Has anyone hit Yankee Hill recently? I have a friend that just bought a stock XJ and I thought it would be a good first trail for him to hit this Saturday (5/18/2013). Is it clear at all? I went up there about a month ago and it was still pretty rough. If it's not, do you have any noob trail recommendations that are clear and will accomodate a stock XJ? Thanks!
05-17-2013 01:00 PM
I was up there on May 3rd and could only get a couple miles in before running into some really deep ruts (I'd say almost 2 feet deep) in the snow/ice. There really wasn't enough room to straddle the rut or stay to one side or the other. You had to drop your passenger side into the rut going up hill and even with 35's and 3.5" of lift my differential was hanging up on the ice that was about as hard as granite. We backed out and headed over to Apex Rd to try getting in from that side but it was also a no go. That being said, I don't think it's snowed up there since that time and it has been pretty warm so it may be an option. The pics below are the start of the ruts a few miles into the Yankee Hill trail. Anyone been up there since May 3rd?
05-17-2013 03:35 PM
I haven't had any luck but I haven't been up there for a few weeks. That's my "go-to" trail since it's so close to Denver. My brother came out with his XJ and although he has a small lift and 32'' tires the stock XJ will be fine provided some of the snow melts.
Now that I think, maybe I'll run out there after work and take the shortcut off Falls River Rd to Mine Rd and see how it looks.
This was a few weeks ago. 2nd pic shows how far I made it off Mine Rd.
.....Now that I think, maybe I'll run out there after work and take the shortcut off Falls River Rd to Mine Rd and see how it looks.....
If you're able to make a scouting run please post a report here. Was thinking about running it tomorrow and would hate to head up there for a third time this year only to make it a few miles up the trail. With all the warm weather we've been having lately I would think the trail would be passable by now.
05-18-2013 01:13 AM
Couldn't make a run after work unfortunately. I'm going to hike Mt Chief tomorrow and I'm bringing snow shoes for the 11,700ft accent. Point being the more and more I think about it there will likely still be a good amount of snow but I would bet it won't be too bad until you get closer to 9.5-10k. Just my theory from my friend hiking Mt Chief Wednesday and there was 2 feet of snow. Mt Chief overlooks Idaho Springs btw. Sorry I couldn't make the run but if you guys go I'm very curious to hear.
05-19-2013 10:29 AM
So I went up to Yankee Hill yesterday and made it pretty far back in. The trail was mostly clear except for some pretty big snow drifts here and there. Wanted to try and make it over to Kingston or Apex from the Central City side but wasn't able to get that far. I think it would have been doable but I was alone so I wasn't about to push my luck. If I had been with some other Jeeps I think we could have busted right through even the larger drifts but didn't want to try it without someone there to yank me back out if I did get stuck (why don't we mount a winch on the back of our Jeeps). Would be a blast to run with another Jeep or two (or more) though.
05-19-2013 06:55 PM
Thanks for the udpate. I wanted to run up there but solo and no recovery gear isn't my thing when 'testing' a trail. I bet within 2-3 weeks it'll be completely dry.