Snowmass Mountain  
Condition Updates  
Route: West Slope
Posted On: 2022-07-25, By: downishardest
Info: 4wd road was easily passable in my UTV. Saw a few pickup trucks and some jeeps that made it up. There is no snow at all in the main gully for the West slopes route. 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-07-17, By: kmaha
Info: Summited Snowmass yesterday - 16 July. All snow is easily avoidable. There's one large patch of snow heading up to the “bump,” however, you can easily boulder hop to the left of it to bypass. The log jam is in good condition and easy to cross. The willows around the lake are pretty miserable. After the recent rain, you're either trying to not get smacked in the face by branches, or slip on slick mud and roots. The scree slope is really loose in spots, again due to recent rains. The gully is fairly easy to cross, but the rock is slippery. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-07-10, By: trkl9
Info: The snowmass has really melted out. I brought an axe and crampons but didn't even pull out the crampons. I used the axe because I had it but you could probably get away with one/two trekking poles. What snow there is felt supportive but you could probably find a way to rock hop if you want most of the way up. 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-07-05, By: samfarmer789
Info: Snowmass in great condition. We had on the gps 8.5mi to the lake and then 3.5mi from the lake to the summit. Log jam in good condition, easily crossable. Not very much snow in the gully but still would definitely bring spikes & ice axe. Glissaded down the snow after summitting. Cairns along the summit ridge/just below summit ridge are pretty easy to find. Took us a while to go from lake to summit- over 5 hours for 3.5 miles! We we were slow going while decided if we should bail due to clouds coming in- glad we didn't though as we had a perfect bluebird summit! 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-07-01, By: pjcolorado
Info: Thanks tremendously to the folks who recently posted. I was as ready as I could be for that slog up the mountain. I went door-to-door in 21 hours. Crossing the logjam in the dark was not a lot of fun. The first way I chose was not the right way. I came back to shore and found the right way across. Everything was fine until I got to the snowmass. The snow is melting and you can hear it everywhere. You never know when it will try to swallow you up. Crampons are the equipment of the day if you hope to negotiate the snowmass. I met a couple who had departed their campsite at the lake at 2 a.m. who could not get to the notch on just micro spikes. And that stream/waterfall by the scree field? First thing in the morning it was an easy cross. Coming back across in the afternoon after the sun had melted the mountain, it turned into a raging beast! I managed to find a way across, but I might have gotten a little wet doing it. That scree field is not a picnic after you've summited and are on your way back down on tired legs. The rest of the hike was fine and I was back at my car just after 10 p.m., happy to have this one in the books. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-29, By: psa954hiker
Info: I climbed North Maroon 6/28 and took this photo of Snowmass Mtn east slopes for those thinking to take that route. Capitol Peak is also hanging onto some snow. 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-29, By: NickSkisGood
Info: what a hike! did all 22 miles in one day push starting at 12:45am finishing just before dusk. Made it extra challenging by lugging skis up there, though the ski descent on the snowmass was totally worth it! Be careful route finding on the last ridge. Super fun! Check out our youtube video of the hike/ ski: 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-26, By: jeffh7
Info: Now is the time to do Snowmass! We backpacked in and split the hike into two days and felt that it was a way more enjoyable way to experience this mountain. Everything is super green and lush right now with plenty of wildflowers. Agree with other report, turn right asap when you get to the logjam for an easier crossing. We were at the logjam in the daytime and still managed to miss the turn initially and backtracked. Crossing it during the day isn't too bad. Two of us did it easily without poles and one used poles. The willows/trail around the lake isn't too bad if you actually stay on trail. We left the lake at 2am in the dark (stars were unbelievable) and one of the snow drifts covered a crucial turn we missed which resulted in us bushwhacking a good half of the willows which sucked. On the way back we stayed on trail the entire time but there were still plenty spots that were covered by drifts. It should be pretty easy to follow footsteps now though. The loose rock/dirt before the snow was easily the worst and most dangerous part of the hike. We did the entire thing with just headlamp light and got into a few parts with minimal rock traction and just pure loose dirt right above a "no-fall" zone where you'd tumble pretty far. This was right next to the waterfall. Descending we stayed pretty much on/in the waterfall and it was a little better, but still very unenjoyable during the steepest part. Once we made it to the snowmass we put on crampons and brought out our iceax. Iceax + 1 pole combo was great for ascending. I definitely felt more comfortable with crampons, but it would be possible with spikes but maybe a little sketch depending on your line. We were doing most of the ascent in the dark so the snow was nice and hard for our traction devices. When descending we were able to glissade the entirety of the snow and our ice ax was great for stopping us quickly. The glissade was super fun and never felt dangerous at any point with an ax. We were descending around 8 AM and the snow was already softening and getting a little wet on the top but still firm below. When we got to the ridgeline we stashed snow equipment and scrambled to the summit. We were doing this portion during the sunrise which was incredibly pretty. We mainly tried to stay ridge proper which brought us to some really fun class 3/low 4 climbing. You could make it easier on yourself by staying low. We reached summit around 6:15 AM, thus resulting in about a 4 hour ascent from the lake. Side note: U.S. Forest Service was at the lake clearing logs off of the trail. Make sure you sign and bring the form at the trailhead if you are camping overnight as well as bring a bear canister & bathroom equipment. They checked to make sure we had all when we talked to them. Also make sure to thank them for what they do All in all, my favorite 14er thus far and one of my most memorable trips in the mountains. Feel free to ask me any extra info. Now is your chance to go for this mountain before the snow really starts to melt. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-26, By: bethany420
