Winter Trail Condition Report - Last 180 Days

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Hiking, climbing, and many outdoor activities can be dangerous and can result in injury. Additionally, trail conditions may change from day-to-day and even hour-to-hour. This website does not represent to the accuracy of any information contained herein. Please use the information contained on this website at your own risk and do not depend on the information contained on this website for personal safety or for determining whether to attempt any hike, climb, route or other outdoor activity.

Show past 14 days - Show past 28 days (1 month) - Show past 180 days (6 months)
Date_Hiked Trailhead Start Trailhead Elevation Trail Destinations Trail Condition Trail Information
03-18-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Devils Thumb Trail (Hessie to Diamond Lake Trail Jct)
Mostly Snow Packed Trail snow covered until wilderness boundary. Less snow in valley area. Snow shoes not required but traction devices advisable.
03-15-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Mostly Snow Packed The trails are mostly snow-packed. The road is patchy in areas.
03-15-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Mitchell Lake Trail (TH to Mitchell Lake)
Beaver Creek Trail (Beaver Creek TH to Audubon trail jct)
Mt Audubon Trail (hiked a portion of the trail)
Mt Audubon Trail (Beaver Creek Trail jct to Audubon summit)
Brainard Lake
Mt. Audbon
Mostly Snow Packed Trail conditions are great at the Brainard Lake Recreation Area. There is a lot of snow blown off the road but the trails remain snow covered. The trails up to Brainard Lake are fun and manageable for all. The hike up to Mt. Audubon was challenging but great with minimal wind today - I would only recommend this for those very experienced in winter sports.
03-14-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Waldrop (Winter Only)
St Vrain Trail - South (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered The trails around Brainard Lake are still covered in an abundant amount of snow. As is typical in mid March, warm sunny days and cold subfreezing nights have made the trails hard and icy in the morning and somewhat slushy by the afternoon.
03-14-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Diamond Lake Trail (Arapaho Pass Trail Jct to Lake)
Diamond Lake
Upper Diamond Lake
Mostly Snow Packed Good conditions to start the day from Hessie up 4th of July Road. Mid 20'sF, breezy, firm base with 2+ fresh inches and scattered snow showers. A few wind-scoured spots last mile of road required carrying skis. Conditions good for hiking too. Conditions into the wilderness changed to deeper powder with 4"+ fresh over deep base; skis or snowshoes required. Trail to Diamond Lake difficult to locate and route finding/navigation skills needed. Warming into the afternoon into the mid 40's and partly sunny, snow conditions softened. 4th of July Road out early afternoon saw an increase in bare spots and soft snow that got slower for skiers coming down and punchy for hikers. Spring conditions bringing muddy spots down low.
03-12-2020 Rainbow Lakes 10,010 Rainbow Lakes
Mostly Snow Packed The Rainbow Lakes Road from the Winter Gate to the Rainbow Lakes Campground is about 70% snow packed with 3 to 4 bare sections of road. There are numerous snow drifts on the road. Snowshoes or skis are highly recommended.
03-08-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Waldrop (Winter Only)
Mostly Snow Packed The trails are mostly snowed packed and easy to follow. A little gusty at the parking lot, road, and lake and breezy in the trees.
03-08-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Devils Thumb Trail (Hessie to Diamond Lake Trail Jct)
Devils Thumb Trail (Diamond Lake jct to Jasper Lake)
Jasper Lake
Storm Lake
Completely Snow Covered Weather conditions better than forecast. 30F at Hessie at dawn, breezy. Mostly sunny all day, temps reaching mid-40's.Trail completely snowcovered up to Jasper and Storm Lakes, but snow conditions variable and changing throughout the day. Early hours saw firm, packed trail conditions from Hessie to Wilderness boundary. By mid-morning the sun had turned conditions to wet and mushy, which only got worse throughout the day with rollerballs on south aspects. Shady sections near and above treeeline remained icy and called for crampons. Ski out lots of fun, but again variable and changing conditions.
