Mount Elbert South Trail Head

HARD 70 reviews

Mount Elbert South Trail Head is a 9.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Twin Lakes, Colorado 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 best used from June until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
9.8 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
4051 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

camping

hiking

rock climbing

forest

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

With an elevation of 14,400 feet, Mount Elbert is the highest point in the state of Colorado and the second highest summit in the contiguous United States after Mount Whitney.

1 month ago

this trail is the old trail. it closed summer 2017. visit 14ers.com.for the new trail.

2 months ago

I made it to the top today 11-5-17, it was really windy above tree line, I used micro spikes, gaiters, and trecking poles and had no problems. I would recommend a face mask, the wind and snow gave me an ice beard. I parked about 1/2 mile up the 4x4 road, started at 7:30am made it to the top at 11:30am and back to my truck at 3:45pm. The trail was easy to follow all the way to the top, below tree line there was about 1-2 inches, above the tree line on average it was ankle deep, some spots were wind swept clean other spots were mid shin drifts.

hiking
3 months ago

October 7, 2017 | need four wheel drive to get to trail head - we had to park about .5 mi from trailhead due to a large rock and decent amount of water on road. Trail was snow covered most of the way up with beautiful views. saw some elk and coyote. definitely harder to navigate the slush on the way down. Wind was too strong to summit but made it to about 13,500 ft in trail runners. Started at 9ish and turned back at 12ish. Can’t wait to try with snow shoes or next summer!

hiking
4 months ago

Attention all hikers! The trail on this app is not up to date. There as been a new sustainable trail constructed for the lower portion of this trail, which is located about 400ft down the Colorado trail from where the existing use to be. Please read and fallow the sign that says the restoration is in progress. More signs are on the way and will be made more clear. But DO NOT fallow the route that is listed for this app at least until updates can be made.

hiking
4 months ago

Anthony is correct. Two miles up from the trailhead on County Road 24 you will find the old section of trail decommissioned with restoration in progress. This is clearly marked. Checks are installed (not built for hiking safety, but to hold water and soil) and revegetation is in progress. Proceed to the new section. It is complete and offers a more stable corridor.

hiking
4 months ago

There is a new trail that was just built. The map on this site is incorrect and needs to be updated. The new trail is very gradual and easy to find. Please don't walk on the old trail. It is unsafe and decommissioned.

hiking
4 months ago

Great hike, but surely not for the beginners. They indicate the first 2 miles could be done by 4WD - they really mean 4WD (not SUV)! Fantastic views with aspens turning to yellow. Although there were no clouds part of the trail is open and very windy. The trail is not trafficked heavily (certainly less than the north trail).

hiking
4 months ago

Tough but well worth it

hiking
4 months ago

Awesome hike! Some steady inclines but worth the views!

4 months ago

Mentally and physically demanding, but overall a great hike.

5 months ago

Went with my friend from Nashville and carried his backpack up the summit. Long trail, cool views of twin lakes

5 months ago

Great climb. Beautiful views. Take your bug spray:)

hiking
7 months ago

Had a blast. Quads are spent.

7 months ago

Was a great hike yesterday. Last 2 miles still covered in snow but manageable with snow poles and remaining in previous tracks. Heading out and back early really makes the difference. Nearing the summit, since it's all snow covered, the trail is quite direct and upward.

The worst part was heading back down when the snow was as melting. You'd sink down into the snow which could be to waist deep at points. I brought snowshoes, but just roughed it out through these sections, really an amazing hole for early morning .

hiking
7 months ago

Fantastic hike! Great views, and challenging without being too difficult. Great for new 14er-ers. I would say Mt. Massive is the best hike in the area, but this is still amazing!

9 months ago

Tough trail if you are new to hiking maybe, but one of my absolute favorites. Twin lakes has great fishing and camping and I would highly recommend this if you are able

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

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

hiking
Monday, June 20, 2016

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!

hiking
Wednesday, October 21, 2015

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
Thursday, October 15, 2015

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

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