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This was my wife and my first 14er. Our friends carried their 2 year old and 4 year old with them. It took us forever but we had a blast. Didn’t make it to Torrey’s.

Road to the trailhead is 4 wheel drive only when we were there. Much of it is passable with a car but there are a few parts that a low clearance vehicle will definitely not make it across. This probably changes with rain and snow but definitely worth mentioning to be ready to hike the road or have a high clearance vehicle.

hiking
3 days ago

I did start on the class 3 side and do the entire loop it was well worth it if you don’t mind the danger and length. I would do it again just to camp at blue lake and then hike around. Just the popular trail took about 3 hours. It will take less than 5 for an average person I think just get there early for good parking on the weekend

hiking
7 days ago

Summited 11/13/2018. Gorgeous blue skies with intermittent cloud cover. Good snow pack through the trees. Above treeline was alternating solid pack and some post-holing. We mainly followed the “Old Quandary” trail, although with the snow it was difficult to be sure we were on trail most of the time. Wind came in semi-strong gusts at about 13k and up, but oddly stopped at the summit. Gear used and recommended for winter: Waterproof Boots, Gaiters, Microspikes, Trekking Poles, Heavy Jacket and Shell.

This was my first 14er. I chose this for my birthday and did it 10/19/18. I did not complete it because I underestimated the snow and attempted it 24 hours after leaving an elevation of 10 feet above sea level. I made it to 13,523 in about 6 hours and back down in 3 hours. I had to turn around because I was going alone and I left a deadline with friends and needed to make it back before they sent a search party. I will do this again in June after acclimating for a few days.

I had 4wd so I got to drive to the trailhead at 5:30am. I met 3 young men walking up the road and gave them a ride and learned they had just flown in from Miami a few hours earlier. We all struck out at 6am but they turned back after realizing they were too tired and in no shape to hike. I learned it is really cold at 6am there, I still have fingertips that tingle.

I learned a lot and can't wait to do this again when I am a little more prepared. The mountains were beautiful covered in snow but man that snow sucked to walk in. I questioned myself all the way down then decided I was coming back to conquer the mountain as soon as I could.

hiking
9 days ago

Hiked November 10. We started at about 8am. We didn’t summit and neither did anybody we passed (probably 15ish people total). We made it to about 13,000ft but the wind was too gnarly to make it the rest of the way.
We still had a blast, had a wonderful view, and were safe. If you’re planning on summiting bring some snow shoes and a good wind jacket and face protection! Hiking poles would probably be good too.
Definitely going to try again!

Great hike & gorgeous views along the way as well as at the summit. Not too difficult if you are in good shape. Some ice in the beginning to middle of the trail that turned into slush on the way back down in the early afternoon (boots definitely got muddy on the way down). Doable with just hiking boots, but yaktrax and hiking poles are helpful if you have them. A good amount of snow as well as wind during the middle to end of the way up to the summit. Top of the summit was quite windy and only stayed up there for about 15 minutes due to this. Way back down was much easier if you had a hiking pole to help with the snow & ice, but again, doable without. Would recommend multiple layers, hats & gloves, handwarmers to put inside gloves (those were a huge plus!), as well as a ski mask or something to pull up and over most of your face for the way down, as the wind was almost unbearable at points. Bathrooms are available in the parking lot at the start of the trail. I recommend starting in the morning (8am or earlier) in order to avoid some of the snow & ice melt that turns the trail into mud on the way down.

hiking
21 days ago

Awesome hike and views.. Not as challenging as some other 14ers but there was a good amount of snow and ice from the half way point up. If you want a more enjoyable hike definitely bring micro spikes and some walking poles. Poles aren't necessary but will make your hike easier. There is a false summit that leads to a bit of a scramble to actually summit. On the way down the spikes made descending much faster and easier. I took mine off about half way down as the weren't needed anymore. When you get about half way down all the morning ice and snow pretty much turns to mud.

Hiked in 10/20/18. We got to the trailhead at 6:30am before sunrise and there were a few other cars in the parking lot. Entire trail had some snow, but at that time it was all hard pack. Easy to follow the trail. Crampons not necessarily required but everyone in our group used them and they helped a lot, especially above the tree line. Beautiful views from the summit with crystal clear skies and light wind. Perfect day for my first 14er!

Great hike. it may have been 34 at the trail head but half way to the summit the wind had to be 30+ mph. Deeper snow as you head up to the ridge. Definitely need poles or micro spikes.

hiking
24 days ago

Did it today. Beautiful weather. Started at 8:30am, summited at 10:45am. Only stayed up there for 10 minutes and i think it took me about an hour and thirty minutes to get back down.
I put on my spikes about half way up. The snow was nicely packed, only deep in a few spots. It was windy in a few spots but not bad for the most part.
It wasn’t easy due to the wind but not very difficult since it’s a fairly short hike and there is zero exposure.
My first Colorado 14er!

hiking
24 days ago

We did this hike yesterday. Weather was 35 and sunny when we left the parking lot at 9:00. Beautiful hike. Beautiful day for the end of October. Nice and easy with a slight incline the first 2 miles. Packed snow on most of the trail. The last mile to the summit was kind of treacherous. Loose snow, very windy, cold. Yak tracks are a MUST. It was doable if you were set on doing a 14er in late Oct, but I were to do this hike again, I would go in August.

