Colorado 14ers: El Diente Peak, Wilson Peak and Mount Wilson

These challenging routes run through a land of rugged spires, swift streams, snowy gullies, and golden aspen stands. Experts: Connect the knife-edged ridge between Mount Wilson and El Diente.
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These challenging routes run through a land of rugged spires, swift streams, snowy gullies, and golden aspen stands. Experts: Connect the knife-edged ridge between Mount Wilson and El Diente.

-Mount Wilson and El Diente Peak mapped by Lisa Heckel

Trail Facts

  • Distance: 38.4

Waypoints

Navajo Basin Trailhead

Location: 37.8032684326172, -108.063751220703

©Lisa Heckel

Lizard Head Wilderness

Location: 37.8085632324219, -108.063514709473

©Lisa Heckel

Bridge over creek crossing

Location: 37.8148040771484, -108.062454223633

©Lisa Heckel

Navajo Lake

Location: 37.8477516174316, -108.028564453125

Climbing boulders to reach the ridge

Location: 37.847282409668, -107.992668151855

©Lisa Heckel

Climbing up to Mount Wilson's summit

Location: 37.8398666381836, -107.991371154785

©Lisa Heckel

Looking down on the crux from Mount Wilson's summit

Location: 37.8391609191894, -107.991729736328

©Lisa Heckel

MTW001

Location: 37.803150177002, -108.063865661621

From parking area, head N on dirt trail cut through evergreen and aspen forests

MTW002

Location: 37.8083992004394, -108.063400268555

Enter the Lizard Head Wilderness; continue N on trail lined with dainty wildflowers

MTW003

Location: 37.8149185180664, -108.062568664551

Cross over healthy creek on a well-maintained, wooden bridge; forested trail winds to the NE

MTW004

Location: 37.8301048278809, -108.045989990234

Bear L @ Y to reach Mt. Wilson and Wilson Peak. To climb El Diente's S slopes, bear R @ Y

MTW005

Location: 37.8473892211914, -108.036598205566

Stay straight @ signed 3-way to reach Navajo Lake; trail to Woods Lake enters from the L

MTW006

Location: 37.847469329834, -108.028503417969

Walk around the N banks of Navajo Lake's glassy waters; iron-stained slopes rise abrubtly to the N and S

MTW007

Location: 37.8498611450195, -107.996002197266

To climb Mt. Wilson, turn R, leaving trail; hike SE across rocks to reach the rounded ridge. To climb Wilson Peak, keep L on trail and begin NE ascent

MTW008

Location: 37.8472518920898, -107.992500305176

Climb S along ridge that borders a permanent snowfield to the E

MTW009

Location: 37.8441581726074, -107.991401672363

Continue S skirting the edge of snowfields

MTW010

Location: 37.8416137695312, -107.990455627441

Leave the shoulder, heading SW; a stiff climb up steep, talus slopes awaits

MTW011

Location: 37.839168548584, -107.99169921875

Mt. Wilson (14,246 ft.): Serrated ridgelines and untouched alpine landscapes engulf Mt. Wilson's narrow, rocky summit; retrace route

MTW012

Location: 37.8308067321777, -108.043312072754

Follow Kilpacker Basin Trail as it curves to the S

MTW013

Location: 37.8210334777832, -108.042381286621

Bear L @ Y; head E on spur trail into Kilpacker Basin, following Kilpacker Creek

MTW014

Location: 37.8196563720703, -108.033447265625

Cross Kilpacker Creek as trail swings to the NE and cuts through grassy meadows

MTW015

Location: 37.8284339904785, -108.023460388184

Continue NE; navigate scree slopes that greet you above treeline

MTW016

Location: 37.8346786499023, -108.013168334961

Head E over massive scree-filled slopes

MTW017

Location: 37.8341636657715, -108.002914428711

Cut N up steep scree toward ridge connecting El Diente and Mt. Wilson

MTW018

Location: 37.8392715454102, -108.005302429199

El Diente Peak (14,159 ft.): Aerial views of rugged San Juan landscapes fade into the distance; look to the E for Mt. Wilson's rocky summit.

MTW019

Location: 37.8602104187012, -107.984588623047

Wilson Peak (14,017 ft.)