James Peak  
Condition Updates  
Route: From St Mary\'s Glacier TH
Posted On: 2018-05-10, By: grahampa
Info: James Peak is in prime form for skiing, if you're willing to go through the woods for a while. An early start would be helpful below treeline. Skiing down from the peak around 3 pm was amazing, perfect conditions for skiing. No wonder it is a classic ski descent! 
Route: St. Marys to SE Slope
Posted On: 2018-04-25, By: cardgenius
Info: Lots of new snow and really good coverage the whole way, especially in the large field after the “glacier”. Didn't take skis off at all. Be ready for all snow conditions. Powder, wind packed powder, wind blown hard pack, sastrugi. Warmed up really fast as the wind died down and you could tell it was affecting the snow. Quite sticky in some spots! 
4 3
Route: SE Slopes
Posted On: 2018-04-05, By: summit21
Info: Made it up to the shoulder yesterday (12,700ft) before I was turned around by 50-70mph wind gusts. Variable snow from supportive,breakable crust to powder 2-4in deep. The tundra as previous poster stated is wind blown/icy and thin in spots. Was able to make to rocky landmark on descent thanks to the wind on snowboard. SM glacier is also wind blown hard packed/icy. 
1
Route: St Marys Glacier/SE slopes
Posted On: 2018-03-19, By: AlexeyD
Info: Was able to skin up and ski down from base to summit without removing skis except for a few feet near the usual rocky part near the lake. Variable snow conditions, generally wind-packed and supportive on the glacier and deep, dense powder on the upper SE slopes. Snow on the tundra is thin and icy in parts as expected, but I was able to make it across with only a couple of small scrapes. Upper mountain had very fun skiing conditions for the descent. I broke trail for much of the way, but unfortunately the winds on this mountain are so strong that any skin track gets covered up almost immediately, so my efforts won't be of much use to anyone. 
4 2
Route: South Boulder Creek
Posted On: 2017-12-17, By: jrobie23
Info: Snowshoes strongly recommended after Forest Lakes TH. Some nice work by someone to clear 2 large trees. Some post-holing (w/ snowshoes on) for the last mile or so. Past Heart Lake, crampons would be really nice for peace of mind. A little too firm styrofoam to keep going much past the first switchback w/ snowshoes. 
Route: Sait Marys route
Posted On: 2017-11-11, By: Lando_cal007
Info: It was snowy above tree line and the wind was somthing else summit was easy though. I used micro spickes and trekking poles. 
Route: Southeast slope
Posted On: 2017-10-08, By: Sglm14
Info: Brought my microspikes but did not use them. 
1
Route: Moffat Tunnel (East Portal)
Posted On: 2017-09-30, By: jrobie23
Info: It is going to be a little slick (early) after about a mile in. it was slushy this afternoon, so an overnight freeze will make it slick. we went to Roger's pass and started towards the section behind that nice knife-edge on your left, but it was 8 - 12" of snow. Just need snowshoes to continue past there. Temps were amazing but didn't have the footwear. 
Route: St Mary\'s
Posted On: 2017-07-08, By: soccern23ny
Info: The only snow is at the "glacier". Half of it can be avoided by a trail on the right hand side of glacier. At this point the snow field is not as steep and no traction or ice ax is needed. 
Route: St Mary\'s Glacier
Posted On: 2017-07-01, By: MC.Ikema
Info: A few small patches of snow on route, but they won't be around for long. Traction not needed (no one on route used traction). Have at it! 
Route: Superstar
Posted On: 2017-06-29, By: rousik
Info: Started 6:20, topped in ~1h10mins later. The snow was good and firm all the way to the top. Cornice was pretty much entirely gone and we were able to top out through the gap and did not have to climb any rock. Just below the exit there was not much snow left - it will be probably all melted out by now. 
