Fletcher Mountain  
Condition Updates  
Route: Fletcher+Drift Traverse
Posted On: 2022-07-10, By: NittanyLion14er
Info: Trail wet and muddy up to/into bowl. Above the bowl dry with very avoidable snow. 3 areas where glissades still possible, take ax, snow was soft on surface but still had some hard spots and very easy to pick up speed on steeper slopes at 7:30am. Traverse dry. 
Route: NW face
Posted On: 2022-05-27, By: jmanner
Info: Fletcher is super in on its SE face, NW face is very much not in, in good conditions. Snow was punchy in ascent on Fletcher; snow was softening up at about 11:00 am. New snow definitely needs more time to consolidate some. Don't go there, just ski it from the east- but it was also punchy at 10:40 am. 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2022-04-09, By: kimbuk2
Info: Road is clear, packed snow and some dirt. Initial plan to follow the summer route and/or stay close to the cliffs per the last report, but with a big group to try to avoid steep angled slopes, stayed to the left close to Blue Lakes to gain ridge earlier (see dark blue route on map). The slopes leading up to the ridge were windblown and firm around 7-8am but started to soften up and definitely required some post holing to get to 12,600ft. Bailed at that point due to softening snow conditions & climbing on an east facing slope (evidence of avy on a different E facing slope in the basin). Didn't need snowshoes, my group used crampons for the climb up to the ridge, and I used microspikes and 1 pole. Gear Used: La Sportiva Nepals, microspikes, extra layers for wind, trekking pole, brought ice axe and crampons but didn't need them. 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2022-03-26, By: gluckhikes
Info: Rather than following the summer route through the middle of the valley, I stayed north and kept close to the cliffs at the base of Quandary. Was able to stay on rocks here, saving time and not needing snowshoes. There were 3 or 4 short sections of steep snow to reach the summit. Used the ice axe and microspikes carefully, but crampons would have felt a lot better. 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-12-05, By: DorothyK
Info: Gorgeous, relatively wind-less day. There was some snow and microspikes were helpful. The snowpack was stable and felt like spring conditions. Glad to get one last hike in before actual winter arrives. 
Route: Fletcher+Drift Traverse
Posted On: 2021-11-27, By: halfapackofapache
Info: Parked at the quandary peak trailhead and walked up the road to blue lakes for a little extra mileage and gain. Blue lakes road is open to lower blue lake currently which puts you 1/2 mi from upper blue lake. Wore micro spikes on road as snow was packed early in the morning. Once above upper blue lake there was a healthy mix of rock hopping, hard packed snow from the wind and trap doors where the snow was very soft. Sank to my hips a couple of times. Snowshoes would be a waste of time still in my opinion, not enough consistent snow yet. The ridge between fletcher and drift was windy all day and made the rocks on the ridge very icy and slick. 
Route: TMT
Posted On: 2021-09-16, By: blazintoes
Info: Had a friend, lost a friend, too late to phone a friend but glad I was solo for this mission. I drove to the Blue Lakes TH Tuesday night to view the parking situation. The road to Blue Lakes is closed and signed that there is no parking on the road or shoulder. Although the latest condition report from Daway says it's okay to park, this area is heavily enforced. But mountain bikes are permitted. I biked up to the lake and stashed my bike then drove to Frisco. At 0400 I hiked up the east ridge of Peak 1 via Bills Ranch tr. and this is a nicely cairned and red paint marked gentle way up the peak. Concerned for time since daylight is now shorter I skipped Mt Royal and Victoria, which I've already previously climbed. Made it to the Dragon with plenty of morning sunshine and feeling great. The ridge scramble to there is a blast! Staying on the west side is key. Once at Crystal and with afternoon sun, solo, light and fast I also skipped the ridge from Atlantic to Fletcher and made it back to my bike and had a safe fantastic ride back to Frisco. Awesome beautiful autumn day and the leaves are at their peak now. Get to Dillon ASAP because with a cold front moving in next week this will probably be the last weekend to see the leaves here. Also there is no snow and no water anywhere on the ridge. I carried 2.5L and ran out on Atlantic. 
