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North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Trailhead conditions, directions, roads, parking, camping, etc. Trailhead Info/Status
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North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Postby gulo » Sun Aug 23, 2009 8:48 pm

Hello

My dad is visiting from Europe and I would like to finally hike a 14er with him. I am deciding between Mt.Elbert or the Mt.Democrat / Lincoln combo

I am mainly worried about getting to the trail head. I only have 2wd '05 Chevy Malibu and I am not too excited about driving on rough dirt roads. I was wondering if anyone could tell me which one of those two trail heads would be easier to reach by a regular passanger car. For reference - I did drive my car to Pikes Peaks' Crags trail head but that was about as bumpy as I am willing to go :)

thanks a lot !!

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Re: North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Postby joeambrosia » Sun Aug 23, 2009 9:25 pm

The road to my Elbert is fairly smooth, there's just one big pothole to watch for, and it's big enough to see :)... The road to Democrat is fairly bumpy and lots of potholes. The views from Elbert are amazing. I can't say for Democrat as it was cloudy the day I summited :(
Good luck and have fun!

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Re: North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Postby randalmartin » Sun Aug 23, 2009 10:10 pm

Either one is completely doable in a passenger car. However, the Elbert hike is significantly more effort than Democrat/Lincoln. Not sure the shape/age of your dad but would suggest Quandary over Elbert for something reasonably mild and easier on the legs than Elbert. Quandary also alleviates any concern about the road to the TH.

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Re: North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Postby Jim Davies » Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:28 am

The Kite Lake road is bumpier than Crags, but still doable in any vehicle if you're careful around the potholes. The road between the Halfmoon and North Halfmoon trailheads will probably be too rough for you, although up to Halfmoon it's generally pretty good (comparable to Crags).
Some people are afraid of heights. Not me, I'm afraid of white blood cells.

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Re: North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Postby gulo » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:09 am

Thanks for you replies ! I might actually consider Quandary since it has very easy road access and it's also an easier hike. Though from what I understand it will be probably very crowded.

Thanks again!

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Re: North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Postby sundevilmarsh » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:23 am

I just took a Honda Civic to the N. Elbert TH last week. Simple drive. Same with Quandary. The road to Kite Lake, especially near the lake, is rougher and you'll need to maneuver around some obstacles. As previously stated, Elbert is a bit longer, but it is the top of the Rockies. For really great views how about Huron? It's a simple walk up the 4WD road to the trailhead and similar to Elbert in length. If you go through Leadville, a slice of pie (about a dozen choices) at the Golden Burro is a nice reward for your climb.

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Re: North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Postby gulo » Sun Sep 06, 2009 8:04 pm

So we ended up doing Mt.Elbert yesterday. The drive to TH was a bit bumpy but definitely doable in regular 2wd passanger car. It took me and my dad 7 hours up and down the mountain (including breaks). Finally I got my first 14er under my belt, thanks everyone for their comments !

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Re: North Elbert or Kite Lake in Chevy Malibu?

Postby TerryLiv » Tue Sep 15, 2009 4:30 pm

Jim Davies wrote:The Kite Lake road is bumpier than Crags, but still doable in any vehicle if you're careful around the potholes. The road between the Halfmoon and North Halfmoon trailheads will probably be too rough for you, although up to Halfmoon it's generally pretty good (comparable to Crags).


In my opinion, you are the master of understatement regarding the North Halfmoon Trailhead road.

Terry

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