Route: St Marys Glacier
Posted On: 2017-06-11, By: Alpine Guy
Info: went up yesterday with my dog, starting around 7am. The snow was almost firm but some patches of softer snow and I punched through a few times up to my waist, but never for more than a step or two. Once I got to James and the slope got steeper you could kick steps a full boot deep. Saw two climbers on Superstar(?) trying to pass the very large cornice at the top but I think they had to turn around (got a couple of crappy iphone photos if you read this). Plunge-stepped almost all the way from the summit back to the dirt on Jamaica flats - that was fun. Not quite firm or steep enough to glissade. There was some deep wallowing back down at the base of James (even my dog had some issues) but hey it kinda felt good to cool off. I would say a little over half, maybe even 2/3 of the trip is on snow and 90% of that is good to go w/o flotation. I found microspikes to be comfortable if not necessary. Everyone who didn't have gaiters wished they did. Definitely appreciated having ski poles. Oh yeah, the wind was 30-60mph the whole way up - don't forget a headband or earplugs. 
Route: Shooting Star
Posted On: 2017-06-09, By: gmarc
Info: Was a little worried about the warm temps, but decided to go for the couloir this morning. The snow up St. Mary's was super firm. Small, intermittent snowfields from the top of the "glacier" to the base of the couloirs, no flotation necessary. I started up the couloir about 6:30am, things were starting to soften up and I enjoyed a bit of post-holing down low on the apron. Shooting Star and Superstar are both in great condition still. There is a pretty large cornice hanging at the top of Superstar though, so be wary if you chose that route. There are some runnels going down both, and a little bit of rockfall was coming down shooting star, but everything was manageable. The snow was a bit sub-optimal on the way up, a little soft and slushy, but easy to kick steps. Looks like another freeze should be coming in a couple days so that should help. I just had one straight mountaineering axe and felt comfortable the whole time, but others may prefer two tools. It gets steep! Glissade off the summit and a couple plunge steps down St. Mary's puts you back at the trailhead in no time! Great to split kicking steps with Peter (?) and watch James (?) drop the couloir. Nice to meet you guys! 
3 1
Route: St Mary\'s Glacier
Posted On: 2017-05-08, By: IHikeLikeAGirl
Info: Very warm day. By 10a snow was too wet to get in much of a glissade or self arrest. practice. Swapped between microspikes and snowshoes a few times. Still quite a bit of snow, but did not see a continuous line of snow between the glacier and the summit of James Pk for skiers/boarders, but could be wrong. 
Route: St. Mary\\\'s Glacier
Posted On: 2017-04-11, By: aislinnmcl
Info: Sunny bluebird day. Dealt with 40mph gusts around 7:30am up St. Mary's Glacier but the wind died almost completely after we were halfway across the tundra. Snowshoes are still a great idea and the snow is skiable once it softens up mid-morning. 
2
Route: Mary\'s Glacier
Posted On: 2017-04-07, By: madadraw1
Info: Continuous snow from TH to summit, except for one short stretch I carried my skis. No biggie. 
Route: SE SLOPES
Posted On: 2017-02-12, By: dolfh
Info: The trail from parking lot to glacier is hardpacked. The glacier is windblasted. Slope angle around 20 degrees. The route up to the summit of James Peak is dry in many areas. The snow slopes do not require floatation. High winds with intermittent whiteouts during the morning. A large boulder pile west of the top of the glacier provides a useful landmark on the descent. 
Route: St Mary Glacier
Posted On: 2017-02-03, By: blainerblainer
Info: Hiked up skis to top of St Mary's Glacier, after that there was not enough snow to ski down, so we left skis and continued on to summit. Windy but warm temps made for an excellent day. Skiing started out with bad snow at top of Glacier, but got progressively better the closer to the trailhead. 
Route: Rogers Pass Route
Posted On: 2016-07-05, By: hberry
Info: A few small snow areas to cross that do not require any traction, sneakers are fine. Rollins pass is in decent shape, saw a few passenger cars at the trailhead but is slow going for a lower clearance vehicle. 
Route: St. Mary's Glacier / standard route
Posted On: 2016-06-25, By: LarryM
Info: Snow free except for two short, easily avoidable sections, and of course the glacier. 

Return to the main Peak Conditions page
© 2022 14ers.com®, 14ers Inc.