Peak:  James Peak (13er)
 Route:  St Mary\\\'s Glacier TH
 Range:  Front
 Posted By:  headsizeburrito
 Date of Info:  12/07/2021
 Date Posted:  12/07/2021

Drove up on Sunday, turned around due to wildfire in Idaho Springs (luckily ended up being small and contained), came back today to try again. First time getting beyond my local trails in a few months and first time on show since last season so a good shakeout.

Lots of ice from the TH to shortly above the lake, traction strongly recommended. Once you leave the gully and it starts to level out there is a fair bit of bare ground and patchy snow. More accumulation once you start up the east slope, maybe 6-8" max with plenty of exposed rock. Trail sometimes visible, sometimes not, but large cairns help. I took a direct line up and then roughly followed the trail on the way down. Kept my spikes on all day but could manage without them other than the icy sections down low.

Had vague plans to continue to Parry and Eva if I was feeling good, but wind conditions sucked. Rarely more than 100-200yds visibility with occasional near whiteout from stronger gusts so it didn't seem worth the effort. Will have to come back another time to actually see all those lakes south of James!

1) Ice on the way up from the TH
2) Nice conditions at the lake at least
3) Into the weather around 11,600
4) James east slope around 12,000
5) James summit (allegedly per GPS!)

Light snow in the forecast for the next couple days, so things could change soon but probably not dramatically.

Photos (click for slideshow):

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