Mounts Democrat, Cameron, Lincoln, and Bross Trail

HARD 457 reviews
#92 of 170 trails in

Mounts Democrat, Cameron, Lincoln, and Bross Trail is a 7.6 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Alma, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and snowboarding and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
7.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
3,412 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dog friendly

hiking

forest

lake

views

wild flowers

rocky

scramble

snow

private property

The trail is accessible year round through the Kite Lake Trailhead. The road near the top is treacherous, but easy enough to park a half mile down the road before that part and hike.

hiking
4 days ago

Fucking awesome hike; this is just a phenomenal experience. Democrat would be a great beginner 14er. Lincoln was really haunting. It snowed a fair amount (8/16/18), so be prepared with layers, gloves, a buff, etc. poles would’ve been helpful for the descent.

4 days ago

Easily accessible trail. You start above treeline so there isn't a long trek before you start going up. Climb Bross first, there is a lot of loose rock and it is much easier to go up than down. Start early and bring some warmer clothes for up on top.

5 days ago

I started at 6:30 up bross. It was slippery rock going up so I couldnI’ll imagine it going down. I’m pretty happy with going that way. You get a nice “break” going to Lincoln and then Cameron. Then a buttkicker for Democrat. Buttkicker either way ! Amazing views. We even got some snow flurries up there. Finished the rocky trail at 1:30pm

7 days ago

it was an amazing hike. lots of people are suggesting to srart going up from bross. I personnally wouldnot reccomend. I am beginner hiker and this was my 5th fourtener. Starting from bross you will loose all the energy you got an you may not be able to do all 4. Yes going down on bross is tough due to steep slope and loose rocks all the way down.

7 days ago

I loved this hike! Started with Democrat around 6:45am, then went to Cameron, Lincoln, and finished with Bross, back to the car about 6 hours later. My dad and I were worried after reading reviews about the descent down Bross, and made a game time decision to go ahead and go for it. In my opinion, it wasn’t as bad as a lot of people describe- definitely lots of loose rocks and prepare to slide a lot- but it wasn’t dangerous or life-threatening in terms of sending you off the mountain. I had my heart set on bagging all 4 peaks so for me doing Bross was worth the tough descent. My dad thinks maybe he would have just skipped Bross altogether. The rest of it we absolutely loved. Definitely the toughest hike up Democrat so I’m glad we got that out of the way first. My favorite view was on top of Lincoln.

hiking
9 days ago

Rocked out this hike yesterday 8/11. Awesome hike! Highly recommend camping at trailhead the night before. Actual parking lot was already full by 10pm! If you dont camp you still will want to get there as early as possible, Getting stuck parking down the road will just add miles to your already tough hike! Took our jetta almost all the way to the trailhead but theres one large bump that our car could not clear so we stopped and camped there. only a couple hundred feet from the parking lot. Hit the trail at 445am done at 1215p with breaks and summit stops. I believe doing Democrat first is by far the way to go. Not only do I think going up bross in the dark would be terrible. Having to go up Democrat last would be a tough climb after bagging the other 3. Also another reason would be that by the time u would get to the democrat climb it will be packed. By 10am there looked like there was a line all the way up democrat. Going down bross was def tough and took a lot of concentration watching where you step and keeping balance. Poles for sure a must. Not sure what my fav was. Being almost to the top of democrat for sunrise was amazing, but being atop bross and being able to see all of what you just did was awesome too! Bross' summit is huge but lincoln and democrat's a lot smaller. Took our dog whose used to hiking and is a larger dog. She was very tired at the end and I got a little worried about her paws coming down bross as it is very lose rock but she made it down without any cuts and passed out the whole way home.
Overall amazing hike. Very fulfilling finishing all 4.

