Explore Summit County - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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hiking
3 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.

Parking lot is excellent. It is large and well tended. Just make sure you're taking the trail you intend to. Its easy to mistakenly take Spruce Creek Road instead Spruce Creek Road. We hiked with crampons. Probably a poor choice because the snow is deep enough to require a snowshoes or backcountry skis. We were able to make it to Lower Mohawk Lakes with boots/crampons, but we unable to hike to Mohawk Lake because the snow was waist high. We saw 10 people total on this hike.

Hiked to Mayflower and Lower Mohawk Lake yesterday. Snow was gorgeous. The pup and I followed the path that was already packed down instead of following Spring Creek the whole way . Needed snowshoes about half way up and definitely needed them once I got to Mayflower Lake.

hiking
5 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!

Beautiful area! We hiked this trail this weekend and you definitely need snowshoes/skis. It was hard to find exactly where the trail cut off. We hiked near Mayflower Lake, the trail disappeared about 0.2 miles away from the lake. If you have good map skills you could navigate to mayflower lake.

Beautiful hike with lots of lakes and pretty views. Hiked this back in September. Saw mother and baby mountain goats. Not too many people on the trail, but definitely some traffic.

Hiked this 3 weeks ago and needed crampons to make it to the top. There are two ways to make it to the lake. One of them requires a rock scramble; but both are a steep climb. It's beautiful country and worth hiking it in the snow.

off road driving
17 days ago

Unique trail, no challenging spots unless your not paying attention.....We drove up it until the last switch back (4) counting mill because there was a snow drift over the road. On snow and ice will challenge your nerves for sure.. ‘16 4runner. Nitto Terra Grapplers.

We took this hike on 10/27. Trail was well groomed but covered in packed snow. it was manageable but much easier with hiking poles. We had a big group of varying skill level (and 2 pregnant women!). We made it past the 3 lakes close to Wheeler Trail and proceeded on to Mayflower Lake. We did not opt to go on to Lower Lake and Upper Lake because apparently it was very steep, icy in several spots. We explored around Mayflower Lake and took the loop back to the start. Beautiful day and a nice hike with good views once you get to the 3 lakes and especially Mayflower Lake. The mountain close by is Mt. Helen. We started at noon and finished around 4:30 with several stops, slow pace, and lots of pictures. Temp was fine in the 50s. We had a good time!

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!

on Quandary Peak Trail

22 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.

Such a lovely trail. We went out mid-day this past Saturday and the trail was fully covered in snow. We were able to make it up to just before lower mohawk lake and then decided to call it quits as we did not have spikes or poles and were slipping all over the place (we also had our large dog who was not having it by this point). If you are going and planning to make it to the lakes, I would definitely suggest spikes and poles. at the very least. Can't wait to go try again!

I ended hooking up with the Mineral Hill trail which was pretty flat and wrapped around the hill, going through several boulder fields. It would be very pretty when the aspens were changing.

Hiked this today, 10.18.18. Spikes needed only to ghost town but if you want to hike to ridge line, you will need snowshoes. Snow is deep about .25 miles on the trail to the right beyond wood gate. I postholed to my knees and turned around. Beautiful though.

hiking
30 days 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
30 days ago

Beautiful but lots of ice and snow now. Sketchy traction but lovely if you want to be surrounded by the mountains with rushing water and pines all around. Easy isn’t really a fair description of this area now with ice and snow packed walking areas but it’s still doable if you’re an average hiker

Spruce Creek trail is 100% covered in snow as of 10-15-18. if hiking above Mayflower lake then traction device recommended.
trail is beautiful in the snow. We saw moose at the little pond/Marsh area at junction of Spruce Creek and wheeler trail.
Lower Mohawk lake is gorgeous but the climb to get there is tough in the snow. A lot of sliding on the way back down.

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.

Absolutely beautiful the whole trip through. I LOVED it!

Wandering through the ghost town and up to the summit was wonderful.

Loved this trail! Get a little of everything, hike through the forest followed by hike up the mountain. Beautiful sceneries! Also, be prepared to feel like you are off the trail but I realized there are multiple paths up the mountain and multiple paths down, as long as you know the general direction you will make it

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.

hiking
1 month ago

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.

hiking
1 month ago

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!

The upper lot is a little over a mile above main lot. Trailhead signs point to Spruce Creek and Wheeler trails. Made it to next lake above lower Mohawk then turned back due to weather, about 3mi into hike. Upper lake another 1mi. A strenuous beautiful hike. Easy to lose trail past lower lake—follow AllTrails map closely. Interestingly the Burro trail from base of Peak 9 finishes about half way between upper and lower lots.

Gorgeous hike! Has everything: wildflowers, wildlife (big horn sheep!), waterfalls, and alpine lakes. It’s a bit beat at the higher altitudes to that point you question if you’re still on the trail at the rockier spots nears the lakes, but I found it to be an ‘all paths lead home’ situation. Enjoy.

Lotsa tree roots in this hike through the woods but worth the side views of the creek.

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