13 1
Route: Fletcher+Drift Traverse
Posted On: 2021-08-16, By: CoHi591
Info: Route up Fletcher is dry and easy to follow. Beginning of the traverse is easy to follow, I took the ridge direct and hated the down climb into the notch because I'm short, but on the way back it was an easy climb up. Beautiful fun day, though the rock is looser than I'd like. Also I'm sure this is been confirmed a dozen times over but quandary parking restrictions don't affect the upper Blue Lake trailhead. Definitely saw someone ticketing cars parked on the side of the dirt road though FYI. 
Route: Fletcher+Drift Traverse
Posted On: 2021-07-29, By: cougar
Info: Lots of water flowing on trail and muddy stretches in basin. Route avoids remaining snow. Lots of loose roller talus on Drift. Tread lightly. Didn't see anything at Blue Lakes trailhead or campsites related to Quandary reservations, just the warning sign about the west ridge. 
Route: Fletcher+Drift Traverse
Posted On: 2021-07-20, By: ScottLovesRMNP
Info: The large snowfields are entirely avoided by the cairned route. Plenty of water and moisture below 13,000. Basin above Blue Lakes is gorgeous right now -- wildflowers are at their best! 
Route: Fletcher+Drift Traverse
Posted On: 2021-07-11, By: 14er101
Info: Mostly Summer Conditions. All snow on the route avoidable using some decent route-finding skills. The headwall near 13K is still holding a lot of snow. 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-06-21, By: Scott P
Info: Bring an ice axe for the headwall starting at 13K. I was with the family in the area, but didn't bring my ice axe since the girls had no desire to do a snow climb. This was a big mistake since they ended up turning back much earlier anyway. I made an attempt on the peak anyway, but couldn't safely climb the slope above 13,000 feet with out an axe. Bring an iceaxe if you want to summit. 
Route: Fletcher+Drift Traverse
Posted On: 2021-06-20, By: Jorts
Info: I took the Blue Lakes TH to the Quandary-Fletcher saddle then on to Fletcher and over to Drift starting at 0800. Fairly snow choked across the slopes leading up to the saddle and the trail is muddy in places with high stream flow. Opted to climb up to the saddle with a piolet and strap on crampons. Firm snow made it the efficient choice. Mostly snow-free in the basin beneath Fletcher. Easy walk up Fletcher's SE ridge with little snow. The traverse to Drift was uneventful. Took the 3rd cl bypass. Didn't encounter snow or wet rock anywhere. On the way back took the low 5th direct. Also dry through there. Glissaded down from the Drift-Fletcher saddle into the upper basin and then again from the Fletcher-Quandary saddle into the lower basin. Conditions were starting to soften but it was a good pitch for a boot glissade down both. Encountered dozens of hikers on the way out along the lake. Back to the car at 11:45. 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-06-14, By: mvandergrift
Info: We were only planning on hiking up to the gulch, so started late at 8am. The trail was mostly clear of snow until 12,400' with only a few annoying drifts that could probably be avoided. The snow was surprisingly firm with some minor postholing. Lots of runoff and small streams forming. We were wearing trail runners and it wasn't too much of an issue. Snow increased around 12,400' but was still mostly avoidable by sticking to rocky terrain. There were a couple of snowy traverses that didn't require spikes. Looking at my gpx track, it looks like we did have to weave around a lot. Getting up to the ridge around 13,200' required some work. We used spikes and poles and just went straight up from one rock formation to another. There was deep postholing around the edges of the rocks where the snow was beginning to melt. This was a fun glissade on the way down, and I think it would be challenging to get down any other way right now. Once we cleared the ridge there were occasional large snowfields that could be avoided. Once you're within 100-200' of the summit, you will need to traverse some more snow. It was soft and a little slippery, but I was comfortable doing it without spikes. Even with the late start, warm temperatures and full sun the snow stayed reasonably supportive throughout the day. 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-06-11, By: vvalentin18
Info: Beautiful but windy day, snow conditions deteriorated quickly after the sun rose. Trail is basically clear until it ends at the west side of the lower basin, above that micro-spikes and ice axe were essential for some of the steeper snow slopes, for the snowy and super windy summit ridge, and for the glissades coming down. Firm snow early, super-slick coming down, minor post-holing; best to stay on the rocks as much as possible. 