9 days ago

- Did these four yesterday. great hike with amazing views from each summit. There is a lot of small rocks and loose slag, especially on Bross and Democrat. Like other climbers i would highly recommend starting with Bross. It is a pretty good climb up and around to the summit but it's a good warm-up for the other three and the descent of Bross is much harder on the knees of you do it last. Mt. Democrat is probably the steepest climb but its worth it when you get to the top. Do yourself and your knees a favor and please invest in poles. You won't regret it, especially the descent of Democrat.

hiking
15 days ago

We ran out of time and only ended up doing Democrat, Cameron and Lincoln. It was a really great, but challenging hike. My biggest complaint was that Democrat was super crowded. We started around 7:30, so that's partially our fault. If this bothers you though, you may want to consider doing Bross first or get there around 6. Democrat was much more challenging than Cameron and Lincoln. So, if you have the time, it is worth doing 3 if not all 4. In my opinion, I would not want to do the first part of the hike again (not that it's hard, it's just I don't like repeating), so it's better to get at least 3 out of the way rather than coming back to cross those off. Sort of one of those if you've gone this far, why not keep going situations.

hiking
16 days ago

This was my very first 14ner and only did Democrat, but had a great workout! I didn't have issue with illness but air got thinner and thinner. It was such a great accomplishment to get one done, however, 7.6 miles for the whole loop is impossible for me to think since Democrat itself was 4.2 miles. I will prepare to go early next time to get all 4 done!

hiking
20 days ago

Did Democrat first and bross last, was hard going down but not impossible. Got out early as it does get crowded, once past Democrat only saw a handful of people. Very cool and great views from all peaks!

hiking
23 days ago

This series of 14ers were my first ever! It was a fairly difficult hike, but worth the views. The most unpleasant and difficult part was going down Mt. Bross. It’s extremely steep and there’s a lot of loose gravel that makes it slippery. A huge part of the decent involves sliding down on your behind to make it down safely. Not even poles are helpful for a majority of the decent. I’d hike all of them again, but I’d probably turn back around after reaching the summit of Mt. Bross because of how hard it is to decent from there by completing the loop.

hiking
25 days ago

This was awesome all the way up until the descent from Bross. We started about 6:30 and the lot was already full but made good time up Democrat and across Cameron and Lincoln. Getting up Bross was fine but coming down we had to scoot on our butts the whole way and it took close to 1.5 hours. Amazing hike overall. So fun and definitely a challenge. Still made it down by 12:30 and luckily for us the weather was fine.

25 days ago

Go up mt Bross instead of down-it was very treacherous and steep, I can't imagine going down that way after hiking all day! My favorite views on the hike were from Mt. Lincoln

hiking
25 days ago

For my first 14er, this was a huge gift! 4 in one day! It took just over 6hrs with about a 40min lunch on Cameron and several breaks getting to Lincoln. Went to Democrat first and then doubled back to go from Cameron to Lincoln and then finishing at Bross. Only issue is that it’s completely exposed...but that could also be considered a benefit as you really can’t get too lost on the loop. In all a very tough test but, thankfully, since I was in halfway decent conditioning, it was do-able. Still, I contemplated quitting before each of the 3 peaks before the final at Bross. Democrat was a bear and it felt like forever to get to Cameron and Lincoln.

Definitely bring sunscreen, pants and jacket as once you crest a few places the temp plummets. Bring lots of water, some snacks or even a sandwich. You’re gonna burn some calories today!! Go for this! It’s a big morale booster!!

hiking
28 days ago

loved it! took the internet's advice ad did it backwards. Bross, Lincoln, Cameron, then Democrat. 8 hours car to car including long summit breaks. Democrat was a struggle in the hot sun last but way easier to go down on the knees than the tallus on Bross.

hiking
28 days ago

Started at 4:50 am, just as the sun was providing enough light to not need headlamps. Decided to go up Bross first which, in my opinion, was the ideal approach. Why Bross first? Going up scree and rock slides on Bross are not nearly as bad as coming down, from what I've read and now experienced. While Bross was a challenge, doing that while fresh first thing gets you up to good elevation very fast. From Bross to Lincoln it's a walk in the park. From Lincoln to Cameron, same thing. Very easy. You get a fairly easy descent from Cameron and then finish off with the tough climb up Democrat. Certainly the ascent of Democrat was the hardest aspect of this route, but the views are the best on Democrat & Lincoln. I'd hate to finish this hike with the drab view from the top of Bross, personally.

