Mount Elbert South Trail Head

HARD 27 reviews

Mount Elbert South Trail Head is a 22.6 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Twin Lakes, CO that features a river and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking, rock climbing, and camping and is accessible from June until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

22.6 miles 9615 feet Out & Back

dogs on leash

camping

hiking

rock climbing

forest

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

Colorado Highpoint Mount Elbert: north trail is a 9 mile out and back trail located near Granite, Colorado that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for camping, hiking & rock climbing and is accessible from June until October.

3 months ago

Never ending false peaks with a good amount of snow year around for the last mile or so.

hiking
5 months ago

Prepare for a few false summits. While technically easy, it was very steep most of the way and long and exhausting. BUT always worth it!

11 months ago

hiking
1 year ago

This is an interesting hike. Six friends and I decided to spend the night near the summit so we packed up around 30 pounds of gear each and it took us 3 hours to summit in time for sunset. We checked the weather, saw it was all clear and set up camp about 100 yards from the summit. We cooked our meal under the most beautiful stars and went to sleep on to of the world. An hour after we went to sleep a lightning storm rolled in. So we pack up everything FAST with the wind whipping everything around, rain pelting us and lightning striking all around. Holy cats was that a good adrenaline high. So we scramble down the trail with just our headlamps. The rain is pelting us and wind is still going strong. We get to the treeline in what seemed like an age and look up to see a sweet lightning show. We decided to just go all the way down and march back to our basecamp at Halfmoon Creek. Got to camp at 3 and slept to 8. I'll remember that hike for the rest of my life.

birding
1 year ago

Difficult last mile but otherwise great hike! Difficult due to loose rock and steep trail. Great views. Worth it.

hiking
1 year ago

Not the most exciting 14er. But its the highest

cross country skiing
1 year ago

Took the easiest trail - kids made it to the top before us. Rain/hail got us off the mountain. Great day

hiking
1 year ago

Just did this yesterday. I went with a group of 5 girls and we vary in fitness from long distance runners to the occasional exerciser that's never trained for a 14er. We started at 4:15am. The first 1.5 hours needed a flashlight and we saw only 2 others on the trail. We finished around 2pm. This was with LOTS of breaks and a slow to steady pace. There are 2 false summits so just be aware of this! Starting from the actual trailhead, we calculated the distance to be more around 11 miles. Many estimates start a little further in where the colorado trail "officially" starts and so does not take the first bit into account. It was a fun fourteener and despite being the highest, was relatively easy compared to the others I've done.

hiking
1 year ago

Just finished this hike. The views are mind blowing. The snow at the top is heavy and hard to power through so we took it easy and enjoyed this amazing peak.

snowshoeing
1 year ago

Completed the South Trail, it's a hike and since the snow is melting it took us a total of around hours, with stops for breaks and meals. This view is incredible, so beautiful. Wish their was a summit sign but while your up their just enjoy the views.

hiking
2 years ago

I took the southern most trail called the Black Cloud Trail. It was one of the most beautiful trails I have ever hiked. The wildflowers, aspen groves, waterfalls, views, and solitude made this a great hike. It was a Saturday but I only encountered 2 people on the way up. I took the South Elbert trail down, but it is no comparison to Black Cloud. Once above treeline, the approach to Mt Elbert's summit is across a ridge line, with incredible views. I highly recommend the Black Cloud trail.

hiking
2 years ago

Pretty easy to start till you get out of the tree line. Then becomes a little more difficult. All and all not to bad though. One of the easier 14ers to do and the highest.

hiking
3 years ago

Completed on Saturday 8/24/2013. Hard trail with lots of rocks and altitude. Great to make it to the top and back down.

hiking
3 years ago

Went 3 years ago in early August and this year in June. Mostly dirt trails until the very top. Challenging but fun hike with an amazing view. Camp at tree line to get an incredible sight of the sunrise come morning.

hiking
3 years ago

Took the Black Cloud Trail up as a less populated alternative and only came across one other hiker on the trail. Surprisingly the snow fields are not deep and easy to navigate. Beautiful views, tough haul to the top but well worth the effort. Highly recommend.

hiking
3 years ago

Great Hike! Plan to start early, get plenty of sleep. A LOT of exposure once you are out of tree line.

hiking
3 years ago

Nice hike, especially once you get above tree line. Not as scenic as Mt. Massive. Make sure to pack water as there's no streams or snow runoff for refills. There is a pond near the top that is off the trail a ways. I ended up using that as I hadn't had any water for a long time. It's pretty muddy and hard to get down so wouldn't recommend unless you have too. Obviously iodine tablets are needed. I now have a purifier which would have helped.

hiking
4 years ago

Not to tough, but it's well worth it because the views and the fact it so high.

hiking
4 years ago

Just finished peaking the 14'er known as Mount Elbert. My wife and I got started later than we anticipated, but 7:30 am is not a bad starting time. Breakfast is important part of the day as this hike requires extreme stamina. The morning was a bit brisk, but well received as we are from Arizona. By 9:30 am we reached the tree line, and headed up the open faced mountain. The wind was extreme this morning. I calculate it was 40 - 50 mph at times, and created a much cooler hike. We had brought plenty of gear, as I believe in the Boy Scout motto, "Be Prepared". We may have had to turn back without the appropriate clothing...... Thanks Columbia and Mountain Hardware. We reached the summit at 11:30 am, and the wind never let up. The clouds were starting to roll in, so we took our pictures, proteined up, and headed back down. If you thought going up was a challenge, the hike down was very challenging on our knees. We finished the hike at approximately 3:45 pm. We returned to Arizona, with this mountain added to our "bucket list". We are extremely sore today, but that is an indication of our success!

hiking
4 years ago

Best to get on the trail early as it clouds up most afternoons. Lightning has chased me off three times. Never made it to the summit.