Mt. Elbert is Colorado’s tallest mountain, 14,433′ above sea level. Did you know it’s also the second-highest in the continental United States?
From Leadville, it’s a pretty, symmetrical peak pointing to a perfect V. The Twin Lakes view shows its long, rocky ridge. Climb it from either side, and you’ll discover pine and aspen forests, open tundra with rocks and wildflowers, and unblocked views of peak after peak, deep into the wilderness of central Colorado.
To experience Mt. Elbert in a less-airy fashion, hike or mountain bike the Colorado Trail across its lower reaches to find thick aspen groves and secluded beaver ponds. Wander the Upper Arkansas Valley between Leadville and Twin Lakes with your camera in hand. Stay on its flanks in a cabin, lodge, or campground near Twin Lakes. Or simply float on the lake and gaze up at the tip-top of Colorado.
Climb Mt. Elbert
Climbing Mt. Elbert means a great workout, stunning views, and a chance to breathe fresh, rarified air. It’s a non-technical climb, but no 14er is easy. Please read and heed the safety and comfort tips below, and study the routes below for a successful climb.
Safety and Comfort
To make you more comfortable and increase your chances for a successful summit, spend the night before in Leadville or Twin Lakes to acclimatize. Spend the night after so that you can rest and enjoy the scenic beauty the area has to offer, plus raise a well-deserved glass in the nation’s highest city.
Don’t forget to check the latest weather forecasts, peak conditions, trailhead status, and important safety information before hitting the trail. Make sure you have essential gear for your climb. Plan to start early, keep an eye on the weather, and be back to treeline ahead of afternoon storms. Once you’re prepped for your climb, get ready to see the world from on high!