Did this loop with my 12 year old son and he beat me to the top on each peak.

hiking
29 days ago

So wonderful. Started at 6:25 and headed toward Bross first. I was above the clouds for the first two hours, amazing views all morning, no smoke or haze, and surprisingly it WAS NOT very windy on any of the 4 peaks. Back to the Jeep a few min after 12:00 and caught a cutthroat in Kite Lake on a dry fly before beating the rain out of the valley. Monday was a nice day for this hike, pretty quiet on the trail. Maybe 35 hikers spread out over the distance today. I was even alone on 3 of the 4 peaks.

hiking
30 days ago

left the parking lot at 3:30, got to peak of democrat at sunrise, which is the most incredible start to a day. Grateful to have done Democrat in the dark because it would've been the hardest to do if I could see it lol. Cameron was nice other than all the false peaks lol, and then looking at Lincoln from cameron looked the most intimidating but ended up being the easiest and funnest and most beautiful of the day. Went over to Bross and it was a breeze compared to the rest of the day, UNTIL you go down. When you get to a giant rock slide, KEEP GOING FORWARD!!! there is an easier way down but about 90% of us didn't realize until the bottom. Going down that was death.

Now that I've done all 4, I would 100% go again, BUT I would cut out Bross because I am never going down that again.

Also, a lot of reviews say to start with Bross and end with Democrat but I would never agree with that. I think that going up the rock slide in the dark would've been a million times harder than it already was, and plus if I had to end on Democrat I would've cried going up and turned around lol so please please start with Democrat.

Overall, they were my first 14ers and I wouldn't have traded the views for anything. The sunrise at democrat was so worth waking up at 2:25..hope this review helps anyone that is considering going.

30 days ago

This hike was super fun! I’ve done a few 14ers, this was definitely challenging but if you hike regularly it’s absolutely doable.

100% do Democrat first. Going down Bross is rocky and difficult but going up would be equally as challenging and starting with Democrat is the way to go in terms of pace. It would be hard to start with Bross and end having to go up Democrat because it’s a challenging peak. Additionally going up Bross while it’s still dark out in the morning would be REALLY hard.

Also start early! Started at 4:45 and finished at 11. It takes a good amount of time and you don’t want to get stuck in an afternoon storm.

Hope this helps!

hiking
1 month ago

Stunning views, great workout, alien landscape and very windy in spots - was most blustery on Democrat and on the way up to Cameron. The wind forgot to check forecast of 10-15 mph breeze.

Poles not only help you with balance when the wind howls, they come in handy descending from Bross. Just take it slow coming down.

Parking? We took the last spot in the lot at 6:45 am Wednesday. No big deal, lots of openings on the road approaching the parking lot. There is a fee to park.

We saw hikers in tennis shoes. Hiking boots are a must! Coming down Democrat to saddle, trail gets sketchy but we stayed on it, more or less. Have fun, stay safe!

1 month ago

Amazing Hike!!! I recommend camping at kite lake the night before, watched a lighting storm ten miles out from my tent, more beautiful then the 4th of july. woke up in the night to see every star in the galexy, and in the morning just as I peaked Bross i met the sun and it gave me the warmest embrace. Best day hike ever! I got it done in just over 5 hrs but I was moving. Amazing views all around and great hike for cardio training as you cross the peaks. I started with Bross and glad I did, loose sharp rock and steep at spots. Democrat last isn't that bad especially after your lungs have adjusted doing the other 3, I probably went up Democrat at a faster pace then Bross. No matter the route, great people on the trail with beautiful views. I highly recommend!

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked this last Sunday. We were trying to avoid the storms that were slated to set in around 11am, so arrived at the Kite Lake trailhead around 4pm Saturday. We had no trouble finding a campsite, and it's a truly lovely spot to spend the evening stargazing.

We decided to take the clockwise route so we could catch the sunrise from Mt. Democrat. We left the trailhead at 3:30am, and made it to the summit of Democrat around 5:30. No trouble finding the trail with headlamps on high power, even as you get onto Democrat proper, which is scree marked with cairns. The sunrise was fantastic - everything we hoped for. Our second-favorite summit of the day.

The walk from Democrat to Cameron is a slog. Very rocky and not very scenic. Not much to see from Cameron, so we quickly continued on to Lincoln, which we made around 8am. This was my favorite peak - a fun climb and fabulous views. Not as exhausting as it looks, either!

