Humboldt Peak  
Report Conditions Information   Photos  Comments       
2016-03-05  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-03-06, By: Brian Thomas
Info: The overnight low before the hike was about 20F. We hiked to treeline in only microspikes, above treeline it is mostly bare ground. We wore snowshoes below treeline on the way down with minimal postholing, one in our group did not have snowshoes and didn't posthole that badly, but it was partly cloudy and not much above 40F during midday. Starting at 6:20 start to finish in just under 10 hours. 
2016-02-28  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-02-28, By: tobiasfunke
Info: Snow is mostly consolidated, even below treeline. Above treeline it is windblown and solid. Microspikes (or winter boots with an aggressive sole) are mandatory. Snowshoes are optional. A solid trench is in place all the way to treeline, but there are some spots where postholing will occur, particularly around the flat areas at treeline. If you don't like postholing, bring the flotation. Prepare for a long day either way since you'll be starting from the 2WD trailhead, and the road is completely packed with snow. Weather was warm and sunny with basically no wind during the day, highly unusual for winter! 
2016-02-20  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-02-20, By: My-Therapy
Info: Three of us hiked Himboldt today and all agreed snowshoes were NOT nessacary. We used Microspikes for most of the hike (except above tree line) and were glad we had them. Windy most of the day, took us just under 10 hours round trip including all stops/breaks and summit time. Great packed easy to follow trail in place. About a dozen people total on the mountain. Don't bother trying to drive past the 2wd trail head. 
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2016-02-15  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-02-15, By: dogballs
Info: Nice stroll up Humboldt today. Trench is well defined going up the East Ridge. Snowshoes are recommended unless you like playing post hole roulette. Above treeline there are some snow patches which eases ascent/descent. Halfway up to the 13,200 point the slope is blown clean and remains that way until the final summit ridge. Micro spikes were a definite help on the upper sections. Very windy today. Gusts up to 60mph had me hunkering down a couple times. Had to stay to the south side of the ridge proper to avoid the high winds. Winds died slightly on the way down and once you are back in the trees they are irrelevant. It took 6hr20min to reach the summit as the wind really slowed progress. Round trip ended being 10hr04min. Long day but the views were spectacular. Go and get it. Just be prepared for high winds and keep pushing. 
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2016-02-14  Route: Southeast Flank Gully
Posted On: 2016-02-18, By: rutterj
Info: There was a solid amount of snow to skin from the 8800 foot summer trailhead-though it might have melted up a bit by now. There is plenty of snow below treeline, but it quickly disappears above. I mostly hiked on loose talus to the peak, but was able to find enough snow to ski from about 13000 feet on the southeast flank. 
2016-02-13  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-02-14, By: RyGuy
Info: Humboldt‘s east ridge is in excellent shape right now. From the 2WD parking lot to the Rainbow Trail is packed with snow mobile tracks. From the Rainbow trail turn off to the ridge line has a solid trench in place. The trench from last weekend‘s crew was also re-modeled and smoothed/widened today. Once you get to treeline, it‘s pretty dry except for some snowfields that are extremely hard packed. Summit is totally dry. Snowshoes still needed, microspikes needed. Crampons would be overkill currently. 
2016-02-10  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-02-11, By: aholle88
Info: Road is packed down by snowmobiles to the upper South Colony trailhead, microspikes recommended but not necessary. Below treeline: Solid trench in place thanks to the crew on Saturday all the way to treeline on the East Ridge route makes things go very quickly with none of the usual route finding issues, snowshoes required. Make sure to follow the snowshoe track and not the skin track that goes directly up in some spots, you will post hole with snowshoes in the skin track. Above treeline: spikes optional, mix of grass and satrusgi up the first steep section, minimal snow on the ridge proper. Southeast flank: much less snow than the Saturday crew had, talus hopped to around 13-13.3, then was able to ride back to the car. Icy, hard snow above treeline, spring slush below. A note on the weather, don‘t believe the forecast. It was calling for 10-15mph winds, and it was up to 40-60mph gusts on the ridge above treeline which made it very tough going. Be prepared for anything. 
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2016-02-07  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-02-07, By: jmsibert
Info: Snowshoe trough now in place to treeline. Largely wind-scoured or minimal post-holing on the ridge above the treeline. 
