal with. We found staying under the ridge was the best option on the way up. Headed more straight east on the way down. N E: Easy, self explanatory, maybe a slightly sketchy move getting from the saddle of Mt E to the beginning of the climb if coming from Mt E. Pup made it up N Eolus with no help. Put him in a bag for ledges due to the rockfall potential. Sunlight: Started from Twin at 10:30am after resting after Eolus. Storm clouds were moving in but we decided to send it anyway (wouldn't recommend). Red gully was bad as advertised but not as bad as say sneffels scree or Wilson/Diente scree so it's relative. Got to notch with plenty of thunder but no lightning so we went for it. Class 4 move wasn't bad but tougher on the way down if you're shorter than 6'. I thought the move into the “chimney tunnel” was harder than the leap. Booted it off as thunder was heard straight above us. Pup stayed below class 4 move and my partner and I summited at different times. Windom: Weirdly my favorite. Boulder hopping up to the notch was tough. Notch up to peak was a blast. Pup needed a couple of butt shoves but besides that was good. Summit block of Windom was a blast. Definitely plenty of class 3 fun (the class 2 rank is just incorrect). Back to the lakes by 5pm. Somehow had no rain fall on us. It felt like there was a force field around the 4 peaks and we were just extremely lucky for a monsoon weekend. Basic ally summer conditions for all 4. Backpacked out 7/3 in 4 hours of rain (finally got us). Fun weekend. To summit all 4 in one day is something else. Would do sunlight again and spend more time at the top. Real calf burner 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 6/13/2022, By: fmv093042
Info: Route is clear other than 1-2 small sections of snow on the approach to the junction between Mount Eolus and North Eolus. I brought traction but never used them! The summit push is very stable and in great shape! Fun day doing Mount Eolus and North Eolus. 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 11/9/2021, By: nicoinco
Info: Copied from Sunlight post: I hiked into Chicago Basin over the weekend via the Purgatory Flats approach. Ended up summiting Sunlight, Windom, and North Eolus, but decided to turn around at the “catwalk” of Eolus due to what appeared to be unconsolidated and sloping snow on the ledges of Eolus. Sunlight was mostly dry and grippy above the gulley. Ended up with just under 45 miles and 13,000ft round trip for the weekend. I brought crampons, microspikes, poles, and an ice axe into the basin with me, but didn't end up using any traction. The poles were helpful for some post-holing at and above Twin Lakes, and I used my axe on Windom for added comfort traversing some short snow slopes towards the top. There was evidence of some sliding on the north face of Windom, so I'd be wary of any further attempts at the crossover from Sunlight with any new snow. Overall, less snow than expected and an excellent weekend alone in the mountains. 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 8/12/2021, By: PikaSteve
Info: Great trail to just below the catwalk. Solid scrambling after that. Medium haze. Can see Mt Wilson, Mt Sneffels and Rio Grande Pyramid. Some cell service. I will see if I can upload photos. 
3
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 7/10/2021, By: E_A_Marcus_949
Info: No snow on Mt. Eolus or N Eolus from Chicago Basin ~11k' to summit to contend with. Summer conditions. We started with N. Eolus then went over to Mt. Eolus. 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 6/25/2021, By: Will_Quillman
Info: Summer conditions on most of the route, I put gaiters and spikes on before reaching the saddle. My buddies skirted off route on the rocks to avoid the snow, so you definitely do not need this equipment to climb at the moment. This route was a tad boring but you can make it a little more fun by climbing off route if you so choose, like we did. Started from high up in the basin around 5am, summited in approximately 2 hours, so topped out around 7am. Headed back down and rode the saddle over to Eolus. 
6
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 8/22/2020, By: Clint the climber
Info: It's a long haul into Chicago Basin from Purgatory but well worth the mileage. There are multiple places to filter water along the way so no need to carry enough water for the entirety of the pack in. North Eolus is a great little walk-up from the saddle. If not for the summit, climb it for the views. 
3
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 7/13/2020, By: Sbenfield
Info: Summer 
Route: Chicago Basin Approach
Posted On: 7/11/2020, By: s mckinney10
Info: Hiked in from the Purgatory trailhead. Everything was in full summer conditions. There are a couple small snowfields to cross, but no traction is required for the ascent or descent. Lots of marmots and goats in the basin and around the twin lakes. 
Route: South Ridge
Posted On: 10/6/2019, By: TieDye
Info: Sunlight: S Face still totally dry. Windom: Fresh snow dustings are starting to stick around on the portions of the trail on the NW Face which lie in the northern shadow. Was fine without traction but watch your step. These snow dustings are accumulating on the NW Face and on top of the leftover snowfields. Went straight up a snowfield to the W Ridge instead of dropping all the way down. Fine in trail runners in the afternoon. Eolus: Similar to Windom, fresh snow dustings are starting to stick around on the ESE Face where the trail drops down from the ridge. No traction necessary around 6 PM. Watch your step. N Eolus: Totally dry. The snowfields from this past winter aren't going anywhere. All manageable without equipment at the times I was on them (times listed for reference). Everything else dry (approach, catwalk, whatever doesn't get caught in shadows all day). Still overwhelmingly summer conditions. Get it while you can! Overnighters said it got down to 17 F at whatever elevation that is Friday night into Saturday. Purgatory TH - 710 AM Animas River bridge at Wilderness border - 930 AM Twin Lakes - 1200 PM (15 minute lunch) Sunlight - 215 PM Windom - 400 PM Twin Lakes - 510 PM Eolus - 635 PM N Eolus - 705 PM Twin Lakes - 800 PM Animas River bridge at Wilderness border - 1045 PM Purgatory TH - 240 AM 41 mi, 11.1k vert, 19:30 TH to TH 

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