Pacific Peak  
Condition Updates  
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2022-08-02, By: csf-lhiver
Info: Started hiking from 4WD TH at 5:34AM. Rain the night before made for a cautious ascent of the west ridge. Hanging ridge direct the rock was dry for the most part, some sections I chose to not go direct and hang around on easier terrain because of potential slick spots, gullies were loose but went slow and hung to the walls. Bring an extra pair of socks or rain/mud shoe covers... the willows will take you for a muddy spin to and from the peak. 
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2022-07-31, By: Laxer04
Info: Started at Mayflower Gulch TH. Took the west ridge up Pacific and then traversed over to Atlantic, down the west ridge of Atlantic back to the car. Trip was around 8 miles 3400 ft of vert. The route is entirely free of snow. The stream crossing near the cabins in Mayflower Gulch is a muddy mess - I was glad I had my high top waterproof boots on. My climbing partner's trail runners got completely soaked and coated in mud on both the ascent and descent. I found the west ridge up Pacific very enjoyable. Fun climbing on solid rock. The rock was a bit slick due to all the recent moisture, which slowed us down a bit. I made the mistake of trying to drop down to the right to avoid one move and it was all terrible loose rock and scree. Bad idea. 
Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2022-07-11, By: MTBen
Info: Started at lower McCullough Gulch TH. No snow on the ridge. Ridge coming off the summit has some snow but it is avoidable. Route down the southeast slopes still has snow in the headwall so be prepared to downclimb or glissade it. minimal snow to worry about past this section. 
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2022-07-02, By: pbergmaier
Info: Did Pacific and Crystal from lower Mayflower Gulch TH, by the highway. Started at 5:45am and reached summit of Pacific at 9am. As previously stated, all snow fields going up Pacific's west ridge are avoidable if so desired. The traverse from Pacific to Crystal is dry as well and all snow fields can also be avoided. We descended west from the Pacific-Crystal saddle and contoured back to the bottom of Pacific's west ridge. Here you will probably need to cross several low-angle snow fields if you want to take the easiest and most direct route. On the ascent, we crossed Mayflower Creek very early, via the concrete flow control system just 0.1 miles from the lower TH, and bushwhacked our way up to the Pacific Creek drainage. On the descent, we instead opted to follow the established trail back down across Mayflower Creek to the old cabin remains at the upper TH. This latter creek crossing was a sloppy, muddy mess and we recommend avoiding it for at least the next couple weeks until it dries up a bit. 
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2022-06-19, By: benopp
Info: Pacific West Ridge can be done clear of snow (though there are snow fields on the approach) although ridge holds snow, these can be pretty easily bypassed on the south side. The last, most upper snow field does not cover the ridge. Pacific to Atlantic is completely clear, except for some maneuvering around coming off Pacific. Atlantic ridge has some snow spots, but they can be avoided pretty easily. 
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2022-06-11, By: rivrrapids
Info: Did Pacific, Crystal, and Atlantic. Ascended Mayflower Hill to gain P's west ridge. P's west ridge has some snow, used axe briefly but not absolutely necessary. P>C is dry, P>A has snow on A's ascent but can be avoided. A's west ridge has snow but was not consolidated but alot can be avoided. P's north couloir appears to still be in but not sure of snow quality and may have some rock now; looks like cornice has fallen/dissipated since last report of 5/15. 
Route: North couloir
Posted On: 2022-05-16, By: SnowAlien
Info: Started @6.30 from 2wd Spruce Creek TH, thinking the North couloir will need to warm up for skiing. Turns out the bottom 2/3 is east facing, so I was almost late - started on the apron @10.20. Bootpen was mid-calf. After the bend, the top part was still cold, shady and icy. Cornices were shedding small chunks almost continuously, and saw one big rock come down. Great climb though, one of the steepest couloirs in the state, gets to 55-60 degrees near the top. Got to the summit around 12pm. The ridge below summit is dry, skied one of the Hawaiian couloirs (some debris in the lower half). Only summit was a bit windy, the rest was windless. Continued on to Crystal. 
Route: Southeast Slopes
Posted On: 2022-05-14, By: zinj
Info: McCullough Gulch road is closed. But what snow remains (15% in the morning, more like 10% four hours later) would be easily crossed in even the most feeble AWD vehicle if the road were open. It's a top-quality dirt road. Once on trail after the long road walk, the day goes sideways pretty quickly. Lost the trail after the first mining hut and post-holed so frequently that I just started ascending to get above the trees and seek out colder/ harder melt/freeze snow and rock. That kind of worked…there was better support of my 200lb body on fully exposed snowfields than in the forest. But the support didn't last long as the snowfields started giving way too - especially along the edges as you'd expect. Took forever to get to 11,800. Sat down and considered some of my poor life choices, and decided I didn't want to endure same fight on the descent (but worse with warming) AFTER being further exhausted by slogging up Pacific and Atlantic, WHICH I would anticipate are a whole lot better than the Gulch. Bailed. And the descent WAS worse. Even when I finally found the trail. Poles useful. Gaiters ESSENTIAL. Never touched axe or crampons that I had with me. Flotation might have helped in some places Snow is melting fast. Once the hip-high drifts in the forest melt down a bit, McCullough Guch will become serviceable. Several of those post-holes have my blood on the edge or adjacent as I struggled to extricate myself. But I'm out and off, so don't call it in to the authorities. Or something. 
