After finishing the Georgetown Ice Races, Bob decided to take the "scenic" route home and took Guanella Pass across to Highway 285 to go home. He wasn't sure how much snow would be on the trail, but figured if it got too deep, he'd just turn around. Since he was doing the trail solo he wouldn't have any backup.
While Guanella pass is little more than a paved road during the summer, it is not maintained or plowed during the winter so can get very deep with snow. This time, the snow wasn't too deep, only 8 to 12 inches There were already tracks from other vehicles traversing it, so Bob knew he'd have no problems.
After passing the hydroelectric dam, the snow finally began getting deep but was still easily passable, with tracks still very visible. There was only about a foot of powdery snow on the road.
Not too far in, Bob came across a couple of Jeeps -- a Cherokee and Wrangler. The Cherokee was parked at the top of the hill, and the Wrangler off to the side, half way down the hill. Bob thought he'd stop and say hello, and see if they were all right. Sure enough, the Wrangler had been playing around, and had gone too far to the left edge of the snow and hung his front driver's side tire over a berm of snow, high-centering his front axle. Bob was happy to offer a tow, as their friends in the Cherokee didn't have a strap.
Bob turned around to head down hill and pull his TJ out, and sure enough stuck his passenger side tire on the same type of snow berm, but on the opposite side of the trail. After driving sideways at a 45 degree angle halfway down the hill, Bob finally managed to pop his tire free. It was obvious why it was so difficult for the other guy to get his Jeep free, and since the other Jeep had little or no lift, he couldn't straddle the berm until free. Everyone chuckled about this, and that it was lucky Bob hadn't stuck himself in the process. After pulling the stuck TJ out, Bob gathered his strap and wished the others good luck as they left. T
he grateful group thanked Bob and went on their way down toward Georgetown.
Much of the rest of the trail was uneventful. There were beautiful views and very deep snow in places, but still nothing that would stop Bob from continuing without difficulty. About 45 minutes after starting, Bob arrived at Highway 285, aired up and headed North back toward home.
Reports from Other Days: 3
Use the arrows or dots to flip through the previews of the other reports for Guanella Pass. Click one of them to read more and see all of the photos from that day.