03-08-2020 East Portal 9,211 Forest Lake (Lower)
Completely Snow Covered East Portal is completely snow covered starting at the trailhead. Trail conditions were icy in the morning. Traction devices such as skis, snow shoes or spikes recommended. Snow depth is currently excellent. Fast downhill conditions, be aware of fellow visitors.
03-07-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Jean Luning Trail
Pawnee Pass Trail (Long Lake TH to Lake Isabelle)
Long Lake
Brainard Lake
Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Waldrop (Winter Only)
Niwot Cutoff Trail (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered Trail conditions were great! Completely snow covered - there were places with hard-packed snow but also others with deeper snow. I definitely recommend traction devices if you're planning to hike any of the trails in the Brainard Lake area. If you decide to hike past Brainard Lake, I recommend traction devices stronger than microspikes such as snowshoes or skiis.
02-29-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Sourdough Trail - South (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered The snowshoe trail from the Brainard Winter Parking area to Brainard Lake is completely snow covered. It has been drifted over in spots, particularly near the lake. The Brainard Lake road is mostly snow covered with patches of ice. If you plan on walking the Brainard Lake road, traction devices are recommended.
02-24-2020 Camp Dick/Peaceful Valley 8,600 Buchanan Pass Trail (Wilderness edge to Red Deer Lake jct)
St Vrain Glacier Trail
Buchanan Pass Trail (Trail head to Wilderness Sign at Middle St. Vrain 4x4 Road)
Buchanan Pass Trail (Wilderness Sign to Wilderness Boundary)
Completely Snow Covered Great conditions and more snow on top of a good base. 2" fresh from last night at Camp Dick Winter TH with additional heavy snow starting at dawn. Sourdough trail south of forest road to Camp Dick Campground is in great shape. 4WD road up to bridge also good and received 4-6" through day, more up top. Limited visibility through the day, breezy, temperature dropping into single digits midmorning, cloudy, no sun. Travel slows up Middle St Vrain into Wilderness with deeper unbroken snow. Trail difficult to locate and navigation skills required. Needed to break trail twice, in and out, as heavy snowfall and drifting filled tracks quickly. 6-8" fresh into the wilderness. Road down from Camp Dick Campground to TH completely covered, even sections usually wind-scoured.
02-23-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Brainard Lake
Completely Snow Covered Snowshoe trail had excellent conditions with new powder today. The snow coverage on the road is thin in spots.
02-23-2020 East Portal 9,211 So Boulder Creek Trail (TH to Forest Lakes Junction jct)
Rogers Pass Trail (S Boulder Creek Trail jct to Ute Trail jct)
Completely Snow Covered The snow was fantastic! The higher you go, the better the snow! Even at the bottom, the gate you pass on the way in was sticking out of the snow about 4".
02-17-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Mitchell Lake Trail (TH to Mitchell Lake)
Mitchell Lake
Brainard Lake
Red Rock Lake
St Vrain Trail - South (Winter Only)
Sourdough Trail - North (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered Another wonderful day with lots of powder; maybe too much! Slow going breaking trail and not a lot of glide on the downhill sections with the 10" of fresh snow that was a little on the sticky side. Sticky enough that skins were not even used ascending from Sourdough to Mitchell Lake. Road and parking plowed between 06:00-07:00. Snow falling throughout moring, heavy at times, temp around 20F and moderate 15-20 mph west wind but pleasant in trees. Sourdough trail north out of Brainard Winter TH deep and good, as is S St Vrain trail west to Mitchell Lake TH. Deep base puts trail up into heavily loaded tree branches, making trail finding difficult at times. Snow bombs falling from trees. Impressive drifts on road below Mitchell Lake TH require a little extra effort to maneuver over/around . Snowfall ended around noon and the sun made an appearance. The track on Brainard road was well packed by snowshoers and skiers, and even hikers with only boots were able to negotiate it without apparent difficulty. Fresh snow completely covered road around Brainard Lake, even sections that are usually wind-scoured. Lots of smiles on President's Day
02-15-2020 Rainbow Lakes 10,010 Sourdough Trail - North (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered Sourdough Trail is completely covered in snow, mostly packed down but with deeper snow to post hole in on the banks of the trail - recommend wearing microspikes at the very least or going with snowshoes/skis.
