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I have spent some time in the San Juans, but by no means am I a local (i live in the front range), so I can only give you some vague information, but I hope it still helps out. Try contacting a few of the locals as your trip approaches, I have gotten a few trip maps from members here for the area via PM, and I’m sure people will be more than willing to share info. I also don’t want to describe specific tours here as it’s kind of a faux pas to do so. I’ll mention a few places that are well documented on other websites to at least give you a reference.
You have a couple of options in the Durango/Pagosa Springs area. Wolf Creek Pass and and Molas Pass being the closest and Red Mountain Pass being a little further but still accessible. You also have options around Silverton (Town on the other side of Molas Pass).
Wolf Creek has a lot more mellow options as most of the terrain is part of the Uncompahgre formation with only a few of the steeper volcanic formations that the san juans are known for. There are a few options across the street from the resort there (powerline is pretty well known and described on a number of websites so I don’t feel like I’m giving away a secret stash by mentioning it).
Molas Pass also has a few mellow options as well. I’ve ridden the stuff around Little Molas lake which allows for meadow skipping as well as venturing out to some of the chutes hanging above. There are a few well known big tours as well like Sultan and Grand Turk of this pass. The pass is pretty easy to explore as terrain is easy to spot and assess from the road; access is usually pretty good with parking options being fairly plentiful and skinning is pretty much starts right from the car.
Red Mountain Pass is much more Volcanic in nature and thus has more steep options. There is fantastic tree skiing lower on the pass (towards the Silverton side). These trees are fairly steep (approaching 40 degrees in spots), but can be pretty safe due to elevation. Just drive up the pass and you’ll see the ski lines next to or in the avalanche chutes. McMillan Peak is a pretty popular and mellow tour as well and well described on various sites.
In Silverton you have a few options in any of the Gulches you’ll drive by on the way to Silverton Mountain “resort”, although I don’t have a lot of personal experience in these Gulches, so can’t speak to how safe these would be during higher danger days.
I hope this gives you a bit of a starting point. I’m sure some of the locals will be able to provide you with much better and detailed information.December 17, 2015 at 2:41 am in reply to: where are all the COLORADO front range go getters!? #787259
I appreciate all the info. Sorry for the multiple replies. I sent the reply from my phone and it looks like it sent it multiple times. We should be in town all day Saturday, so might just run into you at Avalanche. Gonna be at the Ska/Venture party as well.December 13, 2015 at 4:56 am in reply to: where are all the COLORADO front range go getters!? #787110
gonna be out in Silverton this upcoming weekend for their opening day with the girlfriend. We’ll be riding Silverton mountain on Saturday, but hoping to get out onto Red Mountain pass on Sunday. I was hoping someone could give us some good beta on the area. Neither of us have really skied Red Mountain Pass before, wanting to keep it a little mellow and safe. Any info would be much appreciated. If you happen to be a local and/or will be in the area, we’d buy you a beer or three if you wanted show us around or just point out some runs.
Send me a PM if you can help out. Thanks.
On a side note;
I’m a local in Evergreen, off random days (some weekends, some weekdays, work nights so I can sometimes sneak out on days I work) always looking for new people to go riding with. My usual partner just had a baby, and my girlfriend works normal people hours, so I’m flying solo a lot. I go to Berthoud, Buttlers gulch, or Jones pass usually. Although I wouldn’t mind exploring St. Elmo and doing some more stuff off of Monarch pass or Hoosier pass. Have my Avy 1 (and gear of course), in good enough shape for some long days (although I may suggest beer brakes in order to disguise my need to catch my breath). So if you ever need a partner in the front range, hit me up and I’ll probably be able to get out there with you.
While I haven’t really had any time on snow with the TLT’s, when I was trying to decide on a hardboot it felt like the La Sportiva’s had a bit more room. Only had carpet time in the TLT’s, but they were definitely a little narrower. I have a little higher volume foot, so the Siderals felt a bit better. They also felt a bit softer (medially/laterally, not so much anterior/posterior). Maybe someone with time on snow with both can give you better information, but I figured I’d throw my 2 cents in.
