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winter 14'ers

Original Post
no1nprtclr · · Front range Colorado · Joined Oct 2006 · Points: 55

I am looking into doing some winter 14'ers here in Colorado.  Any suggestions for non technical 14'ers that can be done with general mountaineering ax and crampons?  I do have skis if needed with skins.  I hope it's not too vague and thank you for responses.

Daniel Joder · · Barcelona, Spain · Joined Nov 2015 · Points: 0

Have you visited You'll find plenty of info and expertise over there on this topic. To throw out a very popular first winter 14er...take a look at Quandary Peak. Trailhead is normally accessible in winter by car and many climb it with just poles and microspikes and/or snowshoes depending on how packed the trench/trail might be.

no1nprtclr · · Front range Colorado · Joined Oct 2006 · Points: 55

Thank you, I will check that out also.

Derick Page · · Ft Collins · Joined Feb 2015 · Points: 35
no1nprtclr · · Front range Colorado · Joined Oct 2006 · Points: 55

Thank you for the recommendations!!

Thaddeus F Baringer · · Boulder, CO · Joined Dec 2016 · Points: 0

If you're into skiing you can easily ski Quandary straight from the top and almost the whole way down with low avy danger if you stay on the ridge. It's been pretty windblown and horrible skiing but it still beats walking!

Dan Cooksey · · Seattle, WA · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 365

You can drive up Pikes peak and have some coffee and donuts!

Ryan Marsters · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2011 · Points: 1,006

All of them can be done with ax and crampons (and flotation), though probably half can be down with lighter traction and poles. The standard winter routes (different from the standard summer routes) aren't technically difficult in winter. 

The major considerations are for avalanche risk and being prepared for most conditions, from flotation to wind.

Without a good familiarity with the peaks and keeping an eye on avalanche/snow conditions in the preceding weeks, I'd recommend the easier peaks listed on the summitpost page. You can definitely spice it up with some scrambles like Kelso or Democrat's N Ridge, but some of those require more thought for avalanche terrain on ascent and descent via a different route.


This winter is especially funky as we had no snow the first couple months (guys were day-tripping Chicago Basin in trailrunners in January), and now we have a few feet of November/December-ish crap snow. So not as much "work" as usual, but quite dangerous now to touch any avalanche-prone terrain for a bit.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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