This Meetup is cancelled

Mt. Quandary 14,265’ -- winter-conditions high altitude boot &/or snowshoe hike

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    Not in a Quandary about go vs. no go - it's a 'no go' under these conditions for me

      Hazardous Weather Outlook
    Saturday: Snow and areas of blowing snow before 11am, then snow likely after 11am. High near 17. Wind chill values as low as -13. Windy, with a west wind between 37 and 47 mph, with gusts as high as 75 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches possible.

    Since this is one of the shortest hikes of a possible winter 14'er I hope we will be able to repost this for another, better weather, day.

    We’re in a Quandary or On the Quandary, Peak 14,265’


    Mt. Quandary will be a winter-like single day ascent of one of the State’s easier to access and easier to climb in winter high peaks. It may be a walk-up in difficulty however we will treat this with winter respect and seriousness. 7 miles round trip with ~3650’ elevation gain will make for a full day. Expect to take 4 hours on the ascent and 2.5-3 for the return. A determination will be made ~Thursday the 17th, based on detailed weather forecast if the trip will 'go' or be postponed. 


    Meet in GJCO at 4:45 so we can be on the road by 5 AM. It will be a little over a 3 hour drive if road conditions are pretty good to good. We’ll take I-70 to Frisco then CO Hwy 9 south to Breckenridge and ~6.5-7 miles beyond to the Monte Cristo Cr turn-off before reaching Hoosier Pass. If you are coming from other locations please paln your time accordingly to be at the trailhead by ~8 - 8:15 AM.

    BRING (items with a * are required; others are suggested or optional):

    * sturdy and warm footwear (please, no ‘new’ boots), appropriate non-cotton socks

    * snowshoes with a traction bar/ crampon (can rent from REI and maybe Summit Canyon)

    * Kahtoola Micro-Spikes (Ice grippers like no others. Can often take the place of crampons. Can buy at REI. $60 and worth many times that amount in safety and security under foot)

    *gaiters (knee-high to keep snow out of boots and lower legs warm & dry) 

    * dress in non-cotton layers so you can shed or add clothing as the day, the wind, your energy vary (No cotton clothing: no jeans, work shirts, socks. Anyone expecting to go in jeans will be asked to not go with us)

    * windproof jacket with a hood

    * windproof pants (preferably with full-length leg zippers; do not wear insulated downhill ski pants, you’ll roast)

    * Warm hat(s), gloves/mittens, windproof nylon over-mittens, neck gaiter

    * ski goggles and sun glasses 

    * water (at least 2 quarts on the trail. If you bring a Camelback, have tested the tube to be sure it will not freeze)

    * high energy snacks, quick easy lunch that will not require a sit-down to eat

    - trekking/ ski poles (optional though strongly suggested. Be sure to use the full size snow baskets, not the 1’ diameter summer baskets)

    - thermos of hot beverage (one for the car and another for the trail)

    - other items may be added or feel welcome to use any winter gear checklist you have access to in a book or on the web.


    If you know from prior experience that your dog's paws will not ball up with snow, that they will not get so cold as to force you to turn back early, that the dog  will not run off chasing ptarmigan or voles and not come back . . .  then feel welcome to bring Fido along.


    For such a long drive one &/or the other is suggested. For GJCO, we can work out the details Saturday morning or by email a day or 2 before. Others, please plan accordingly.


    The 14' web site has weather that is pretty specific to the area very near many of the peaks so we do not have to rely on metro weather reports to get good beta.

    Looks like a lot of snow is falling and blowing as of Nov. 12. I strongly suggest we will  want snowshoes (for down low in the trees)  and Kahtoola micro-spikes (for up high on the wind swept ridge).


    Doug Van Etten[masked]

    Gear suggestions and comments:

    If you have any doubts about my rave reviews of Kahtoolas or their price, pls look at the reviews on Keep in mind too, if you buy them at REI and find you are the one person in 81 reviews on Amazon who what not 100% sold on them, you can take 'em back for a full refund.





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  • A former member
    A former member

    Dan, I applaud your support of Doug's call! He spends many weeks and sometimes even MONTHS planning some of his events. His #1 concern for this group is SAFETY and when he has to make the difficult decision to cancel an event there is certainly nobody more disappointed than him. Sorry, but sometimes I wanna slap some of the other members who don't understand that.

    November 18, 2011

  • daniel lee w.

    Doug this probably a good idea, I as well as others pull from your wisdom. All to often I have read or heard of people trying to go on what was to be a simple mountain treck to only end up in a tragic loss.I joined W S A to be with the comfort of the experienced, and achieve goals. So we didn't make it this week end, the wind won't blow those mountains away! I am still psyched on the next one! So stay on my scheduleand, safe trecking, and I should be good for Sunday's rappel experience.

    November 18, 2011

  • Doug Van E.

    OK my FINAL decision is that I AM NOT GOING. No need to get up this big hill in such a gale of a storm. Daniel and Mindy, you are of course free to go if you choose. Personally, even though I have all the gear and I have read far worse accounts of 'mountain animals' climbing 14ers in weather this bad or worse . . . I do not have anything to prove by going out in 35-40 mph winds with the threat of gusts to 85 mph. Let me know, each of you, what you decide. And, you too Hannah.

    November 17, 2011

  • daniel lee w.

    Well I have finally got most of the clothing togrther, I just need to know when the big push should occur. I have really been training my positive attitude on this one and really look forward to it. But I also want make it there and back ok. If we go on saturday por sunday regardless I would really appreciate a ride. Just post a note to me. otherwise lets get'er done!

    November 17, 2011

  • Doug Van E.

    Hello Daniel & Mindy,

    Daniel please call me &/or give me your phone #. I can pick you up about 4:30 AM on Saturday. Mindy, please plan to meet us in the City Market parking lot a few minutes before 5 AM. Mindy what is your ph # too, please. Here is a link to the City Market location.

    November 17, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    Wed night NOAA update: Saturday: Snow likely. Cloudy and windy, with a high near 18. Chance of precipitation is 70%.
    Kind of hard to get enthused. Getting caught in bad weather is one thing. Venturing out into it is another. I am going to keep tracking this and make a decision tomorrow (or maybe Friday), but I will await better weather.

    November 16, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    NOAA peak-specific weather forecast from (a great site!)

    November 13, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    Per Google maps, Hoosier Pass is 2 hours away. A 6am departure from Denver sounds tolerable, but would be willing to camp out; just need to ensure i have adequate gear to stay warm.

    November 13, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    I have not hiked a 14 'er but would really like to do this one! I have two sets of snowshoes if someone needs to borrow a pair!

    November 13, 2011

  • Hannah

    I plan on attending, driving in from Denver. Anybody else want to carpool? I am also thiking of car-camping near trailhead to avoid the early morning drive.

    November 9, 2011

  • Doug Van E.

    Being new to Colorado I do not know a lot of the resources yet so I am not sure how to learn about the snow on Quandary. I plan to take snowshoes, trekking/ ski poles (with large snow baskets) and Kahtoola MicroSpikes. All that will be with a warm pair of boots and knee-high gaiters. There are a couple of 14'er web sites that I find by googling for general info. One or the other may have snow conditions reports.

    November 7, 2011

  • daniel lee w.

    hey I would be more than happy to chip in for gas for a ride to a chance to do a 14'er! are snow packs ok or should I get snow shoes?

    November 6, 2011


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