Uintas Conditions 2019

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LarryBoy

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Any sense of what pct of the trail will be snow-covered in 3 weeks? Seems to be melting pretty quickly according to the snotels, but they are a bit lower than the passes.

Is it worth bringing snowshoes?
When you say "the trail" what do you mean - the Uinta Highline? If so, don't worry about how much of the trail will be snow-covered- your limiting factors are Red Knob and Dead Horse passes. Dead Horse in particular is steep, north-facing, and may not melt out entirely this year. Far steeper than Alpine Lakes Col. Read back a few pages in this thread for various people's perspectives on Dead Horse. Short story - it certainly isnt for the faint of heart, will certainly be snow-covered, and you'll likely need to kick steps straight up the thing.
 

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LarryBoy

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Thanks Perry! Both of your suggestions are great ones. I've shifted my focus to the south slope because I'm visioning better conditions. Is thinking the south side will melted out more than the north side a false assumption?

I've been watching a few snotel stations and monitoring the melt that way. Based on just that, it appears elevation plays the largest factor, but some locations aren't what you would expect based on elevation alone.
Check out Brown Duck Lake, looping up to Cleveland Pass. Certainly will be some snow left, but there's nothing steep, it's not that hugh, and you won't see anybody. Plus it's accessed via Moon Lake road. I assume the road is open, though you could certainly call and confirm.
 

DrNed

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wabenho

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Check out Brown Duck Lake, looping up to Cleveland Pass. Certainly will be some snow left, but there's nothing steep, it's not that hugh, and you won't see anybody. Plus it's accessed via Moon Lake road. I assume the road is open, though you could certainly call and confirm.
Yep, this area is on my short list. Thanks for the help!
 

nyhiker

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When you say "the trail" what do you mean - the Uinta Highline? If so, don't worry about how much of the trail will be snow-covered- your limiting factors are Red Knob and Dead Horse passes. Dead Horse in particular is steep, north-facing, and may not melt out entirely this year. Far steeper than Alpine Lakes Col. Read back a few pages in this thread for various people's perspectives on Dead Horse. Short story - it certainly isnt for the faint of heart, will certainly be snow-covered, and you'll likely need to kick steps straight up the thing.
I was planning on doing the highline.

From the various videos and the map, it looks like there's around 400 vertical feet of fairly steep climbing, but the trail angles across it. Hard to get a sense of the angle -- certainly if it is rock hard, it could be serious, but if it is soft enough to kick steps into, it looks like just a giant slog.

Anyone have any sense of what it was like in 2011?
 

uintafly

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I've never climbed it through snow, but my recollection is that it is a pretty steep slog. If I were doing it, I'd probably bring crampons and do it first thing in the morning hoping it was nice and firm. If you use trekking poles, you could also rig a whippet as well.
 

Perry

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Difficulty is relative. The situation on Deadhorse is exposure. Cliffs below the trail with only a short distance to self arrest if you fall.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Nick

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For the vast majority of people, Dead Horse should be described as very steep and fairly exposed. The trail itself isn't that steep but the slope it traverses is. It's dirt and rocks sitting at the angle of repose. Disturb them and they go down, just like you will without solid footing or the proper skills and equipment. We were amongst the first to cross it last year and parts of the trail were practically non-existent because of the hill settling over the winter. The short snow patches were exciting to say the least. Even a little bit of snow on it can be really scary for most people.
 

Perry

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These are not the best but might give you an idea what Deadhorse Pass is like. This is a look up at the area where the trail goes...




This is looking back from the pass. You can see some of the trail...





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Eric O

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I'd love to see trail conditions around wall lake if anyone is headed up.
 

Parma

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I made a drive up to Mirror Lake Hwy this morning. Below are some photos, and yes it snowed there today!
9F6FF043-5F99-4C83-89FC-E5808A6063A9.jpeg

Trial Lake

04940831-C0CD-4F82-B780-689F174405C0.jpeg

Trial Lake Campground

FF5DEBA7-A57B-49C1-AEE9-84CC1C30F5AD.jpeg

Bald Mountain Pass

D3E0BC62-036A-41B6-B6EC-24E10DDDEBBA.jpeg

It’s snowing!

911B1FB3-1C74-499A-8EB4-D1117B8077C1.jpeg

The road to Highline Trailhead off of the Hwy
 

Artemus

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So, @Parma, are you saying/showing MLH and Bald Mountain Pass is open for business ?!?!

UDOT still shows it closed....
 

Eric O

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I'll be backpacking in the Uintas on the 27th and 28th of this month. Any recommendations for a fairly snow free area? I'm not averse to snow, but someone I'm bringing isn't a fan.

I was going to camp at Ibantik but I have a feeling it will be buried this year.
 

Perry

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I'll be backpacking in the Uintas on the 27th and 28th of this month. Any recommendations for a fairly snow free area? I'm not averse to snow, but someone I'm bringing isn't a fan.

I was going to camp at Ibantik but I have a feeling it will be buried this year.
I can't speak for Ibantik but I'm betting its going to have a lot of snow and a lot of water everywhere. I went up from Hoop Lake to Kabell Ridge yesterday and there is still a lot of snow above 10k ft. Snow is melting pretty quickly but there is a ton of it yet to melt. Generally between 10k and 11k it was either wet and muddy, running water *everywhere*, meadows are flooded. Snow from 1-3 ft deep anywhere there is a break in the tree canopy but not a lot of sunshine. I don't recall seeing anywhere that would be suitable for pitching a tent above 10k ft. Most folks would not have enjoyed my loop yesterday... I just accepted the challenge. At 10,600 ft I'm sure Ibantik will be hike-able but its going to be a soggy mess I'm afraid.
 

Eric O

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I can't speak for Ibantik but I'm betting its going to have a lot of snow and a lot of water everywhere. I went up from Hoop Lake to Kabell Ridge yesterday and there is still a lot of snow above 10k ft. Snow is melting pretty quickly but there is a ton of it yet to melt. Generally between 10k and 11k it was either wet and muddy, running water *everywhere*, meadows are flooded. Snow from 1-3 ft deep anywhere there is a break in the tree canopy but not a lot of sunshine. I don't recall seeing anywhere that would be suitable for pitching a tent above 10k ft. Most folks would not have enjoyed my loop yesterday... I just accepted the challenge. At 10,600 ft I'm sure Ibantik will be hike-able but its going to be a soggy mess I'm afraid.
That confirms what I expected. Thank you!
 

slc_dan

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