Info: this is a crazy hard day hike but definitely doable. started at midnight and got back to the car at 8:36pm. us and another group started the log jam in the wrong spot and had to back track a little to find the right spot to cross. its hard to see in the dark but there is a sharp right turn to the entrance of the log jam when the trail appears to go straight. if you go straight you will end up crossing a much bigger log jam where you will definitely get wet if you dont turn around at a certain point. there are lots of willows in this area so you cant really see the log jam from the trail. but once you find it just go slow and its not that bad. the “snow drifts” around the lake are not a big deal anymore, we didn't post hole. its more like patches of slushy snow now. its muddy between the patches and lots of overgrown willows in this area too. the loose stuff before the mass was dry and horrible. at one point on the way up i hugged the edge of the waterfall with snow over it so i could use my ice axe for more support getting up the loose dirt. the mass is a little slushy with some icy spots and pretty sketchy but we also didn't summit til noon. definitely use crampons right now with an axe. once you are past the snowmass its all dry where you cross over to the other side and all the way to the summit. on the way down we put crampons back on to walk across the mass to the point where it was safe to glissade. after the mass some guys said they found an easier way down on the other side of the waterfall but it resulted in having to cross the waterfall to get back on trail which was sketchy. go now before its all loose 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-23, By: ReggieBop
Info: Took my day off this week to scamper down to snowmass - the approach to the lake is stunning right now. Log jam is totally fine, not a problem. The rock scree is as joyous as scree can be. The snow approach to the notch is not awesome, I wore microspikes but crampons would have been better. Mountain axe was a great tool to have. Ice axes not necessary. The notch has a cornice, I bypassed in on the right, hugging the rock, but I punched through the snow, and my feet were "dangling" down for a second, as the snow gave way under my feet- my axe was firmly gripping the snow, thank goodness. Due to the deteriorating snow, take caution if doing this modification to the Easy Slopes route. Gorgeous views from the summit. Car to summit to car in a few hours, fun day! 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-22, By: logan18er
Info: Summited Snowmass on the solstice. Conditions were pretty similar to previous reports. The logjam was no big deal, as long as you have hiking poles- no need to get your feet wet if you don't want to. Plenty of dry camp spots by the lake outlet, but there was still significant (and annoying) snowdrifts around the lake, although they're melting fast. The scree slope is dry (and a pain). Conditions on the Snowmass were excellent- it didn't feel like there was any danger of postholing (or avalanches), but it was soft enough to glissade down. Ice axe is mandatory. My Dad and I had no trouble getting up using just spikes, but another party with crampons seemed to have an easier time. Go and do Snowmass now, before the snow melts! 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-17, By: JBORDEN1503
Info: Logjam is totally good. Snow around the lake makes the going a little bit slower. Overall conditions very similar to the previous report. The traverse was mostly clear and all snow can be avoided on the traverse. In our group I had crampons while my partner had micro spikes. While we both made it just fine we agreed that crampons would still be the smart choice, and an ice axe is definitely required. We also found hiking poles very helpful on the snowfield and logjam. 16 hours car to car for our group, although we heard others say it took longer. 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-12, By: Christensenje
Info: Logjam continues to improve and we/many other groups seemed to pass it just fine. Brought chacos, hiking poles, and good balance. Feet barely got wet. Some snow on the trail around the lake. Was able to follow footsteps before us and barely postholed. But a second pair of socks isn't a bad idea if shoe aren't completely waterproof. The scree slope is pretty dry. Above the scree slope, snow was awesome to walk on top of. Only brought hiking poles and micro spikes. Someone who wants more security could bring crampons but we didn't feel like it was mandatory. From the ridge, very few snow patches to work around. Made a few sections a little more than what they would be than if dry but thought it was fine and not a big issue if your comfortable in that terrain. Glissaded/shoe ski'd back down to the screw slope. An ice axe was nice to have for this part. 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-10, By: JROSKA
Info: We planned a Saturday summit but did not make it due to issues with the logjam. I won't describe it as “impassible” because while we were mulling it over we did observe two parties cross it. They both got wet and so while it is possible, the only way is to spend some time in the water. Can't stay on the logs. Water shoes are a must. The current is really strong now and if you went in the water in an unexpected way in all those logs in water that cold you could have a problem. The ford crossing 150 feet downstream (or any other option) didn't seem viable for us. Again the current is too strong. Today, the logjam was the only option but we viewed it as a bad one so we turned back. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-13, By: danpayne17