02-09-2020 Rainbow Lakes 10,010 Sourdough Trail - South (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered I skied from the South Sourdough Trailhead to about 2 miles past the Peace Bridge. Even though it was a Sunday, there was plenty of fresh snow for everyone and even the opportunity to break tracks past the Peace Bridge. The snowfall over the past several days has left this trail in great condition. Everyone I met was smiling, even the dogs!
02-08-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Devils Thumb Bypass Trail
Lost Lake
Completely Snow Covered Departed Hessie TH at 08:00 with 18" fresh powder on trail. Road to TH freshly plowed and all parking open. Very slow going on skis in deep snow. Eldora resort was turning away riders due to capacity issues, some showed up at Hessie w/o skis or snowshoes, struggled and turned around. Nordic skis w/o skins likewise struggled and didn't get far. Snowshoes and Nordic skis with skins was the proper mode of transport in these amazing conditions. Breezy and warming. Mostly sunny, snow began to soften later in AM.
02-02-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Arapaho Pass Trail (4th of July TH to Mine site)
4th of July Mine
Mostly Snow Packed 4th of July road from Hessie TH to Wilderness boundary at 4th of July TH was packed, firm snow in early morning hours. Mostly all covered with a few bald spots near the top that required carrying skis 2-3 times for short distances. Trail passable in boots, but a traction device might be helpful in firm conditions. Trail into wilderness unbroken, deep and rotten; pretty much impassable. Return trip out on 4th of July road was fast to start but slowed as the sun began warming the surface to soft mush in late morning. Slow but still fun.
02-02-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Brainard Lake
Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered The snowshoe trail is hardpacked along its entire length. Brainard Lake was not completely frozen.
01-31-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Devils Thumb Trail (Hessie to Diamond Lake Trail Jct)
Mostly Snow Packed -
01-26-2020 Camp Dick/Peaceful Valley 8,600 Beaver Creek Trail (Coney Flats TH to Audubon trail jct)
Coney Creek Trail
Coney Lake
Upper Coney Lake
Completely Snow Covered Good ski conditions from Beaver Reservoir to Coney Flats. Good base with light powder from last recent days. Some windswept rocky areas at Coney Flats. Trail up Coney Creek is unbroken, deep in spots and wind drifted and difficult to locate trail. Very windy at Coney Lake, limited visibility.
01-24-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Brainard Lake
Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Waldrop (Winter Only)
Mostly Snow Packed Both the snowshoe trail and Waldrop trail are well packed down with snow. Snowshoes are not required although always recommended. Windy conditions today made for snow drifts and some parts of the trail were covered.
01-24-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Devils Thumb Bypass Trail
Lost Lake
Mostly Snow Packed From the Hessie trail head to Lost Lakes, the trail is mostly snow packed, although there are a few icy sections. Beyond the Lost Lake trail junction towards the Devils Thumb and the Devils Thumb Bypass trails the snow is deep and for the most untracked. Even with snow shoes, I sank up to my knees in places. If you venture this far out, you should have strong route finding skills, a map and compass, and a GPS.
01-23-2020 Camp Dick/Peaceful Valley 8,600 Beaver Creek Trail (Coney Flats TH to Audubon trail jct)
Coney Creek Trail
Coney Lake
Upper Coney Lake
Completely Snow Covered Good ski conditions from Beaver Reservoir to Coney Flats. Good base with 2" powder from last 24 hours and another 2" during day. Some windswept rocky areas at Coney Flats. Trail up Coney Creek is unbroken, deep in spots and wind drifted and difficult to locate trail. 2-4" over recent days and another 2-4" during the day. Very windy at Coney Lake, limited visibility.