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2021-10-24, By: NittanyLion14er
Info: West ridge mostly snow free, easy to avoid few spots, summit dry. Ridge to Atlantic dry to low point, then snow up to Atlantic summit. 
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2021-09-09, By: cougar
Info: Willows are very wet and muddy with no good way through them, although staying on top of the lower ones seems to work best, better than going through gaps. Both Atlantic and Pacific ridges in summer conditions. Gulch is popular but the peaks were quiet. 
Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2021-08-14, By: Thevirtualsherpa
Info: I know its summer and PCRs aren't as important but wanted to make a note about this route. Ridge itself is great but the southeast pacific peak route is not very fun. The descent from the saddle is very dangerous - the entire ground is loose and very steep. Wouldn't recommend this descent. Much much better with snow coverage I'd imagine. 
Route: Up East Slopes, Down North Ridge
Posted On: 2021-07-30, By: PikaSteve
Info: A few small avoidable snowfields remain in the steep gully connecting Mohawk Lakes and Pacific Tarn. In the steepest part of the gully, I angled up the rocks just below and right of the rightmost snowfield in the photo. One lengthy set of stepping stones is needed to cross the creek below the fifth of six lakes. Nice loop hike with fine weather until mid-afternoon: parked on Spruce Creek 4WD Road at intersection with Aqueduct Road; up Pacific Peak via Mohawk Lakes; down to saddle and up to Crystal Peak; down Northeast Ridge to Crystal Lakes; and return to truck via Wheeler Trail. Glad I did Pacific Peak first as the hardest parts of the day were all finished first: steep gully ascent to Pacific Tarn plateau; final summit ascent on loose, blocky talus; transfer to subsummit; descent of North Ridge to saddle on steeper, looser, blockier talus. 
8 1
Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2021-07-11, By: MC.Ikema
Info: East Ridge is snow free to the top. Group coming up the West Ridge reported (very small) snow as avoidable. Southeast slope still has a snowfield at 13,000, but there's a nearly melted out path through on climber's right (ascending). 
Route: East Ridge
Posted On: 2021-06-21, By: Dan_Suitor
Info: Snow was avoidable the entire route. If you want to return via Atlantic's Northeast Slopes, please look at my condition report for Atlantic as it is not snow free. 
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2021-06-20, By: ktfoote628
Info: Beautiful, slightly windy morning on Pacific Pk. Traversed over from Atlantic which was dry. Mostly avoidable snow on Pacific... slightly low angle crossing on the summit itself. The sketchy "snow knife edge" that someone posted about last weekend is still there (maybe a 1/4 way down the ridge) but we followed footsteps and it felt stable, although we could not see the rocks/ ridge underneath. See attached. The descent had some snow fields but avoidable if you stay ridge proper. It was easy to find the path through the willows but definitely sunk past ankle deep despite my best attempts at navigation. 
3 1
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2021-06-14, By: -wren-
Info: If you're looking for a scramble near Denver in summer condition this is it right here. Only one patch of snow that must be crossed which does not require microspikes. However, I made 2-3 class 4 moves to avoid class 3 covered in snow at one point. 
2 6
Route: North Col
Posted On: 2021-06-10, By: blazintoes
Info: Parked at Spruce Ck. Biked to Mohawk Lakes TH. By 0200 started hiking and found the upper tarns difficult to navigate d/t softening snow. Made it to the Col later than I wanted but it's only 800' vertical so blasted up and the Col conditions felt like over ripened avocado mush. Kinda scary. Topped out at noon and it was very warm. Too chicken to glissade so screed down the northeast face and posthole hell back to the waterfall. This years snowpack is the most difficult I've experienced and hard to predict what's good. With as warm as it's been I'd say couloir season is over. Kinda lame. Sorry for late post. 
14 2
Route: Via Atlantic
Posted On: 2021-01-27, By: Sbenfield
Info: Up Atlantic first via West Ridge then over to Pacific & back. We used Snowshoes to gain Atlantic's ridge & were careful to stick by low angled tree areas until the ridge. We were happy to have axe & crampons after b/c of one or two tricky spots along the ridge. Route over to Pacific was pretty nice! Re summited Atlantic on the way down. Great day! 
6 2
Route: East Slopes
Posted On: 2020-10-06, By: Mojokram17
Info: A friend and I climbed up to Pacific Tarn today (had no interest in summiting honestly, just wanted to say we did the highest lake in the US) and we used this route as our guide for the most part. Everything up through Mohawk lakes to the end of the numbered lakes (I believe there are 7 lakes past Upper Mohawk, not sure) is class 1. The crux of the route is decently steep, but it is crazy loose. There were maybe 50 yards of snow towards the top of the gully clinging to the steepest parts, but all snow was avoidable and there was a decent route through the gully up to where the slope eases. We ended up going up a small chimney of more stable rock about 2/3 of the way up the gully because of how loose it was. Definitely be prepared for a high class 2/low class 3 climb up some nasty talus/scree for around 800 feet. Class 3 can be avoided but honestly it felt much nicer to go up a class 3 chimney than the class 2 talus/scree. Great views and a solid climb. 
Route: West Ridge
Posted On: 2020-10-04, By: MountainBuhn
Info: Extremely fun route but far more loose than we were expecting. Some of the chimney cruxes were really loose. Really make sure to check your holds before make any move. Crazy exposure as well, but luckily the highly exposed “knife-edges” were a bit more solid. Long, strenuous 1,000 feet of straight class 3. Only a few areas where it relented. Way down Atlantic was loose, but low class 2. 

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