Finally, we turned our attention to Bross, which seems miles away and kind of tall from the trail near Lincoln. Some nice downhill, then some gentle uphill and you're pretty much there. Not the most scenic summit, but savor the moment if you're going clockwise because the descent of Bross to the Kite Lake Trailhead is pretty terrible. Piles of loose, slippery scree everywhere, and the trail is not always obvious. We accidentally turned left too soon where the trail steeply descends from the summit into a valley to rejoin the main trail and ended up having to slide down a near-vertical wash for about 150 feet. Not fun! The descent seems to take an eternity, with slippery scree the entire way. By the end I was cursing Mt. Bross big time. We made it back to the trailhead a little after 10am. In retrospect I think it's probably wise to go counter-clockwise (safety first).

This hike should be do-able by anyone who is fit and acclimated (even the bad descent of Bross). Just be careful to avoid slipping and twisting an ankle! The place is full of flowers this time of year, and this set of peaks is relatively thinly trafficked - we had time alone on each of the 4 summits. Would definitely recommend this hike - and plan to do it again myself (just in the other direction next time...)!

hiking
1 month ago

Great way to bag 3 (maybe 4?) 14ers. I would definitely go Bross first, the trail was steep and very loose, I couldn’t imagine coming down it. Overall really great hike with awesome views. Started at 6:15 and finished at 1:00 with time spent on all peaks. Lot was full and road parking was filling up when we arrived so get there early.

1 month ago

did Democrat Cameron Lincoln bross and that order glad I did accept the trail coming down off bross is very narrow and all loose gravel not my favorite part of the trail and a little sketchy at times I would recommend going back over Cameron after summiting Bross for an easier descent back to the trailhead

hiking
1 month ago

Had a great time going solo on the DeCaLiBron yesterday. I would definitely recommend going up Democrat and down Bross- also bring trekking poles for the way down Bross to make falling less likely. Took me 6 and a half hours round-trip including stops at the summit and talking to a lot of people along the trail. So fun to hike above treeline too! Would definitely recommend.

hiking
1 month ago

We did the loop by going up Bross and started at 5:30am. We didn’t go to the peak of Bross, since it’s off limits. Most people did, though. I realize it’s hard to pass up, but it would be a bummer if that keeps the park service from securing official access.

Lincoln was our fave of the four, as it was less crowded and pretty easy once we were up Bross. It was also the only one where I could find a geologic marker.

Cameron was really nice, since it is so spacious. We actually encountered a group who took a full size cooler up and had taken games to play. I certainly hope Cameron gets official recognition at some point. If you are hiking up from Democrat, I would thiGoing down the other side of Cameron was a bummer knowing we were going to have to climb back up to Democrat.

All in all, awesome hike! Worth the work

hiking
1 month ago

The road up to Kite Lake was better than expected with some rutted out spots (it was dry on 7/14). I got to the Trailhead at about 8am and had to park along the road about 0.5 miles from the parking lot, paid the $3 fee and began the hike from Kite Lake to Democrat at around 8:40am. The trail was fairly busy, primarily at the beginning as many people decided to only summit Mt. Democrat, so the crowd died down by the time I summited Cameron. The stretch from the top of Democrat to the top of Cameron was the most challenging for me, but it was smooth sailing to Lincoln and Bross. The top of Bross is private property, but those who choose to summit and loop back to the parking lot should be aware that the “trail” down is loose talus and can be very dangerous. Overall, the hike was a blast! I’d say it’s a moderate hike since it begins above tree line with relatively low mileage, especially for the fit and acclimated.

hiking
1 month ago

Loved!!!

1 month ago

Got to the trailhead at 6:30 am and there was a line of cars in front and behind me. We had to park on the street because parking was already full by the time we got there.

This was my first 14er(s) and I ended at 12:30 pm, spending time at each summit. I’m usually a pretty quick hiker, but I had to take this super slow and allow for multiple stops. This may be known as a good one for first timers, but don’t forget that it is a workout. I was surprised with how much my legs were hurting.

I went up democrat first and would recommend doing that, unless you bring a dog. Going down Bross was extremely challenging because it’s almost straight down/loose rock and very hard on the knees (don’t forget your poles like I did). Overall, the views are beyond worth it and to get 4 done in one day - it’s an amazing feeling.

1 month ago

Started with Democrat and descended down Bross. If you save Democrat for last you will be very tired climbing up to the summit. Going down Bross was rough on the knees. It will be challenging no matter what, just bring sunscreen, snacks, and water. We started at 6:30 and ended at 3:30.

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