Cottonwood Peak A  
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2016-10-30  Route: standard-ESE via Thirsty
Posted On: 2016-10-30, By: tdawg012
Info: CR 198 was rough. High clearance and 4wd a must. The Hayden Pass fire affected a few stretches higher up between Balman Reservoir and Rainbow lake. Watch out for future downed burnt trees and more rocks. There were some microwave sized angular rocks on the road on the way down that weren't there the night before. Hike was fine, just some frosty rocks to deal with in the morning. 
2016-08-09  Route: Hot Springs Canyon Trail
Posted On: 2016-08-16, By: JasonKline
Info: Summer conditions. The water is fairly high, so expect to get wet feet. The grass is pretty high on the trail at times. 
2015-04-12  Route: West Ridge from Hot Springs TH
Posted On: 2015-04-13, By: doggler
Info: Late spring conditions as long as you‘re on west and south aspects. Ice axe only was used as snow was solid and low angle enough to not need any additional traction. Had it been a much warmer day, postholing could have been problematic on the descent. I chose this route based on the belief that there would be little in the way of snow coverage, and it did not disappoint. Some of the drainages further south (Major Creek, Cotton Creek, etc) probably are holding over 1k of ready-made cement and will for the foreseeable future. It seems not so much that things are melting off as much as there just wasn‘t much to melt in the first place. I drove by a sign in Salida that said the Arkansas was flowing something like 560cfs. 
2013-06-15  Route: via 13123B down ridge to Silver Lake
Posted On: 2013-06-16, By: IHikeLikeAGirl
Info: Eagle/Lakes/"Thirsty"/13123B/Cottonwood ridge loop - 99% snow free. Any snow encountered can be easily avoided. 
2013-02-03  Route: Hot Springs Canyon Trail
Posted On: 2013-02-04, By: Wyoming Bob
Info: First the stats, 2wd dry road to the TH, then 6" or so up to the canyon mouth, good swale and now a set of tracks. Then 6" goes to 1" by the time you get up to the Wilderness Boundary, four pass trench from here to the saddle. Then in the darker tighter parts, the depth goes from 18 to 24 inches, powder and no crust. It stays deep and loose all the way to the treeline and that means just about the saddle. Then rocks, ice and some wind hammered patches, good enough for heels on the way down but not quite enough on the way up. This trail is merciless as to vertical gain but it never comes out and tells you that you are getting worked. It just climbs with every foot, no step ups, no steep sections, just a gentle lead upward that ends up exhausting the quads and suddenly leaving you at 13k and looking back down a rather steep course. The rest of the story is we bashed our way up through the snow for 7 hours to just get to the 13,047 point to see the summit, another mile along the ridge, at 3 p.m. A peak that we realized was too far and we were just beat to heck by the 5 miles up through the snow. 3 p.m., quads gone, scud on upper San Juans, getting cold and then the wind started and the temp started to drop. We read the cards and it was clear that the gig was up. Enough was enough and we were outbound to arrive at the TH at 6 p.m. No sour grapes as to the 8 a.m. start, we got two summits in January and this proved to be the beating that comes with winter climbing. *** Cough *** P. >> I scoped out you and W.W.‘s 13‘er liss which are as shy of Cottonwood as mine is shy of White. If you and W.W. have playing hookie in mind, there is a good trench the whole way to the saddle. As for White . . . and Mamma, I was literally thinking "I wonder if anyone has taken a snow machine or stomped a trench up that road?" as I drove south on Saturday evening to Salida. 
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