Mt. Yale was my first 14'er. I am from the midwest, so not use to seeing or hiking this type of terrain (mainly the elevation). It is not for the faint of heart, that is for sure. But I was in OK shape from running and decided to give it a go.

The river is the first thing you notice at the start of the trailhead. It's refreshing to hear the water rushing down as part of the snow melt. The trail is wide and easy to follow for the first several miles. There was a little ice and snow to deal with below the treeline. I was able to move at 2-4 mph for the first several miles before I decided that I should slow down and conserve energy. Later on, I would realize that was a wise decision.

Getting above the treeline was exciting and you really begin to see the beauty of this trail and climb. The initial part above the treeline is steeper but it "flattens out" for a ways (meaning the elevation gain is not too difficult). The most difficult part that day above the treeline was trying to navigate the trail with large swaths of snow. I lost the trail a few times due to the snow (it wasn't deep and I was up early enough that it was still in the shade, so no post holing). Once you get to the last 1/2 mile or so going up, it moves into a switchback that I couldn't find due to the snow. So, I could see where the false summit was, so I just decided that I was going to start heading up vertical...I did that for ~900' of vertical gain! The most challenging part here was the loose terrain and the fear in the back of my head that I wouldn't make it home to my wife and 3 kids :-) However, I took it slow to make sure I stayed safe.

Once I got to the false summit, it was another 200' up (vertical) having to hop and jump around large boulders. It was also VERY windy. The wind made this part very challenging. But the view up at the summit, seeing so many snow capped peaks, was breath taking. I ate my lunch up there, took it in for about 30 mins, and then headed back down.

One thing I will say, you feel so small when you are on top of a mountain. Great perspective on life from up there. I feel so important most days, but it was a very different feeling up there. Humbling and good for the soul.

The trek down was most difficult for me...didn't realized how much that would pound on my thighs. I had hoped to run down, but decided against it to stay safe. My legs were spent by the time I got down. I took a 3 hour nap that felt like 5 mins!

I'd highly recommend this route...the beauty of the trail is worth all the effort. The view from the top is breath taking. Have a blast!

on Quandary Peak Trail

26 days ago

Moderate to challenging trail. Those with knee issues or any leg issues; make certain you are
prepared with good poles and fitness level. I was not, so I learned the hard way. I’m happy I know what I need to do for the next time.

Had a great hike today. The trail is covered in a few inches of soft snow almost the entire way. It was easily doable with regular boots and poles, but definitely slowed us down. Took us almost four hours from the radio towers to the peak (and usually a hike like this would take us 2.5-3). Got back down to our car in 2.5 hours. The views from the peak were amazing- probably my favorite 14er views to date!

Of note, the road to the radio towers is rough with deep ruts in spots. There was very minimal snow on the road. My 2WD high clearance Ford Escape did fine, but this is probably at the limits of what my car can handle. For comparison, my car had no issues on the Grays and Torrey’s road or the road to Sherman.

One of the better beginner 14ers there are. Plan accordingly for the weather.

hiking
29 days ago

We left the trailhead at 9:30 am. There trail was covered in packed snow from other hikers. We passed others hikers leaving that couldn't summit because of the wind but by the time we got up there at 1:15pm there was no wind and an eerie silence. Beautiful views all around. Going down was slippery but felt that the packed snow around the rocks cushioned our steps. We made it down in 2 hours.

One of our favorite 14er hikes thus far and absolutely our favorite Peak link-up! A few key points:
1. Make sure you have All-Wheel drive. The road leading up to the trail head is extremely rocky and unsafe for non-sport vehicles.
2. The trail gets fairly gravely and sandy towards the top of both peaks - so you need hiking boots if you don't want to be sliding everywhere on the descent.
3. Weather rolls in very quickly on all 14er peaks - so start your hike EARLY (8am at the absolute latest) and pack layers/gear to prepare for all weather conditions - high winds, rain, hail and snow.

10/20/18 Amazing Hike!! Views are insaneeeeee. Make sure you have a 4x4 and not an all wheel drive...BIG DIFFERENCE... We had to pull a mini out of a ditch on the road up to the trail head. Because of that we decide to park at the base which will add an additional 6 miles round trip to your hike. So plan for hitting a half marathon along with your 14er if thats the case. Our total mileage ended up being 13.7 miles. Because of the additional mileage and the time spent pulling the mini out of the ditch we were only able to hit Grays. Also if you want a more enjoyable hike make sure you bring krampons and walking poles. Krampons at a minimum. It was ice and snow for the entire duration of the hike.

