Please submit any useful information about climbing Humphreys Peak that may be useful to other climbers. Consider things such as access and accommodation at the base of Humphreys Peak, as well as the logistics of climbing to the summit.
Date of hike: April 13th 2017
Started around 10 am at Snowbowl parking lot. I had a very difficult time finding and then staying on the trail from the very start due to snow pack. I decided to stay just left of the resort in the trees. I didn't wear any snowshoes or crampons so I was kick punching the whole way up. Popped up just left of the saddle and headed for the peak. The wind was high and the temperature dropped substantially. Bring extra layers!
It was a bit sketchy up top due to the ice and high wind. Spent only about a minute up on Humphreys peak then headed back down.I did a lot of sliding but the trekking poles helped quite a bit. Came out of the trees just above Heart Prairie and was back in the parking lot just before 2pm. I feel like not following the trail and heading straight up helped speed up time and made it easier to navigate!
Started a little after 7am and had a gut feeling that this was too late with a forecast of snow shower in PM.
Wind wasn't a factor below the tree line even though the forecast was severe gust. Trail was still walkable with fair amount of new snow on top of old from the night before. Sign is not visible especially with deeper snow cover. It's easy to get lost near the steep approach toward the saddle and trail merge. I did not carry crampons but only a pair of trail running shoes (Pearl Izumi Peak II), so I had to be very careful on every step I make. It got quite gusty on the saddle onward to the peak. Follow the wooden post and do not wonder off, it's easy to get lost. Back track if there is any doubt of off trail. Snow storm came sooner than expected around 11am while on San Francisco Peak. Then it was whiteout with ice hail blown over 40+mph. Visibility was only arm length, so spotting a wooden post was considered a blessing. Didn't realize I was at the peak when I saw a sign-in metal case with Humphreys Peak post laying on the ground after being blown down from daily strong gust. It was noon. The tougher part was descending as whiteout blizzard condition continued. Layers of clothing is very important. I also had climbing helmet and two hiking poles, which worked wonder in leveraging from hard pack snow footing. Ice axe would be more appropriate in deep snow condition like this in case of a slip down the slope. Snow was hard-packed in the afternoon toward the bottom and it made progression more difficult.
Took 4 hours to get down with numerous slips and falls. Helmet and foot traction device certainly advisable for condition like this. This hike with winter condition was more like a climb to Mt. Shasta or Rainier, both I consider snow hike and moderately easy. Encountering a snow storm like this is a first, thanks for the mountain-forecast's weather forecast.
I climbed the peak on Tuesday, April 21,2015. My dog and I left the Snow Bowl parking lot at 7 am and arrived at the top by 10:20 am. We encountered snow and ice on the lower trail in the forest. More snow below the saddle, and mostly clear the rest of the climb. Visibility was fair at the top with haze and clouds obscuring the potential great views. Winds were light and temperature in the 30's. I used my worn Kahtoola's for traction on the snow and ice.
Hiked to peak on 05/10/13. New snow from night before. Peak was about 37 degrees F. Winds were >50mph. Heavy snow on last saddle before peak. With the freeze thaw, conditions of snow may be soft, or may be slick. Depends on day. Crampons not needed, but they helped on the way up just before the saddle.