I switched to hardboots two years ago, so I don’t have the experience that a lot of people here have. Thus far I have done a few 14ers (Bierstadt, Evans, Quandary, and Shavano so far) here that involved some descent approaches as well as scrambling up top. From what I’ve noticed, my hardboots do actually really well (I ride a pair of La Sportiva Siderals, so similar to the TLT’s). They are a little rounded on the sole and so they actually walk really well. The articulation of the boot works really well and the vibram soles help a ton when footing is iffy and the stiff sole makes up for the loss of sensation and keeps you stable even on small footholds.
I agree with your initial impressions, it’s a little clunky at first, but they really do perform more like mountaineering boots than ski boots. I would assume that you’re TLT’s will be even better. I would highly recommend getting out on some stuff with low consequences, but with a variety of footholds/footing problems. You’ll get the hang of it really quickly. I grew up skiing, so the learning curve wasn’t very steep; as always, your millage may vary.November 22, 2014 at 8:55 pm in reply to: Ideas for La Sportiva Sideral mods? Hardboot mods? #678475
Ah, I didn’t read all the way through that thread. Thanks Zude. How much did you file down your lean bar? I like the elastomer idea to keep it from being a hard stop.
Two snowboarders walking down the street get to talking. One says to the other: “hey man, I just got a new board for my wife”
his friend replies: “that’s a good trade”.
Current set up
Sierra design Flash 3 person tent
It’s a hybrid wall design tent, so fly and tent pitch as one. It does the job and is pretty big. Only weighs a little over 4lbs. Only beef I have is that it only has one vestibule and entrance.
I like the bigger cup for melting snow. I’ve used the jet boil at neg temps while above 11k feet and it worked just dandy. I always keep fuel in sleeping bag.
Freeze dried food or some kind of rice noodle meal (rice noodles cook really fast, so they work well for meals prepped at home)….and of course beers (I like dales pale ale for convenience)
Extra socks (I sometimes wear two pairs at once when it gets really cold)
Intuition liners go in the bag and usually stay on my feet
MH -20 bag (lamina I believe)
Thermarest trail pro and z pads (I like using an air and foam pad cause I’m a sissy)
Rab down jacket, compression wear, mittens, etc…..
I like to make sure I dig a good wind wall around my tent and/or the communal area; you’d be surprised at how much of a difference a good wall will make. Address cold immediately. It’s much easier to stay ahead of the cold then to work your ass off once you’re freezing. Doing a few squats and push ups before bed to get the core temp up makes going to sleep easier. And most importantly, as a friend of mine once said: “Love the suck”.
Almost forgot: pee bottle, don’t forget it. My girlfriend even has one now. She got a pee funnel and a pee bottle, winter camping became a lot more enjoyable for her after that.
Sweet; thanks hikeforturns. Great find for some pre-season re-freshers. Gotta get the brain thinking avalanches again.
I have to say I actually didn’t like Higher as much as Deeper and Further. I thought Higher focused too much on Jones’ coming up in the sport and not enough on actual riding…or hiking for that matter. It was a great tribute to Jones, but the riding wasn’t nearly as good as further or deeper (from a spectator’s perspective at least). If you want a movie about Jones and his evolution then this is a great movie. The terrain they were riding was absolutely insane, and perhaps that’s why the riding didn’t “look great”. A lot of it seemed like survival snowboarding, which, while intense, doesn’t make for great movie experience. Deeper is still my favorite of the bunch….probably for the same sentimental reasons that a lot of people feel towards it; that movie just made things so clear.
Personally, I would love to see a recreationalist version become available, simply for the amount of data that could be collected (maybe even a volunteer group with support/training from local avalanche centers). It definitely shouldn’t replace digging, but it could make the days where avalanche reports are a little ambiguous and pits come back questionable a little more manageable. I’m a big believer in more data makes for better decisions.
