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Route #1) San Luis Peak - Northeast Ridge  


Difficulty:  Class 1 
Ski: Intermediate, D4 / R2 / III
Exposure: No exposure in the area. Gentle terrain.
Summit Elev.: 14,014 feet
Trailhead Elev.: 10,500 feet
Elevation Gain: 3,600 feet
RT Length: 13.50 miles
Trailhead: Stewart Creek New Update
Quad. Maps: Log in to view 
Author: BillMiddlebrook
Last Updated: 3/2014
 
Weather Info: NOAA Link
Condition Reports:  View (44 reports) New Reports
Cell Reception?:  View (6 reports) 
County Sheriff: Saguache: 719-655-2544
National Forest:  Gunnison
Wilderness Area:  La Garita
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User Climb Times: View
Campgrounds: View on Google Maps
Restaurants: View on Google Maps
Trip Reports (147)
Ski/Snowboard Trip Reports (14)
14erology
 

TH:  

The directions shown here assume you are coming from the north. If you are coming from the San Luis Valley area, drive north on Colorado 114 to Dome Lakes, turn left onto the "15-GG" road and follow the directions from the 15-GG road:

  • Take U.S. 50 to the junction of Colorado 114 just east of Gunnison. It is approximately 47 miles to the trailhead from this intersection.
  • Turn south onto Colorado 114.
  • Drive about 20 miles and turn right onto the NN-14 road.
  • Drive 6.8 miles to Dome Lakes and turn right onto the 15-GG dirt road (also known as FR 794 when you reach National Forest).
  • The road briefly goes around the lake where there is a small junction. Stay left on the main road.
  • From the start of the 15-GG road, drive 15.7 miles to an intersection where there are signs.
  • Follow the sign for the Stewart Creek trailhead by continuing straight on the 794 road.
  • Drive 4.3 miles to the trailhead.
  • Be alert for the signed trailhead. It used to have a parking area down to the right but that was closed in 2014 and the road was widened for cars to park alongside.
  • Another option is to continue 1/4 mile down the road and park at the Eddiesville trailhead which now has a new outhouse. If you park at Eddiesville, begin your San Luis hike by walking back up the road and turning left onto the start of the Stewart Creek trail.

Route:

Photo #1 and Photo #2 show the view of Stewart Creek from the trailhead. Follow the excellent trail as it parallels Stewart Creek and enters the forest. After 2 miles on the trail, pass an old log building. After 3 miles, cross to the south side of Stewart Creek and later back to the north side. After 4 miles and near 12,000’, leave the trees and reach a large clearing - Photo #3. Continue southwest and west on the trail as it approaches the upper basin - Photo #4, Photo #5 and Photo #6.

Near 12,300’, turn southwest and cut through a large patch of willows to reach the creek. Cross it and continue southeast through more willows and begin climbing the broad slope below the Organ Mountain-San Luis saddle - Photo #6. From creek to the saddle, it’s approximately 0.75 mile and 800’ of elevation gain on mellow terrain - Photo #7, Photo #8 and Photo #9. Swing left near 12,800’, ascend a couple of switchbacks and continue southwest to the 13,100-foot saddle - Photo #10 and Photo #11.

Hike west across the saddle and continue onto the left (south) side of a large point on San Luis’ northeast ridge - Photo #11 and Photo #12. Traverse west toward the crest of the ridge - Photo #13, Photo #14 and Photo #15. Near 13,750’, gain the northeast ridge and cross to the west side - Photo #16 and Photo #17. Follow the trail as it climbs through broken rock, regains the ridge (Photo #18) and climbs to the summit - Photo #19, Photo #20 and Photo #21.

Notes:   

The 15-GG / 794 road is in good shape and can be used by passenger cars in good weather. IMPORTANT: This route enters the La Garita Wilderness area. Wilderness areas have special regulations and restrictions for party size, dispersed camping, campfires, etc. Also, dog owners should read the wilderness information carefully because some wilderness areas prohibit dogs to be off-leash and/or limit how close dogs can be to lakes and streams. If you have questions about the La Garita Wilderness area, please contact a U.S. Forest Service office for the National Forest(s) listed above.

 

Photo #1Photo #2Photo #3Photo #4Photo #5Photo #6Photo #7Photo #8Photo #9Photo #10Photo #11Photo #12Photo #13Photo #14Photo #15Photo #16Photo #17Photo #18Photo #19Photo #20Photo #21

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