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Backpacker Magazine – May 2010

Colorado Trail: Top Peaks

The top peaks for every type of hiker.

by: Kristy Holland, maps by Andrew Matranga

The Colorado Trail. (Andrew Matranga)
The Colorado Trail. (Andrew Matranga)
Vestal and Arrow peaks. (Todd Caudle)
Vestal and Arrow peaks. (Todd Caudle)
San Luis Peak. (Todd Caudle)
San Luis Peak. (Todd Caudle)

Least Visited (Square)
1) Baldy Cinco (13,373 feet)
“There are so many higher peaks in Colorado that Baldy Cinco doesn’t get attention,” says Dan Bereck, who has topped all 637 of the state’s Thirteeners. “And it’s a view-packed climb.” Head off-trail 7.9 miles west of San Luis Pass to follow the grassy Continental Divide two miles to the summit. Drop south to reconnect to the CT for the return.

2) Snowdon Peak (13,074 feet)
Durango rock snobs lament Snowdon’s wide, sloping shoulders. They aren’t as “aesthetic” as other routes. Oh well: more solitude for the rest of us. From  Andrews Lake trailhead, take Crater Lake Trail .5 mile to a class 2 scramble to the northern saddle. Follow the talus-covered ridge .5 mile to the summit.

3) Little Scraggy Peak (9,180 feet)
Believe in sweat equity? You’ll love the bushwhack to this summit—and the pride in ownership you’ll feel standing alone on the summit’s pink granite perches. Follow the Little Scraggy Trail west of Pine Valley Road, just south of Buffalo Creek, then cut south to weave to the summit.

4. Sliderock Ridge (12,251 feet)
5. West Needle Mountain
(13,061 feet)
6. Electric Peak (13,284 feet)
7. Carson Peak
(13,661 feet)
8. Windy Peak
(11,886 feet)
9. V10
(13,475 feet)
10. Diorite Peak (12,697 feet)

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