Info: Hiked up to the lake the evening of the 5th. Patchy snow starting about halfway up. Followed the boot pack so didn't put on gaiters or snow shoes, although I had both. The logjam was passable, but barely. I took off my boots and socks and rolled up my pant legs. I was able to navigate about the first 80% of the logjam without getting wet, but the last part I had to dip into the water. Extremely cold water! All told it took me about 7 hours to make it to the lake. The downed trees, logjam, snow patches and my heavy pack slowed me down. Camped at the lake along with a couple other teams. Started my climb the next morning at 2:15am. Snow conditions were perfect. Followed a boot pack trail around the lake. Put my crampons on at the base of the gulley. Crampons and ice axe required in my opinion. The ascent from here is steep and continuous snow until the ridge. Once near the ridge line, I took the standard route. Due to the way the snow had accumulated on it, it was extremely steep. I actually descended the direct route as it was less steep. The ridge itself is mostly clear of snow. I left my crampons on for the traverse. Spent about 30 minutes on the summit and then for descent, went the direct route. It has a small cornice on top of the notch, but this is easily avoidable by going climbers right of the cornice. There's a slot to get onto the ridge line from there. Anyway, for my descent, I glissaded down the direct route all the way to the lake. Absolutely fabulous glissade! By now the sun was out and getting back around the lake was a slog. I'd stashed snow shoes at the base of the gulley for the return but wasn't able to locate them. If you find a pair of snowshoes, please DM me. I'd love to get them back. All told from the lake it took me 10.5 hours RT including 30 minutes on the summit. Great day for a climb with perfect weather and excellent conditions. On the hike back to the TH, the logjam had changed and was able to cross it without taking my boots off or getting wet. Be sure to bring hiking poles or find a walking stick or two to help you get across it. 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-06, By: ltwagner
Info: Planned an overnight trip at Snowmass lake and had planned to summit today (6/6). As mentioned in previous posts, the logjam is just not a safe option right now. We chose to cross about 100 ft downstream (photo attached, pointing to where we crossed) and the water was about knee deep. Poles and water shoes are a must. The trail after the logjam, towards the lake is in bad condition. Lots of fallen down trees and large snow piles. I'm 5'5 and would posthole past my knee. The last mile before the lake is predominantly these snow piles (photo attached). Good water proof boots are a must and gaiters may be helpful. Camped at Snowmass Lake. Lake is mostly frozen. Only enough room for about 3 tents (photo attached). We decided not to summit the next morning because the weather was not ideal, was worn out from the previous day of postholing and had other hikers described less than ideal snow conditions on the mass. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-05, By: jfm3
Info: I attempted a 1-day climb of Snowmass today. I left the trailhead at 12:45 AM and turned around at the logjam. The logjam cannot be crossed without at least 2 steps in the water. Snowmass Creek is an absolute torrent right now and the pond is several feet deep. Most of the logs are not anchored in place but are just floating in the water. Many of them would move several inches up and down when I stepped on them. I tried to cross 2 different places and couldn't do it. I also looked downstream and didn't see anything. I was at the logjam at ~3:30 AM and in the dark I was unable to assess the fording location of the previous condition update- the water was smooth and flowing and I couldn't tell how deep it was. I recommend wading/fording at this spot instead of trying to cross the logs. I might try again next weekend with some water shoes. The water level in the pond needs to drop several inches to expose enough logs to allow a dry crossing. 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-06-05, By: 14ercooper
Info: Easy hiking up to the log jam. Attempting to cross the log jam itself was pretty sketchy - wound up taking a dive into the water by mistake because a big part of the jam decided to break free - I found fording the river about 100-150ft downstream was much easier on the way back. A fair bit of snow once you get into the trees near the lake, and pretty continuous snow from the far side of the lake up to the ridgeline - either hang more left on the standard route or be prepared to deal with some cornices to gain the ridge (though the notch variation is traversible, there was still a fairly problematic cornice for me). Still had some great snow conditions for hiking/climbing. 
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Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-05-29, By: Wigwam5
Info: Snow was dirty, but stable on the way up in the basin after the couloir. Getting to the ridge required climbing on a cracked and steep snow face. Ridge was still mixed climbing, but do not need crampons at this point. Most of the couloirs on the way down were corniced, but I was able to drop in one and ride down on the splitboard. Another group decided it was easier to head north from where we accessed the ridge to where I had droped in. Great riding down to the lake. Did see a slide on the south aspect, but nothing too concering around the peak. 
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2022-05-29, By: bsiegs
Info: Climbed 5/28 with Alpinefroggy, who recently posted a great conditions report. I'll add a few more details and photos here - - Started towards the direct route to the ridge, but the cornice was still there. Instead, I gained the ridge midway between standard and direct routes. Once on the ridge, it's essentially all rock to the summit. - Coming back I opted to stay on the ridge longer and descend the standard route. The initial ~150 ft off the ridge was quite steep, but once the angle eased a bit, I had an awesome series of glissades from ~13.5k to ~12.2k. - Visible evidence of previous wet-slide activity, and I was very happy with the 2am start choice. Summited at 7am and was back to the lake at 10:45. Snow was already softening as I was making my way down. Awesome climb overall - mountain is in great shape! 
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