Mount Sneffels, 14150 feet tall, is one of the most awe-inspiring mountains in the San Juan Range. Just drive south from Montrose to Ridgeway and the 6000-foot vertical relief of its northern aspect will have you aching to go climb it. Due to the nature of the volcanic rock that it is made of, Mount Sneffels has many wonderful couloirs to climb and ski separated by towering buttresses, and numerous ridges. The rock quality starts out bad down low and is equally hideous on top as well. Winter climbing on this mountain can be dangerous because of avalanche conditions. Mount Sneffels has a long climbing tradition. Most of the technical routes on the north face of the mountain were put up back in the 1930's and 1940's. There are many guides that cover Mount Sneffels quite well. Use Dawson's Guide to Colorado's Fourteeners, the Roach guide to the Colorado Fourteeners, Rock and Ice number 85 as just some examples of references.
Mount Sneffels has two trailheads. The Yankee Boy Basin trailhead is open year round and allows access for the snowier months. Beware of having to pay the man for the privilege to park in the summer months. Blain Basin or Blue Lakes trailhead is free year round, but smothered in by snow during the winter. Expect the road to the trailhead to be inaccessible until spring melt-off. Depending on year-to-year snow levels, Blue Lakes/Blaine Basin trailhead should be open by sometime in May.
Browse More Classics in Mount Sneffels
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Mount Sneffels:
Snake (Dogleg) Couloir Steep Snow Trad, Snow, Alpine
Southwest Ridge 3rd Trad, Alpine, Grade II
North Buttress 5.6 Trad, Alpine, 1500 feet, Grade III
Featured Route For Mount Sneffels
Snake (Dogleg) Couloir Steep Snow CO : Alpine Rock : ... : Mount Sneffels
From Blaine Basin, a glance at the north face of Mount Sneffels will reveal a couloir bisecting the right hand side of the face. Climb up the couloir for over 1000 feet. It averages 40 degrees, but steepens to 50 degrees where the couloir necks down a bit, about half way up. At the halfway point, the couloir splits at a small rock pillar. Take the dogleg to the left. At the top of the couloir, either traverse east to connect to the final few feet of the normal route (yucky) or go straight u...[more] Browse More Classics in CO