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Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

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Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

Postby Basham » Sun Mar 19, 2017 12:11 am

I need suggestions for what route I should take on each. I'm not trying to camp on the mountain for I will be with somebody, just not on the mountain. I just want to know which route will be available for that time and take no more than a day.
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Re: Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

Postby surgent » Sun Mar 19, 2017 12:46 am

Late April on Humphreys Peak will probably be a mix of snow and mud, then more snow on the high ridges, but by then, if it's been dry, there should be bare lanes through the snow.

I hiked it once in June and there was still some big patchy sections of snow on places. Mud will probably be the biggest problem. And it's windy up at the top ridges.

You should take the usual Humphreys Peak Trail from the lower Snow Bowl parking lot. It's your only choice and any other choice won't lessen the mud. I'd suggest to carry along little instep crampons and an axe, but you may not need them. April is usually dry, but if we get one last big storm for the season, it could impact the route for a few weeks.
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Re: Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

Postby Bark Eater » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:21 pm

Wheeler via Williams Lake all depends on the snow conditions. Could be fine. Could be high avy potential if they get a big dump. Check with the Taos ski area or ranger station for current conditions close to your trip. Wheeler via Bull of the Woods is less avy danger but longer and much more exposed. Could be a very long day in late April.
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Re: Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

Postby Basham » Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:22 pm

After reading, I think I'm gonna go in early June, before it gets too hot. Any suggestion for clothing?
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Re: Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

Postby Basham » Tue Mar 21, 2017 3:44 pm

Hell, I might also try Mt Elbert (obviously, I'm going for state highpoints).
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Re: Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

Postby mstender » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:43 pm

Basham wrote:After reading, I think I'm gonna go in early June, before it gets too hot. Any suggestion for clothing?

June actually tends to be hottest time in AZ just before the monsoon kicks in which moderates the temps but then you will have to deal with frequent thunderstorms in the mountains. Last year on June 18 we did Fremont Peak (11969 ft) which is very close to Humphreys and it was warm in shorts and T-shirt on the summit, temps in Flagstaff were in the 90s and back in Phoenix it was 118F! However the humidity was in the single digits with gorgeous blue skies and not a single cloud.
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Re: Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

Postby surgent » Wed Mar 22, 2017 5:11 am

June is hot in the state but usually stable. Thunderstorms should not be a concern. Flagstaff can get warm (80s) but the highest parts of the peaks are usually pleasant, but as mstender said, when it gets really hot, then it can be quite warm even at near 12K!

If this is your first time on Humphreys, take the route from Snow Bowl. It's easy to get to, a good trail, not too long (9 miles r/t). Wear layers. It may be cold in the mornings, but warm as the day wears on. Assuming normal June conditions, the usual layers (polypro, other lightweight wicking shirts, a fleece layer or two and a shell) should suffice. Wear something for the head, plus long pants. The shell will help with the possible high winds at the summit ridge.

You won't be lonely on the trail. There's always a steady stream of hikers.
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Re: Doing Humphreys and Wheeler (NM) late April-early March

Postby Basham » Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:45 pm

Well, I think that Elbert and Wheeler are not going to be done, but I'll hopefully be able to do Humphreys. The only thing in my way is the weather.
P.S.
I've spent 99% of my life in Texas. June is usually upper-80's with 30%-90% humidity. Been in temperatures up to 113F with 60% humidity and worn a t-shirt and blue-jeans (my preference, regardless of temperature) in temperatures as low as 45F.
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