01-21-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Brainard Lake
Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Waldrop (Winter Only)
Mostly Snow Packed The Snowshoe Trail is widely packed with no narrow trenching all the way to Brainard Lake. Bare boots are sufficient for travel. Microspikes optional.
01-20-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Woodland Lake Trail (Devils Thumb jct to Woodland lake)
Mostly Snow Packed Enjoyable weather - 30 degrees, sunny, very little wind. Started from Hesse trailhead and encountered icy conditions within first mile. Packed snow on first few miles of the Bypass and Woodland Lake Trails. Windblown snow and drifts in a few areas.
01-20-2020 East Portal 9,211 Rogers Pass Lake
Completely Snow Covered Turned around at the boulder field just below the final climb to the top around Rogers Pass Lake (3.6 miles in). Excellent coverage, a few rocks sticking out of the snow in the trail, easily avoidable if you go slow enough to look out for them.
01-17-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Woodland Lake Trail (Devils Thumb jct to Woodland lake)
Woodland Lake Trail (Woodland Lake to Skyscraper)
Woodland Lake
Skyscraper Reservoir
Completely Snow Covered Skied up to Woodland Lake from Hessie TH. Conditions good on lower section below Woodland Lake Trail; packed snow passable for boots but advise traction device. Skis or snowshoes needed by junction with Devil's Thumb Bypass Trail. Woodland Trail needed to be broken with 2-4" soft snow from this week on top of a deep base. Surprisingly pleasant morning; clear and mostly calm but becoming more overcast through the morning. Turned around at Woodland Lake at 10:00 as storm moved in with lmited visibility, high winds and deep powder. Nice ski out.
01-17-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Devils Thumb Trail (Hessie to Diamond Lake Trail Jct)
Completely Snow Covered Trail is snow packed but in good condition.
01-15-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Brainard Lake
Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Mostly Snow Packed There is about 4-5 inches of new snow on all the trails and road. Watch for trail blazes because the trail can be hard to find. Snowshoes recommended due to drifting on the road. Beautiful conditions and lots of snow!
01-10-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Brainard Lake
Red Rock Lake
Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Mostly Snow Packed Trail conditions were spectacular! There is just enough snow to snowshoe and ski comfortably, but there isn't so much that you wouldn't get away with using microspikes. Snowshoe Trail is completely covered in snow and deep but hard-packed on most sections. Brainard Lake Road had plenty of snow, but there were some sections with not much accumulation so be careful there. Have fun and be safe!
01-06-2020 Camp Dick/Peaceful Valley 8,600 Buchanan Pass Trail (Wilderness edge to Red Deer Lake jct)
Red Deer Lake Trail
Red Deer Lake
Buchanan Pass Trail (Trail head to Wilderness Sign at Middle St. Vrain 4x4 Road)
Buchanan Pass Trail (Wilderness Sign to Wilderness Boundary)
Completely Snow Covered -
01-05-2020 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Brainard Lake
Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Mostly Snow Packed Conditions were great today! Minimal wind and lots of sunshine. The snowshoe trail up to Brainard lake is in excellent condition and packed with lots of snow, we would highly recommend snowshoes for this route. We turned around at the CNC warming cabin just north of the lake and returned on the road. The upper part of the road will require equipment (snowshoes/crampons) but last 2 miles of road are well packed down and easy to traverse. Skiers at the warming hut said that the CNC ski trail was in excellent condition too.
01-05-2020 East Portal 9,211 Forest Lake (Upper)
Completely Snow Covered Loovely, great coverage. Toboggan run down from Forest Lakes, as usual.
01-04-2020 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 Arapaho Pass Trail (4th of July TH to Mine site)
Completely Snow Covered The Fourth of July road from the winter gate at the Hessie Trailhead to Fourth of July Trailhead is almost completely covered with hard-packed snow. The skiing conditions are fast (it is zippy), although you will encounter some large snow drifts near the end of the road around Buckingham Campground. Note that parking at Hessie can quickly fill up on weekends. Also, the section of road from the town of Eldora to the Hessie Trailhead is extremely icy. You may have difficulties if you do not have an all wheel drive vehicle. Several cars were stuck while I was there.