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2016-01-23  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-01-25, By: _hay_bails_
Info: The peak conditions were similar to the last report, as there wasn‘t any significant snow accumulation in the past week. We turned off the Rainbow Trail at .4 miles. Don‘t get discouraged in the trees at the steepness! Snowshoes were needed, despite a nice snow trench almost up to treeline. Once out of the trees, it is extremely windswept and dry. There‘s also a picture of snow conditions on Broken Hand Pass. 
2016-01-17  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-01-19, By: BobbyFinn
Info: South Colony Lakes Road is very well packed by snowmobiles/hikers/skiers. No flotation was needed, but it did make the walking a little easier. The Rainbow trail turnoff is well signed and there is a packed trench on the Rainbow Trail. We left the Rainbow Trail about .4 miles from South Colony Lakes Road where it was obvious that other parties had done the same. There‘s a good trench/packed trail to treeline. We used snowshoes and they definitely helped, but you might be able to get by without them. Above treeline is windswept and has only patchy, firm snow - we walked on a lot of grass and rock. No flotation was needed above treeline. Upper parts of the route are pretty clear of snow, but there is definitely some snow along the route and microspikes made the descent easier/safer. Avy danger on this day was very low. Storms may change the conditions. 
2016-01-02  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2016-01-02, By: pmreyn2010
Info: I just wanted to share a few thoughts from my experience today heading up towards Humboldt‘s east ridge. Same conditions apply to the trailhead as they did last week... the 2WD TH is where you can park at this point. Most of the road is completely snowed over... from what I could see, a couple of cars have tried to make it up to the mile marker but from the tracks left behind, looks like they had an interesting experience! Save yourself a headache! Walking on the road, microspikes were all that were necessary since in general there was a well packed down trail. From the turnoff onto the Rainbow Trail, we didn‘t put on our snowshoes... there were a couple of messy parts (and we postholed a couple of times on that first gradual ridge), but in general, the trail was packed down enough that again, microspikes were all we needed. One thing to note: the route description says that about .2 miles after the bridge, you can turn off of the RT and gain the small ridge. As of late, no one else has done this. What was packed down was the ‘alternate‘ way to gain the ridge (add another .2 miles or so to the RT and then turn left... it was an obvious turn). Where we did put on our snowshoes was when we turned NW to go up the ridge. Jclark217 had said that they thought they went wrong on their route finding. However, I don‘t think they did. We followed what they had done up to about 10,600‘ or so. (They were clearly the last people who had attempted the east ridge since the tracks stopped where they said they did). Yes, the route is a bit steeper, but I felt that where we were snowshoeing matched the route description. My friend & I ended up breaking trail all the way up to tree line and a bit beyond. The snow condition was the same as it was on 12/29. It was loose and powdery; nothing had consolidated. It definitely was a good work out since there was a good amount of postholing. You can follow the trench we put in up to about 12,200‘. We ended up turning around at this point since it was getting later in the day & we didn‘t want to deal with the route through the forest without light. While the first couple of miles went really fast, the slog up to tree line took a while. Be careful as you descend though through the forest. Because the snow is loose (even after being packed down by snow shoes), it‘s easy to slip, even with traction. Watch your footing! Hope this helps; have fun out there! 
2015-12-05  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2015-12-08, By: Brian Thomas
Info: The trench put in per the 11/29 CR on this route is gone. There is an intermittent ski/snowshoe track to the upper 4WD TH as of 12/5 but beyond that you‘ll be breaking trail in 2-3 feet of snow. Pic is looking north from the road toward Rainbow Trail to East Ridge. 
2015-11-29  Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2015-11-30, By: tylerrust413
Info: We parked at the lower trailhead due to the road being snowy/icy. Tried driving higher, but only got about 0.5 miles further. Trail had been broken on the road to the Rainbow Trailhead turnoff previously. We broke trail through shin to thigh deep snow (especially once you leave Rainbow Trail) up to roughly 11,000 ft before turning around due to heavy snowfall and deteriorating visibility. 
2015-09-20  Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2015-09-22, By: alpinenut
Info: 9/12 report is spot on. If you‘re coming from Needle trail make sure you make note of the crossover trail the Upper Colony Lake/Humboldt trail on your way up. You have to turn right near the E end of the lake. It‘s clearly an intersection but not as obvious as you would think as you‘re coming down. 
