Need backcountry info - Mountain Buzz

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Old 11-15-2005   #1
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 4
Need backcountry info

I am new to the front range and am looking for a way to find out current backcountry conditions to local areas ( under 2hrs from Denver). I thought that this sight was for Backcountry skiiers but no one is mentioning anything about backcountry conditions just in bound areas. Whats up? Should I use a different sight and if so let me know where.

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Old 11-15-2005   #2
Andy H.'s Avatar
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
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Just ask it and someone will chime in. Its just that there's been a lot of convesation about the areas lately. Awhile back someone asked the same thing you did but wanted to know about skiing the areas...

If you're new to the Front Range and have come from another part of the country, the first advice is this:

Recalibrate everything you know about avalanche conditions and what's safe to ski or not. Colorado typically has one of the most dangerous snowpacks around and its rotten at the base this year like most. Elsewhere there are guys skiing the kinds of steeps that we'd never think of getting onto before things stabilize in April - May.

Check out the Colorado Avalanche Info. Center and book mark it.

Be safe and have fun!

Nothing in the world is more yielding and gentle than water. Yet it has no equal for conquering the resistant and tough. The flexible can overcome the unbending; the soft can overcome the hard. - Lao Tse
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Old 11-15-2005   #3
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just ask and you shall recieve. dont get butt hurt man, this is way forums work. someone asks something, everyone responds. if theres no current topics pretaining to what you are looking for, rather than being a dick, start a new topik.

it helps if you ask about a particular area (ie, SW Colo, Steamboat Area, Sawatch Range, etc) so people who have the full downlow from that area will know to post
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Old 11-15-2005   #4
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Eagle County, Colorado
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I reiterate what Andy said... If you are moving from Cali or something, beware the continental snowpack, and make sure you have your avy knowledge and gear.

There are thousands of BC spots, but some popular spots include Burthoud, Loveland Pass (which you can car shuttle), and there is tons of lift accessabile backcountry from ski areas. The big question is what someone else said, what exactly are you looking for... People will tell you about some of the more popular stuff, but you might have to make some friends before they start sharing the more off the beaten path goods...
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Old 11-15-2005   #5
Join Date: Jun 2004
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The best way to get current info on the snow conditions in the Colorado BC is to become a friend of the CAIC
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Old 11-15-2005   #6
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 49 brother. Also recommend that you take a weekend and scout out some areas. The forum is a good place to find other people with more helpful experience. Diamond Peaks west of fort collins is good, but pretty unstable at the monment with the large amount of snow that has graced us with it's tanglizing beauty.

Learn it, live it, love it
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Old 11-16-2005   #7
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Still looking for current backcountry info

Me again. I came here from southern Colorado and am familiar with a few of the BC areas but what I am looking for are current reports of snow conditions in fairly specific backcountry areas. ie - what kind of base is out there(depth and how bonded it was). Its early season and I am wondering where the snow is right now. I know summit county got hit this weekend but that doesn't mean everywhere has a good base. I am also aware of the early season avi danger that does exist. So if any one has been out in the BC (under 2hrs from Denver) recently please let me know what you found on the aspects you were skiing.
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Old 11-17-2005   #8
Steamboat, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 464
Hey Stewart.. Your best bet for finding decent snow 2hrs from Denver, this weekend, and probably through Thanksgiving, are the Northern Mtns. Never Summers, Cameron pass, Buffalo Pass are all holding roughly a 3ft base. Been skiing NW-N-NE aspects above and below treeline and finding nice pow in the sheltered areas. Watch the snowpack in the cooler higher elevations where slab conditions lurk. Be safe and enjoy.
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Old 11-17-2005   #9
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 86
Stewart - Basically, you questions stink. You can't just ask for backcountry conditions and expect folks to answer. we are from all over in the state. PICK an area and ask, and your likely to get a bit more feedback. I know there are lots of folks here who ski, Cameron, Berthoud, Monarch, Vail, Fremont, etc....

I know I have got some great feedback on conditions, snow totals and the like from the folks down in salida for monarch.

If your thinking Berthoud. I was there Tuesday, the High Trail Trees were nice and filled in, a good base and good pow. Doubt there will be much in the way of pow this weekend. but there will be a bit of a base. Floral Park is filling in, but still a bit thin for me. Both front sides are good, and if your by yourself I recommend staying with that. I hear folks are skiing the 80-90's but i hav bad early season experience there. and contrary to some opinions, it can very easliy slide, and the aquaduct is a much more dangerous traverse than folks give it.

You should already be aware there was a fatality at berthoud this year. And from observations Tuesday, I am suprised there wasn't another one. Berthoud is a lot better than Loveland, but still gets a bunch of yahoos without the right gear or know how. When at berthod I make sure nobody is ever above me.
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Old 11-26-2005   #10
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Thanks Salto and Frenchie. The beta you gave is exactly what I am looking for.

I did though get to Berthoud last week but never got a chance to let others know what I found. Last week up second creek drainage we found good snow with a descent base at around 11,000ft. Once we got below 11,000 though there wasn't much base and we were pretty much skiing through. The pits we dug around 11,500 and Northfacing did not inspire a lot of confidence though. We had about 4.5 feet of snow with a nice 10 inch TG layer at the bottom. The other layers seemed to be pretty well bonded together but it didn't take much to get the bottom layer to fail. Because of this we stayed on some nice short tree runs. Nothing too surprising for early season Colorado, but thought others might want to know.

Has anyone been up to the Moffet tunnel outside of Rollinsville this year. If so how was it. Or how about Mt Quandry, I think I remember doing a mellow ridge ski up there years ago.
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