|By Leo Paik
From Westminster, Colorado
Feb 15, 2013
March 15-19 will be subject to the whims of weather when it comes to planning a climbing trip to CO. It could be rain, snow, sun, warm, or cold. So, weather will have a huge influence.
Easy first: 14'er, none will be heavily traveled at that time. All will have significant snow issues to consider. Avalanche issues will likely be a factor to consider. You'll probably need to have some sort of floatation (e.g. snowshoes) which you can rent at Bent Gate and ski poles (which you can rent most any ski place or maybe at Bent Gate). Almost all will start at 8-10K elevation, so they will have snow pretty close to the get go. It'll be cold for sure up top, if you get high.
Hikes: There'll be plenty of hikes in the Flatirons (some parking areas charge $5) near Boulder at lower elevation 5-8K. NCAR off Table Mesa will have free access. Shorter but nice hikes in Golden Gate Canyon SP ($7 fee/day). Rocky Mt. National Park will have good hiking with some having fees, some not. Lumpy Trailhead or McGraw Ranch or Long's Peak (will have snow) will be free.
Climbing: there'll be tons. Lots of options in the Flatirons. Tiny sport and gear routes at N. Table Mt. if it isn't particularly warm. 1-4 pitch mostly sport options in Clear Creek Canyon, often soft grades, stay on the North side (sunny). 1-4 pitch options in Boulder Canyon, often soft grades, stay on the North side (sunny). Eldorado Canyon SP has great options 1-7 pitch, mostly gear routes, $7 / day fee. South Platte has tons of granite options 1-12 pitch. Challenges in finding some areas, some with decent approaches, many with stiff grades.
There'll be way more than you can fit in during a 5 day trip or even a 3 month trip.