Mt. Elbert

FAQ and threads for those just starting to hike the Colorado 14ers.
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Mt. Elbert

Postby bigpoppa » Wed Jun 27, 2007 5:44 pm

Planning on flying out next year from Ohio to summit Elbert and enjoy the view. Would love to get info on the mountain. Trailhead to summit time involved, time of year info, camping overnight on mountain, distance/time from Denver and so on.


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Mt Elbert posting from last weekend

Postby Denvergriz » Wed Jun 27, 2007 6:46 pm

I posted a trip report on Mt. Elbert on this site. We took the East Ridge, not the North East Ridge. If you park in the lot below I is almost 6 miles, if you have a 4WD you can reduce the trip by 1.8 miles.

Allot of people camped near the 4WD road. Trailhead to summit is 2 to 3 hours depending on your speed. There is no snow to worry about and no exposure as well.

From Denver you can take either 285 or 70 to get there. directions are this site as well.
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Postby usfgal » Wed Jun 27, 2007 8:43 pm

Standard route - it is about 2 hrs from Denver to the TH (it is easily accessible, so no worries about your vehicle). It is 9 miles roundtrip. Depending on a lot of factors, I'd expect time to the summit to be between 3 and 4 hours, possibly a little longer if you are stopping a lot. My husband and I took my parents up there a week and a half ago. My dad came in from Serbia (very low altitude). He is in decent shape, but struggled a little bit with the altitude. I think it took us b/n 3.5 and 4 hrs to summit. Time down should be less (50 to 75% of the time it took you to ascend).
The trail is easy to follow the entire way to the top, and there is probably no snow on it anymore. There was very little when we were there. There are several trip reports, but briefly - you hike through the woods for a few miles on an easy trail, with gradual elevation gain. At approximately 11,000 ft, you will come out of the woods and hike in an open area. It gets a little bit steeper. At around 13,450 ft, you will hit a section of short, steeper switchbacks. You will follow them for about 500 vertical ft. You will see a summit in front of you--it is not Mt. Elbert, so don't get your hopes up. Once you hit the false summit, the real one comes into view, and it is an easy walk on a ridge over to it. I am not sure about camping on the mountain. I would assume you are allowed to do it, and the open area above treeline would probably be a good place for it. There are tons of people camping along the road to the trailhead. I hope this helps--good luck!
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Postby Cornfed97 » Wed Jun 27, 2007 8:56 pm

Anyone done it via the Black Cloud trail head? How long did it take?
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Postby Chloe W » Tue Jul 03, 2007 9:25 am

My dad and I did Elbert as both of our first 14ers a couple of years ago, and although my dad was in pretty good shape he wasn't coming from any altitude so he struggled a bit near the top, but it was definitely a great choice as the first of many even though it was not the easiest we have done.

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