We hiked Grays on 20OCT2018. First off, if you plan on hiking this trail later October 1st, make sure you drive a 4WD capable vehicle to make it to the parking lot unless you want to add 5+ miles to your hike.
Plenty of snow along the trail. We hiked it without spikes or poles and that caught up to us on the way down. Other than the snow, which was the biggest issue, the hike was gorgeous! Met a couple of friendly folks throughout the trail. Even picked up three on the road up. My girlfriend was 5 months pregnant and we did our gender reveal at the top. Great time going up, miserable going down. Beautiful views!!!!

Hiked this one today, it my was my first 14er but I’ve been living In Colorado and hike rather frequently. Got to the parking lot at 9am and found open parking. The hike is long and mainly flat for the first hour, then starts climbing slowly and ends with a rock scramble up the last few hundred feet to the summit. Lots of packed down snow and icy/ slippery patches going up made it feel like walking in sand, very tiring. Coming down extremely slippery. If you do this one in the snow you absolutely need poles and yak tracks. Took lots of breaks along the way and had a picnic at the top. Took us 7hours round trip. Overall beautiful views and not too Terrible, snow made things slightly more challenging.

hiking
1 month ago

Climbed 10/17/18 This was my first 14er so I did not know what to expect. Once above the tree line the wind was crazy, I would guess 50-60mph. At times I would have to kneel down so I didn’t get blown over. Very Icy and deep snow at summit, I was just wearing hiking boots but I managed. Was snowing on top and glad I left early because it looked like it got worse on way down. All and all a great first for me.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked 10-13-18. Hit the trailhead around 0715 with barely any cars in the upper lot we were able to find convenient parking. The trail had about six inches of hard packed snow below tree line. Once you break through tree line there was a bit more snow but still hard packed. No need for snow shoes at any point the whole ascent. We did throw on micro spikes for the last 1000 feet of ascent and they were useful but not required. Wind picked up considerably on the summit and wasn't a fun place to spend more than ten minutes. A few more snow storms and snow shoes and/or spikes would be a great idea. Plenty of people who were not prepared or dressed for the elements, this always amazes me. All told, approximately 4.5 hours to summit and return to the car.

hiking
1 month ago

hiked 10-13-18. started at 9:20am. trail parking was already in overflow. first part of the trail was pretty icy. I would say overall 95% of the trail was packed snow or ice. only a few sections climbing up the rocks above tree line were dry. we did not use spikes but I would say 50% of the people we saw were using them. it was possible not to use them but was slipping all the way down. we did not make it to the summit. we decided it was not worth the risk without spikes as we saw people slipping down all the way. this is also the steepest part of the trail. as we came back down the sun had turned most of the ice and snow into slush. which made the slipping and sliding even worse. we were off the trail and to the car by 2:40pm.
we saw plenty of people later in the day hiking up in tennis shoes and not prepared for a hike of this caliber. no pack, lack of water, no spikes, etc. we even gave an extra bottle of water to one who was visibly struggling about half way up the trail. also, bring sunscreen. we did not and are paying the price. face is bright red and hurting. the wind, sun and snow reflecting sunlight was brutal.
we stopped at tree line and ate lunch. it took us 1.5 hours to get there. from there to the last 1000 foot climb to the summit it took us 2 hours. if we would have done the last 1000 climb I'm guessing another hour to the summit. on the way down I was surprised at how far it really was back to tree line.
overall this is a great hike with great views but don't underestimate it either.

Definitely a tough one with the snow! Make sure to have snow pants and waterproof boots through it. At some points you’ll be hiking through knee deep snow. The top is well worth it if you’re determined enough to get through!

First 14 for us. It was a beautiful day but there was a lot of snow on the ground. It was slippery on the way down. We got an early start and beat the crowds. The trail was well marked and easy to follow. The trail starts out very easy and starting before sunrise was great. The elevation was a factor for us near the top, but it’s a great hike.

Great 14er with some amazing views. Best as a sunrise summit.

Great climb. Went up 10/10/18, 3-6” of snow on the trail for the first 1.25miles. 1’ - 3’ feet! snow drifts from there on to the saddle. We were unable to make the peak due to conditions. Feet were soaked on the way down. 2hrs 50 mins up, 2hrs 10 mins down. Be smart. Be careful. We were the only car in the parking lot. Only ones out there.

parked at upper lot. have a Toyota highlander (lower clearance) and had a few sketchy spots driving. georgous views on the ridge around 13,000. last 1,000+ was steep, but so worth it. Beautiful, beautiful 360 views at the top. lots of boulders and rocks, steep in places. took me just under 3 hrs to the top. the soak in mt. Princeton hot springs after helped soothe the bones!

Hiked 10/7. Started at 8:30am., summit by 11:20am. Very windy most of the way. Strenuous hike.

Summited Oct 6.
Snowy clouds above treeline blanketed pretty much everything you could see. Thankfully it cleared a little at the peak! The entire trip took us about 6 hours with stops and very little time spent at the summit due to freezing winds. I did this hike with trail runners and no micro-spikes but today was probably the last day that's suitable footwear.

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