Will this be for everyone?….most likely not, but in a way, yes. It would be cool to have access to the individual data points for certain areas that others have taken before going out. I see the potential mostly in continental snow packs where it’s hard to tell just how prevalent weak layers are and more data points would give you a much better picture of what’s actually going on. Pockets of weakness vs huge slabs…it seems like that’s the game we’re always playing here in Colorado at least and more data would make that game a lot more manageable.
I’ll second the Sideral’s that earnyourturn mentioned. I got them last season to replace a pair of first gen Scarpa F1’s and it was a world of difference. No mods as of yet, but they do run a bit narrow so I’m getting them punched out a bit, but was able to tour a few 14ers on them last season with minimal discomfort. I can’t speak to the TLT6 myself, but I’ve heard nothing but great things, same for the TLT5. I got my Sideral’s for $275 online, so they have some good deals on them.
I believe these boots were a school project and never actually made it into development. Don’t think I’d wanna fiddle with taking the plates off, then on, switch them, loose one in the snow, dig for 45 minutes only to find out that it’s thin on top and now I have to switch again….no thanks, I’ll just keep my trusty crampons.May 12, 2014 at 1:50 am in reply to: where are all the COLORADO front range go getters!? #668241
Hey everyone. I’m looking for someone or a group of someones to go riding with this week. My usual partners have to work and I’m off from the 13th through the 17th. I’m in evergreen, so anything along the front range, summit county, etc… is good for me. I’m in ok shape and can do 4k in a day, but anything more and I start to really suck wind and complain about my legs being tired. Game for just about anything this week. Looks like we’re getting a pretty awesome refresh this week, so please don’t make me play alone on mini golf terrain!!!
I have splitboard (duh), avy gear and know how to use it (avy 1, but tour with avy 2 going for 3 and talk nothing but snow with that dude), have an axe and am comfortable on steep terrain, only problem is that I just switched to hard boots and don’t have crampons at this point. I have some basic rock gear and harness should anything come up although I’m fairly new to the vertical world and don’t know if I wanna venture there just yet.
We didn’t pick up a lot up north. Was tooling around on Berthoud earlier today dialing in the hardboot set up (finally came over to the dark side….it’s not all that dark over here by the way). Mostly looking at about 2-4 inches from last night with 6-8 in wind loaded places. Didn’t get into anything serious, so I didn’t do a full pit or anything; just a little bit of poking with the pole, and it really seems like some of those deeper layers are starting to get put away soon. That being said, I’d agree, it should get a little spicy again with this next storm though, so get your game face on if you’re playing in the BC. So jealous of the San Juan numbers….Can’t wait to get back down there.
Toured Bierstadt yesterday. Got exactly 0 turns. Coverage is thin, wind crust/sun effected with tons of depth hoar. Hoped to find some snow in the middle of the mountain, had a little snow on it, but definietly nothing rideable. The road was a nightmare, had to dig the truck out 3 times before we finally made it to duck lake. Coverage at Geneva Basin looked good pretty good though. The trees seem to be holding the snow well. Still had a great climb on a bluebird day….and who can really complain about that?
Damn, got a certified hero on our hands. Much respect CT. If I ever run into you at berthoud or loveland I’ll definitely have a cold beer in the cooler for ya; and probably something green as well.
I actually liked the movie for the most part, cool ideas, but a little too much time spent in the editing room. Was happy to see some of the other north face team members doing their thing (the kayak scene was pretty damn awesome). Would have loved to have seen more of some of the other athletes and cut about 30 minutes of slow motion dradle spinning; and who the hell thought that half pipe scene was a good idea? I would have gladly spent that time watching Conrad Anker climb cool stuff…..otherwise I think it was an interesting way to do a ski porn. Hopefully other movies will take note and just tone it down a bit.
I actually own Karakoram bindings so for me to do that I would have to buy Sparks and then the pucks that would cost me more the most expensive regular bindings.
Is there anyway to mount Karakoram bindings on a solid board?
Correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t karakorams mount into the standard inserts? I think all you’d have to do is get another ride mode interface and you should be ready to rock.