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hiking
1 day 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.

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.

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.

We hike QP on September 17, 2018- It was as advertised- beautiful views, open air, and rocky. We flew in from PA and strongly recommend taking a couple days of the altitude in prior to the hike. Also- we were in really good shape- and this hike challenged us. The altitude forced us to take a break about every 5-10 mins as we ascended near the peak- the pressure is intense. Its all worth it- but hydrate and take breaks. The climb down is LONG bc you are physically tired- both of our hands were swollen. I would do this hike again but def dont want newbies to think its a walk in the park. Enjoy!

Oct 5th my son Morgan and I completed. Spectacular views great weather , a bit cold very windy. Took six hours round trip. Lots of stops. It is a tuff trek.

This hike was to ascend my 4th 14er- expecting it to be a bit easier than Mt Belford and Mt Oxford which I also climbed this year. Quandary Peak was a steep elevation gain in a short distance- thus the nearly constant climbing. At 58 yrs old, it was a challenge but enjoyable all the same!

Finished the ascent in 3 hours and 10 minutes- 2 hours and 30 minutes to get down. Left the trailhead at 7am and was moving along as quickly as possible as a chance of rain was predicted for 11:30am. As it turned out- at the summit, the clouds were beginning to roll in and as I began my descent- the grapple began to fall! The wind was high today- also making it slightly cold and precarious at the top every once in a while.

The trail is well marked and maintained as 14er trails go- with some difficulty staying on Trail when traversing the rock and boulder field toward the top. There were about 15-20 fellow hikers on the trail today- a welcomed reality since I was hiking alone. This is a great trail but the 2+ hours exposed to the elements could be risky on a bad weather day! Today, small patches of snow but no ice- so a non-factor.

Overall, a great hike- wish I had seen the famous Quandary goats and sheep, though!

My first 14er today at Mt.Bierstadt. It starts out not too bad, but I agree with these other comments, the elevation totally got to me and I felt like I had to stop constantly towards the steep part of the trail. Still feels like a great accomplishment! No mountain goats or any wildlife that we saw. Super windy at the top, so we did not stay long up there! With windchill I believe it was close to 15 degrees.

Better than I thought. I went on a Monday so there were fewer ppl. I less than a day if you start around 6:30. You could drive to Quandary or something and get that one done too if you have a good pace. It is a rocky and the abandoned mines are pretty neat. Overall I enjoyed what it had to offer.

Truly an awesome experience. So glad to do it. And the dogs loved it too. Moderately full lot. Don’t go all the way to the top of the parking lot without high clearance. Keep an eye out for active mines on the road up and ruins of mines throughout the hike. Perfectly sunny day but it was entirely above 12,000 feet on the last day of September so I wore ski hat, ski mittens, ski pants and a fleece the whole way. Started up Democrat at 730a. Democrat is pretty steep. About 1 3/4 hours to that summit. Went back down to the saddle then up Cameron. It’s tough but not as tough as Democrat. Cameron has several false summits. Only about 900 vertical instead of 2,100-2,200. Another 1 1/4 for that leg. Cameron is a weird domed summit and then you feel like you’re taking a leisurely walk down to the Lincoln saddle. You don’t even feel like you’re descending but you do about 200 feet. Lincoln is by far the most interesting looking of the mountains and you can ram up the 250 feet or so on a very well worn trail in 20 minutes or so. Take the same trail down Lincoln and take an easy traverse around the side of Cameron to Bross. Another gentle trail brings you up Bross. We headed down the trail from Bross at noon (4 1/2 hours) and oh crap that’s when it gets hard. I forgot my poles at home and really regretted it. Don’t be that guy: bring your poles. I read other reviews on this site about the scree field going down Bross and thought people were exaggerating. They’re not. This was an hour and a half of making sure each step doesn’t send you sliding off the mountain. I loved it once I was done as that descent was one of the more challenging experiences of my life. But I could see where many people would only want to do Democrat and Cameron (once you go down Cameron to the Lincoln saddle, you either have to descend via Bross or summit Cameron again). A perfect day for me and the dog did fine, but this full loop is not for everyone.

We are from Houston TX and this was our first 14ner . I thoroughly enjoyed the experience . The views along the way are out of this world . The trail only gets more and more difficult. I experienced headache and nausea only on my way down. The ascent is very doable but please take as many water breaks as u need. I recommend taking your time with plenty of water and high energy snacks. I also recommend training yourself physically a few weeks before the hike so it is more of an enjoyable experience.

Pretty easy hike for a 14er until you get to the saddle, then it gets a little technical. We went really slow with this one for a total of 10 hours. Started at 630 and was off the mountain still in plenty of time. If you get a nice weather day in the fall I would highly recommend, the Aspen trees were some of the most beautiful I've seen. Of the 12 14ers I have hiked, this was one is up there as far as a good hike and beautiful views. Enjoy!

My first 14er. It felt pretty moderate to me, no section of the trail felt hard. Beautiful views from the summit and good colors on the aspens down low. 9-30-18

Lower parking wide open at 6:40 on Sunday 9/30. Gorgeous views all the way up and down. Trail well maintained. No need for micro spikes today. Lots of people but everyone is so happy outside :) took us 4 hours to summit including snack stops and layering on and off.

Saturday Sept 29, great weather, winds brisk but not terrible. Tougher than I expected but completed in 5 hours 10 minutes. Views good, disappointed not to see any goats, fewer hikers than expected but still a pretty busy trail. No trekking poles but they would be handy on the descent.

we did this hike today and it wasn’t too bad. it was pretty easy as far as the trail goes, but then the elevation was kind of an issue when you got asthma. nothing a puff can’t fix tho jaja.

the wind was wicked at the summit so we didn’t spend a lot of time there. the views were worth the work and dealing with so many people.

