Peak(s):  Mt. Harvard  -  14,420 feet
Date Posted:  07/21/2012
Date Climbed:   07/20/2012
Author:  The Old Fart
 Downed Trees Blocking Mt Harvard Trail  

Here's some beta for those of you who will be climbing Mt. Harvard or Mt. Columbia this year.
The section of trail from just after the second bridge (counting the bridge near the TH) up to tree line is blocked in many places by downed trees.
I saw as many as five good sized trees blocking the trail in one place.
For each of the blocked trail sections, if the trees are too high to climb over and too low to sneak under, there is a bypass trail.
Look for a bypass on the root-end of the tree.
This will slow you down, but not by much.

The good news is that the forest service is hard at work cutting away these fallen trees.
The (sort of) bad news is that, because it is a wilderness area, no motors are allowed so they are cutting the trees to clear the trail using a 2-man 6-ft. crosscut saw just like you grand daddy used to use. They are working from the lower end of the trail up.

Also the missing sign at the intersection of the Horned Fork Basin trail and Kroenke Lake trail has been replaced.

On another note: The Forest Service has plans in place to reroute the terrible Columbia Scree Slope Trail as the current one is not good for the mountain. This project has just begun and it will be about four years before the new trail is completed and available. If you need Columbia to complete your Sawatch 14ers, you may want to wait four years. Everything you've heard or read about Columbia's terrible scree slope is true!

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions

good news
07/22/2012 13:20
It's not bad news at all that the FS is using hand saws instead of motorized ones! Yes, it's slower, but it's quieter, and it means that the authorities are respecting the same rules they expect us to obey.


All clear!
08/08/2012 07:20
All the downed trees are cleared from the trail as of yesterday, 8/7. Though all of the trunks are still on the sides of the trail, so be wary of any long skinny ones poking on out. I saw one out on my way down that was not out in the morning. Quite a sight to see just how many trees are down right before and after the second bridge!

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