2015-09-12  Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2015-09-17, By: TallGrass
Info: Clean and dry. Lots and lots of cairns from the saddle onward. Trail often gets lost in upper talus, but searching for cairn to cairn will guide you through. Bit of easy class 3 or 2+ needed to get up some blocks right before the summit level. Two rock windbreaks with one at the summit and another on the eastern end. Western false summit is less rocky with a bit of soil and gravel. 
2015-09-12  Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2015-09-12, By: 81trucolors
Info: S. Colony Lakes road is very drivable now by a 4wd vehicle. Pretty straightforward. The trail is dry and in good shape. A few cairns below the false summit are hard to find but the goal is obvious so it doesn‘t really matter. 
2015-09-08  Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2015-09-11, By: Sunshineof1985
Info: Hi my name is Kristina! This is my 41st fourteener this summer. My goal is to climb them all this summer. You can read more about this hike and others at! Enjoy! Distance (Upper Parking Lot to Upper Colony Lake): 4.3 mi. (one way) Distance (from Upper Colony Lake): 3 miles (Round trip) Total Elevation Gain from Upper Colony Lake: 2,000 ft. Time started (from Upper Colony Lake): 7:30am End time (back to Upper Colony Lake : 10:55am Time to Summit Humboldt Peak from Upper Colony Lake: 2 hours Time to Descend Humboldt Peak to Upper Colony Lake: 1 hour and 10 minutes *GEAR (to bring): FOR 2 NIGHTS & 2.5 DAYS if trying to bag all three mountains (Crestone Needle, Crestone Peak & Humboldt. Bear spray, water purifier, first aid kit, sleeping pad, sleeping bag, headlamp, flashlight, toilet paper, GPS, extra batteries, extra socks, phone, SPOT Satellite Tracker, Map, Topo Map from, hiking boots with 2 pairs of socks on, extra change of clothes, wear a tank top, long-sleeve, wind-guard/raincoat, light weight puffy coat, lightweight gloves, winter hat, overnight pack with water sack and extra water (160oz), food for 3 full days (large bag of jerky, large bag of trailsmix, 6 protein bars, and 6 granola bars or more). *Road Condition: My sedan made it all the way to the upper trailhead! I did scrape the underside of my car a couple times, but nothing serious. It will take guts, but it can be done! *Trail Condition: Easy to follow, but muddy in some spots. From the final junction to Humboldt‘s peak, the trail is dry, easy stone steps at first, then you‘ll be climbing boulders and some harder class 2 moves will arise. There is a false summit, but getting to the real summit is easy. There‘s little elevation gain. Also- it‘s cold and windy. 
2015-09-07  Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2015-09-08, By: joyfulwriter
Info: Beautiful Labor Day on Humboldt. Road to 4WD TH is in decent shape and passable for most vehicles (we had a RAV4). Trail is also in very good shape - no issues to report. Very windy from TH to summit, though there were periods of calm later in the morning. Some people reported having to crawl on all fours near the summit. Great views of the surrounding peaks as the clouds cleared around noon. 
2015-08-23  Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2015-08-23, By: gabsimonelouise
Info: Fairly wet trail till the final ascent, but not much of the muddy stuff, so easily avoidable. We hiked Humboldt at sunrise, and we made two route errors in the darkness: 1) when we reached the willows, the trail appeared to go straight at one point and we soon found ourselves bushwhacking; this is NOT the route! If you find yourself bushwhacking, turn back immediately and find the main trail off to the right about 5 yards after you start bushwhacking. 2) Stay to the right as you go up the final ascent; we accidentally went left for a while and were walking on a section with sheer dropoff to our left. Not the trail! Final word of caution if you are hiking Humboldt in the dark: we started second guessing that we were on the correct trail as we reached the willows because of all the headlamps to our left. We quickly realized the Crestone trail parallels the Humboldt trail on the left hand side of the willows for a while. Know that you are on the correct trail for Humboldt, don‘t dismay! There just won‘t be as many headlamps (or none at all) on the Humboldt trail. 
2015-08-12  Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2015-08-13, By: Meags33
Info: Road isn‘t too bad for cars with decent clearance. Beautiful colors for mid August and gorgeous hike. 11.6 miles from the summer trail head. Got out around 6am and only ran into one other person on the way up and had the place to ourselves. Well worth the steep switchbacks and final steep but (mild) mile boulder scramble up the top. 

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