Peak:  Torreys Peak (14er)
 Route:  Kelso Ridge
 Range:  Front
 Posted By:  daway8
 Date of Info:  05/14/2022
 Date Posted:  05/15/2022

Kelso Ridge is melting out really fast. Much of the route is already totally dry but some patches of snow left in shaded pockets, including a couple in the steep class 3 sections but there were good enough steps already kicked into the snow that it wasn't an issue. Much of the snow in the lower part could have probably been avoided with some slightly more difficult scrambling. Snow didn't really become continuous until all the way up at the mini Knife Edge which isn't even a knife edge at the moment. There's so much snow on either side that you can stroll right over it. Might not have even noticed it except for the white rock fin behind it. After that there were some steep snowfields to the summit. Probably wouldn't have been a bad idea to have put on some manner of traction at that point but I was too lazy and made it fine without. The snow was just barely soft enough at 11:30am for my boots to get some purchase. Noted several folks skiing down the right side (Emperor Couloir I believe) as well as ski tracks on the left (Dead Dog Couloir I believe). There were signs of some minor slides down closer to the bottom of Kelso Ridge. After going over to Grays I was able to do a 1,000+ ft glissade down into the bowl and was pleasantly surprised that the snow in the basin was firm enough to walk on with just boots at 1pm without sinking. Was not so fortunate down lower especially after following tracks that led off the main trail into the #$@&# willows!

Photos (click for slideshow):
#1) Going down to Emperor Couloir, I believe#2) Knife Edge snowed in#3) Looking over to Grays#4) Coming up Kelso Ridge#5) One of the snowy sections down lower#6) Lots of dry rock and intermittent snow down low#7) Look back at Kelso Mtn, no more avy danger since it’s so dry

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