My 1st 14er definitely tough the views were amazing throughout. the winds were super chilly at the top. definitely layer, coming down we saw a couple of people with minimal clothing. Don't underestimate this hike and be prepared.

Was really windy. Got to the trail at 5 and climbed bross route first. It was a bit of scree and loose rocks. We made it for sunrise. It's nice to have the wind shelters on top. We left and got destroyed by wind on our way to Lincoln. Wasn't to hard to grab the second one, we were done with that and then Cameron at 8 or so. then came down to the base of Democrat ate some, and were up to the top at 10. Down to the car at 11. So about 6 hours total. bring Lots of layers because of the wind, heat, cold. Amazing views, most of the work is at the beginning and end.

Hiked and summited on Sept 21, last day of summer. Great hike, really good weather, dress in layers,, I always use trekking poles. As stated in many reviews before, last 1/2 mile pitch is a beast. Really good trail, Co. mountian initiative workers were on trail at about 13,500, moving rocks, doing great work. Really appreciated it, and told them so. Those guys and gals are ironmen I swear. Saw mountain goats really up close, good pix, but stayed our distance. upper trail head parking on that Friday, 5 cars at 5:15am, capacity of only 7, some limited road parking. About a 7 hour hike total for us with stops, pix and lunch, great views and comaraderie, on trail and summit. First 14er for us, got more on the list for next year, met new friends, amazing day!

hiking
15 days ago

So beautiful. We started at 10:30am and it took us about 6 hours. We had a little one on our backs so we took lots of snack/picnic breaks. Quite windy at the top so I recommend you dress accordingly.

A great first 14er to wear out a flatlander

Rocky covered with scree a d talus. Trailhead at about 12000, well above treeline. Easily accessible from hwy 285 just south of Fairplay north on County Road 18. Travel on this dirt road until a closed gate parking along the road in front of the gate where ever available. Parking is suitable for a weekend crowd. The dirt road is flanked by a healthy forest of limber and bristle cone pines. There is a short trail called Limber Pine Trail along the way that flanks a creek filled with willows. Great for possible moose sightings. The hike from the closed gate to the summit of Mt. Sherman is about 2.5 miles and about 2100 feet elevation gain. There is a very short area of exposure along the ridge near the top as well as strong winds.There are two false summits as well. Like any alpine peak, the view from the summit dismisses all experiences of wind rocks and fatigue. Great hike for a first 14er. It was considerably easier than most of the other alpine hikes I did this past summer. Sadly, I missed the wildflowers on this peak due to the lateness of the season.

hiking
18 days ago

Got there at 7am on a Tuesday (9/26) and there were still plenty of parking spots. Wasn’t crowded at all. Make sure you bring a wind breaker, gloves, a hat, and plenty of water. 2liters was just enough to get me through the last stretch on the way back. Trail is well mAintained. Saw big horn sheep and mountain goats while I was up there! Started at 7:30 and I reached the summit at 10:30. I’m coming from below sea level so I took a lot of breaks to catch my breath. The hike wasn’t too hard in my opinion, but I’m in shape and exercise regularly.

hiking
18 days ago

Upper trailhead parking was full by 7:15 on a Tuesday, so we parked in the lower trailhead lot. Lower trailhead parking has porta potties (upper lot does not) and is only about 5 minute walk to the upper lot/trailhead, so don't even bother with the upper trailhead parking. The trail is extremely well maintained, still dry (light snow in spots) and very easy to follow. If you take it slow and make frequent stops, this is a doable 14er. The trail wasn't very crowded, and we had the summit to ourselves. It took us 3.5 hours to summit, and 2.5 hours to descent, which included a long snack break since the summit was extremely windy. Layers/hat/gloves are essential, and trekking poles if you have them. This is one of those annoying mountains where the descent is almost as tough as working your way up. Lots of loose rock on the trail. But it's worth it. The views are amazing, and there were lots of mountain goats (and a baby goat!) The goats seemed super nonchalant, though, so just walk slowly by them and don't be an idiot, and they're fine. I can't imagine doing this on a summer weekend. Shoot for early fall/midweek if you can. The threat of thunderstorms diminishes, and crowds drop off substantially. I'd probably recommend Bierstadt over Quandry for a "starter" 14er, but this was a great hike.

Got to parking lot about 6:20AM. Only about 6 other cars were there. Temperature was 26 degrees F. Got to trail head at 6:30AM. I started out strong. Made it to 12000 elevation by 7:30 and 13000 feet by about 9AM. Then things became very difficult because of the altitude and my 70 year old legs. Also trail was hard to follow at the 13250 feet point. Finally headed back about 10AM with the peak in sight about 1/2 mile away but with about 750 feet more elevation to go.

Legs were very rubbery on way back. The trip down took as long as the trip up because of tired legs trying to negotiate the snow.and ice covered steps and rocks. Managed to fall a couple of times including a dip in the creek crossing on the way back.

The hike was much more difficult than I thought it would be. Finally 7 hours later at 1:30PM, made it back to car. I'm still glad I did this for as you may have heard, if something doesn't kill you it makes you stronger.

FYI, I'm a 70 year old male using wife's account.

Roommate and I completed the trail in ~4.5 hrs, which we feel pretty good about considering how out of shape we are. No snow yet, but a lot of the trail is loose gravel/scree, and by the end I was wishing for my knee brace. It was extremely windy up on the ridge but calm at the summit. My little '07 Honda Fit made it all the way up to the trail head just fine -- can't say I'd recommend it, but if your only option is a low-clearance vehicle, it's doable.

hiking
20 days ago

Gorgeous. Tons of mountain goats.

Beautiful views, great for hiking in off-season (late fall/winter). Not anything gnarly like other 14ers, but it’s a great first one.

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