8 2
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-05-09, By: graberz
Info: We were rewarded with a beautiful day and outstanding snow conditions. Road is snow free from the closure to the dam. We took snow shoes and never used them as the snow was relatively supportive all day. We did use crampons and ice axe to gain the high basins and summit, but lesser traction could probably be used per your preference and conditions. Several decent glissades. We started at 5:30 am and finished at 11 am. 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-04-30, By: durkan
Info: Redeemed myself a week later on a windless day - Went up the drainage and crested the last incline before the sun hit it (started at 05:45am, earlier would've been better in my opinion). - Postholing was minimal up to 12,300. Snowshoes were on from 12,300 to 13,500 (might not be needed, but I enjoyed the heel lift and traction on the steep climbs). - Microspikes and ice axe from 13,500 to summit at 08:20 (Crampons would've been slightly better than microspikes on the summit descent, but not necessary with an axe and downclimbing cautiously) - Once back to 13,500, I didn't use any of the above since I descended via the grassy ridge just west of the drainage and bowl. Postholing was minimal in the late morning still and back at car by 10:45am 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-04-25, By: durkan
Info: Great day, poor decisions. Did not listen to my gut and left snowshoes in the car. Poor choice as I was postholing up to my knees (more on slopes) once in the basin just above Blue Lakes. Also saw signs of what looked like wet slides and wind loaded snow above the route, but was hard to tell since I turned around. Evaluate and be cautious. Ice Axe came out above Blue Lakes. But didn't use traction all day. Brought crampons as well and I'd say they'd be needed later... just wish I had snowshoes. 
Route: Southeast Ridge
Posted On: 2021-04-25, By: Thevirtualsherpa
Info: Fletcher is in full blown winter conditions still. Blue Lakes TH closed 1.75 miles from summer access adding about 4 miles to this hike. Saw someone go for a ride in a small wind slab avi on one of the south couloirs of Quandary (not Christo). Appeared to be okay though but just a reminder that wind slabs are still very much an issue, even on south slopes. Put in a nice booter following summer route. Snow felt stable in all sections it might slide but we moved one at a time and quickly when we had to cross. Two in particular: first climb past up to the higher bowl and then the second climb to the flats before the ridge. Lots of signs of old natural slides to the south when ascending. Snowshoes 100% needed and gaiters a must. From upper bowl to ridge itself there are some MASSIVE cornices you will want to avoid. Pictures attached. Snow here was 2 inches of dust on ice. Axe and crampons necessary, especially for final 200 yards before summit where a fall would be not v fun. Beautiful day on Fletcher even with winds kicking our ass every once in a while, got the fire going for some more “spring” lines. Edit: If skiing/boarding - summit to car might be possible depending on tolerance for risk and scraping. Lots of good snow still up there, just might involve a few sections of transitioning/walking. I stashed my board above the reservoir and was able to ride basically from there to the car with one small walk to get past damn. Snow on road is melting very quickly though and even 1-3 more days might change this. 
4 1
Route: NE Face
Posted On: 2021-04-10, By: JulianSmith
Info: Climbed up to saddle between Quandary and Fletcher from McCullough Gulch, and then summited up the Southeast Ridge. Skied the couloir on the NE face that drops from the summit. Snow coverage everywhere is pretty good, as we skinned from the Quandary TH, and boot packed just a little bit up to the saddle and then up to the summit. The choke requires a little billy goating, but is doable facing either direction, without taking off your skis. 

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