This wasn't exactly a club run since it was just my wife and I but I thought you'd like to see some pix of the pass road and the snow slide.
We drove up from the Marble side of Schofield Pass. I didn't really expect to get past the snow slide but I wanted to see it firsthand. We ended up camping not too far from Crystal. This is a beautiful place! I'd highly rec' the Lead King loop as a mild (maybe intermediate) trail for those who want some killer scenery, great hiking, and some wheeling that won't have the SO asking "What were you thinking?"
The first shot is looking up the canyon, about a mile past the turn for Lead King Basin. Devils Punch Bowl is another half mile up past the snow slide. The road is a narrow shelf with few opportunities to turn around or pass another vehicle. Be aware of the few wide spots and don't drive up anything you aren't will to back down. In the picture you can see the road on the lower left, then it dissappears under the snow as it climbs. The snow is covered with lots of pine needles, branches, small rocks and dirt.
The second shot is looking across the river just below the slide. The debris on the snow is clear here.
The third shot is looking up the road at the slide. As usual, the picture loses the steepness of the road. Its climbing rapidly here. It looks like a simple V with the dirt on the left and the snow on the right. With front and rear lockers, it shouldn't be too big an obstacle. With just a rear locker, I doubt I could do it. Not in the picture is a sizeable rock sticking out of the dirt wall at the high side of the slide. Without sliders and rear end protection I think you'd be hard pressed to clear it without scrapes.
After sizing up the difficulty of the snow crossing, I looked up the road and found another surprise. About a 100yds from the snow, a single rock had rolled on the road and completely blocked it. It wasn't huge but but without 4-6 guys armed with some big pry bars, its a show stopper. A week or two before, a couple guys were able to drive down from the Crested Butte side of the pass and make it through the snow slide driving FZJ80s. The rock must be a recent addition.
The last shot is from a hike we did up to Geneva Lake in Lead King Basin. Wow, what a place. Its in the Maroon Bells Wilderness area. If you find youself in Lead King Basin, take the time to park the truck and get out and hike. Its amazing.
Awesome report and pics Bruce! Marble and the whole Crystal river valley is one of my wife's and I favorite spots in the state! Lead King is always a reward and like you mentioned it gets better the further you hike up from the road. What amazed us this year when we stopped in Marble is the amount of homes sneaking over into the valley from the Aspen side. The locals jokeingly say "it's just the Billionaires in Aspen pushing the Millionaires out!" Thanks for the report!
Awesome! If anyone plans heading up there any time soon. Please let me know. I would like to go............
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