Trail Report - Quandary Peak - Colorado

August 12, 2019

Written by Paul van Valkenburgh

Showing Small Pictures    

Trail Report - Quandary Peak - Colorado
Route: East Ridge
7.1 Miles Round Trip
3348 feet of elevation gain
Date Climbed: August 12, 2019
Climbers: Sheri, Paul

Sheri With East Face Of Quandary Behind

Quandary Peak! Some of Colorado's 14ers see more action than others, and Quandary is one that sees lots of action. There are several reasons for this. Quandary is relatively close to Denver, it's a relatively easy 14er to climb (keeping in mind there is NO easy 14er, but just relatively!), and the trail head is paved and easy to find (so, no 4WD roads like many 14ers). After spending some time in the Evergreen and Silverthorne area in 2019, Sheri and I decided to give Quandary's East Ridge a go!

The East Ridge of Quandary is Class 2. The trail begins through some beautiful alpine areas and is very well marked. Things begin to get a little rockier and challenging as you begin to break out of the tree line. The views to the south are particularly impressive looking over Blue Lakes and over to 13er North Star Mountain.

Sheri Ready For Quandary Peak

Sheri Heads Up Quandary Peak Trail

The Trail Up Quandary Peak

The Trail Up Quandary Peak

Cutie Chipmunk On Quandary Peak

Sheri Making Way Up Quandary Peak

Looking Towards Blue Lakes And North Star Mtn

North Star Mountain And Blue Lakes

Paul And Sheri On Quandary Peak

After a relatively easy section where the trail flattens out, you begin the steep section up the final face of Quandary. While the section is still rated as class 2, especially if you haven't done a lot of picking your way up rocky, scree-filled, above-tree-line mountain walls out West, it can still be quite challenging. You need to take your time and make sure each step is a good one. While a fall would not be fatal, you could still get banged up pretty good if you take a bad tumble!.

Sheri With East Face Of Quandary Behind

View Down To Blue Lakes

Sheri Making Her Way Up Quandary Peak

Paul On Quandary Peak

The Trail Heads Up The East Ridge Of Quandary

Mountain Goat On Trail Up Quandary Peak

Trail Getting Gnarly Up Quandary Peak

Looking Down East Ridge Of Quandary Peak

Higher Up The East Ridge On Quandary Peak

Getting Closer To The Summit Of Quandary Peak

Sheri and I had a bluebird day and took our time. The summit of Quandary is beautiful with views to the South over North Star Mountain and looking at the Decalibron 14er group (Democrat, Cameron, Lincoln, and Bross). Views to the north look up towards the Breckenridge area.

Final Steps To The Summit Of Quandary Peak

Sheri On The Summit Of Quandary Peak

The Summit Of Quandary Peak

Summit Views North From Quandary Peak

Summit Views Northwest From Quandary Peak

Summit Views South From Summit Of QuandaryPeak

Paul On The Summit Of Quandary Peak

Geologic Survery Marker On Quandary Peak

Mountain goats seemed to be my theme for 2019 as I saw lots of them on 14ers. But the family sighting on Quandary was probably the best. On the way down, a family of 5 literally caravaned right in front of me... what a blast seeing these creatures that, as an east-coaster, you just never see growing up.

Moutain Goat On Quandary Peak

Awesome vid of a family of mountain goats on Quandary Peak!:

Overall Quandary is a great hike / climb! I would definitely recommend it for folks looking to get into 14ers as a first foray into getting up in elevation and tackling some above tree line rocky, scree slopes.

Hope this has been enjoyable and / or helpful to anyone reading it!!


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