01-01-2020 East Portal 9,211 So Boulder Creek Trail (TH to Forest Lakes Junction jct)
Completely Snow Covered Snow conditions are excellent in the East Portal area. Note to skiers: The ski trail 100 yards above the route junction meadow on the South Boulder Creek Trail is now open. The trees that were blocking the trail have been removed.
12-29-2019 Rainbow Lakes 10,010 Rainbow Lakes
Mostly Snow Packed If you ever need a reason to be grateful for living in Colorado, take a ski or a snow shoe on the Rainbow Lakes Road. Aside from a few wind scoured sections (which is normal), most of the route is covered in a fresh blanket of soft snow, perfect for skiing and snow shoeing. From the winter gate to the campground is about 4 miles, making this a fun out and back trip.
12-28-2019 Hessie Trailhead 9,000 King Lake Trail (Devils Thumb trail jct to King Lake)
King Lake
Betty Lake
Bob Lake
Completely Snow Covered -
12-25-2019 East Portal 9,211 So Boulder Creek Trail (TH to Forest Lakes Junction jct)
So Boulder Creek Trail (Forest Lakes Trail Jct to Crater Lake)
Completely Snow Covered The trail conditions are great in the East Portal area. Plenty of snow, so the rocks are all covered. Once you are in 2 or 3 miles, skis or snowshoes become necessary because fewer people have been in that far to pack the trail. While we were up there, it snowed an inch or two, so in addition to having a white Christmas, the trail conditions got even better.
12-23-2019 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Waldrop (Winter Only)
Mostly Snow Packed The Waldrop and North Snowshoe trails from the Gateway Trailhead to Brainard Lake are snow packed. The road around Brainard Lake is windblown and bare in several places but has good coverage on the west side of the lake.
12-22-2019 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Mitchell Lake Trail (TH to Mitchell Lake)
St Vrain Trail - South (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered Sourdough, S St Vrain and Mitchell Lake trails good and snow packed, skis or snowshoes required. Brainard road icy, snowshoes not required, traction device advised. Windswept around Brainard Lake
12-21-2019 East Portal 9,211 Crater Lake Trail
Mostly Snow Packed The South Boulder Creek and Crater Lakes Trails are completely snow covered. While the South Boulder Creek Trail is well packed out, the Crater Lakes Trail is still covered in deep snow and requires skis or snow shoes for easier passage.
12-14-2019 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Brainard Lake
Completely Snow Covered All trails in the Brainard Lake Recreation Area have recent decent fresh snow due to the storm this weekend and are completely covered. Snowshoes or skis highly recommended. Snow was somewhat wet making downhill skiing slow going.
12-07-2019 East Portal 9,211 So Boulder Creek Trail (TH to Forest Lakes Junction jct)
Completely Snow Covered South Boulder Creek Trail is completely snow covered. Excellent skiing and snowshoeing conditions.
11-29-2019 Brainard Lake Recreation Area 10,525 Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only)
Completely Snow Covered The trails at Brainard are in great shape due to the big storm a few days ago. We followed the snowshoe trail to the lake and returned on the snowshoe trail and the road. Plenty of snow everywhere. Hopefully, the wind tonight won't disturb the snow too much so that we can have great conditions this weekend.
11-24-2019 East Portal 9,211 Forest Lake (Lower)
Mostly Snow Packed There are a few rocky sections between the parking area and the Wilderness Boundary on the South Boulder Creek Trail and also on the first 1/4 mile of the Forest Lake Trail. Otherwise, the trail is snow packed, and all of the skiers I encountered looked very happy. Conditions are fast right now . Be careful of stumps and logs, particularly up near Forest Lakes. These obstacles are not completely covered yet.