Sangre de Cristo mountains (CO) in spring?
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Eric Carlson
(carl9son) - F

Locale: Upper Midwest
Sangre de Cristo mountains (CO) in spring? on 02/15/2011 19:30:26 MST Print View

I'll be traveling for work in mid-March and I'm hoping someone from CO/NM/TX can comment on the feasibility of a weekend backpacking trip in this area that time of year (the CO portion). Essentially I'm uncertain about the snow and trail conditions. I'll be traveling light without winter-specific gear. Is this even worth attempting?

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Sangre de Cristo mountains (CO) in spring? on 02/15/2011 19:46:32 MST Print View

March in the Rockies is still winter!

You mentioned Texas; Big Bend NP or the Guadalupe Mountains would be do-able.

Jason McSpadden
(JBMcSr1) - M

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Sangre de Cristo Mountains in March on 02/15/2011 19:59:49 MST Print View

Mary is right. March is still winter in Colorado. March and April are often our snowiest months but usually in March the deep cold of the San Luis Valley is lifting or at least doesn't last as long.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Sangre de Cristo Mountains in March on 02/15/2011 20:26:44 MST Print View

Don't know how "light" you are traveling, but if you have not been to the Sand Dunes, it could be worth investigating. If you got lucky on the weather, fleece and a windbreaker would suffice, and you could get in a great hike or two. The nearest motels are in Alamosa, about 45 minutes away. The campground is open, but expect 20° nights.

A great trip report can be found Here.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Sangre de Cristo mountains (CO) in spring? on 02/15/2011 20:33:24 MST Print View

Northern NM still getting a lot of snow (historically) then too.

Paul Magnanti
(PaulMags) - MLife

Locale: People's Republic of Boulder
Sangres on 02/16/2011 21:51:43 MST Print View

Snow will linger in the Colorado high country will into June. I went backcountry SKIING in early June last year.

If you are into winter camping and snowshoeing/skiing (and don't go into avalanche areas), it is a beautiful area.

If you want to explore something neat, and want to do the car camping thing, the Sand Dunes are a cool place indeed. My girlfriend and I went there over Thanksgiving (had the campground almost all to ourselves!) and had a wonderful time. Beautiful, unique and fantastic area.

My Great Sand Dunes Report



The nearby wetlands get a massive Sandhill Crane migration about the time you plan on going. Another great way to spend a day from what I heard. Supposed to be very impressive.
http://www.insideoutsidemag.com/issues/2007/January_February/San_Luis_Valley_Sandhill_Crane_Migration/

Edited by PaulMags on 02/16/2011 21:56:55 MST.

Mike B
(highwarlok) - F
Did you make the trip? on 03/19/2011 21:52:20 MDT Print View

Eric did you make the trip?
I plan on making one in late May and I am wondering how you found the snow.
Looks like they have less snow in the Southern Sangres then in the rest of the state.

Mike