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Paintbrush Divide on July 16, 2019
Snow is rapidly melting in the high country as large pieces of the Teton Crest Trail begin to emerge. However, steep snow fields remain on certain trails, peaks and passes of Grand Teton, requiring an ice axe and the proper knowledge of its use. Paintbrush Divide remains an area of high consequence for those without the proper equipment. Be safe and know your limits!

On the Grand, rapid transition from snow and ice to dry rock continues to take place daily. Some climbers may be questioning whether they truly need to bring an ice axe and crampons on their trip, and the answer is: it depends. It depends on too many factors to give a generic answer to. As of right now, given the lingering snow near the summit and potential for changing weather on any given day, an ice axe and possibly crampons are still recommended for the Grand, especially on shadier aspects like the Owen-Spalding which may get icy in the morning. On the approach to the Lower Saddle, the summer route past the Caves is recommended and the fixed line is out. Only a few steep snow patches remain below the Moraine. Stay tuned for more updates, and remember, it's better to have the equipment and not use it than wish you had brought it.