Peak(s):  Middle Mtn A  -  13,100 feet
PT 13,460  -  13,460 feet
PT 13,322  -  13,322 feet
Post Date:  08/11/2013
Date Climbed:   08/04/2013
Posted By:  piper14er

 Meet me in the Middle - Sawatch trio  

August 4, 2013
Middle Mountain A (Elevation 13,100 feet)
Unnamed 13460
Unnamed 13322 or Lake Fork Peak (Elevation 13,322 feet)
Sawatch Mountain Range
Middle Mountain A CO Peak Rank: 568
39.0128°N, 106.5758°W
Unnamed 13460 CO Peak Rank: 281 (Tri-Centennial)
39.0046°N, 106.5946°W
Lake Fork Peak CO Peak Rank: 374
38.9987°N, 106.5541°W

Mileage: 7.3 miles
Trailhead at the end of County Road 399. Take South Fork Lake Creek Road (CR 399) (south of La Plata off of Highway 82, west of Twin Lakes). Turn left off of South Fork Lake Creek Road.
Vertical: 4800 feet.
Roundtrip Time: approximately 7.5 hour’s roundtrip

What the? AAAHHH.

Well that definitely woke me up.

I followed the trail for a short way to where the scrub oak was not as thick. I got wet anyway.


Morning glow.

A look ahead with the summit on the left.

Sunrise over the mountains.

A closer look.

The ridge.

Colorful Red Peak.

Middle Mountain A summit.

Clouds below and beyond the peaks.

A look ahead towards Unnamed 13460.

The ridge to Unnamed 13460.

A look back.

The ridge is looking good.

Whoops, spoke too soon. Who put the rocks in the way?

A look ahead where I skirted the ridge.


The summit of Unnamed 13460.

The ridge.

A closer look at the summit.

Lake Fork Peak (just right of sun dot).

This shows the ridge I bypassed on the way from Middle Mountain A to Unnamed 13460 from the basin below.


The trek so far was fairly innocuous besides skirting the ridge but now it was decision time, do I grab Lake Fork Peak also?

I headed down to the main trail and decided it would work best to catch the trail off of Lake Pass and then up. Unfortunately I never did find that trail, if it even exists. I had gone a ways down the main trail before diving down to the creek and all the willows.

The truck was only a few hundred feet lower and 10-15 minutes away so psychologically it was a little difficult to start back up again. It was almost like starting a new hike. It was slow going across a lot of rock above the drainage.

So here we go up the dry waterfall.

No trail.

The ridge.

This is looking down again from up high. The small lake is on Lake Pass.

The summit.

Once on the summit it looked good to head back down the north ridge to the farther saddle.

The descent route started okay and then there was a bit of zigzagging to bypass a small drop in the drainage. Up.

Once past that it was some willows and back on the trail. Ten minutes to the truck but the strange creature was gone. Whew.

My GPS Tracks on Google Maps (made from a .GPX file upload):

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

  • Comments or Questions

08/13/2013 00:09
Heck of a wake up call. Pluggin' away at those Sawatchers. Perhaps another range down this year!


Sawatch me
08/13/2013 02:05
I was going to try, will have to see, still 20 some left and I see you and Derek were close by too.


No problem
08/13/2013 04:14
I see an easy 4-6 weekends left. A few scrambles. Weather dependent. Maybe not all that canine friendly.

Yes, his idea of a forecasted bad weather backup plan involves 21 mile, 9 hr death marches up and down Cross Creek.

”It'll be easy; cruiser trail” he says, jogging off into the distance...


D*mn you, Piper14er!
08/13/2013 14:46
More Sawatch 13ers to add to my list ... thanks for the beta! Had almost given up on Billie Jean being included in the beautiful photos. Happy trails!


No Trail!
08/13/2013 22:17
I hear you on this one. I did Lake Fork Peak and the 12ers nearby earlier this summer and had to fight the willow terror as well. If there was ever a trail, it long ago was swallowed by the willows. That drainage is a nice place.


a mix of hard and easy
08/14/2013 02:58
yea Ryan the last peaks are a mix, so maybe, and Derek never did kill me off, despite all the death marches and ”new standard rotes”, not sure what I'll do now...

Presto always more peaks and Billie Jean pics

Super, my map showed trails but I did not find anything from below looking up or above looking down, just rocks and willows


08/17/2013 03:14
a fan of porcupines.

Now, really, my trips are not that bad??


08/17/2013 13:05
just kidding Furthermore, seriously I would not have as many peaks without those big trips

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