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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Pikes Peak from Crags CG TH, CO

no permit
113 8 0
Guide 8 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List CO > South Central
3 of 5 by 2
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Difficulty 4 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance Round Trip 13.8 miles
Trailhead Elevation 9,990 feet
Elevation Gain 4,120 feet
Accumulated Gain 4,535 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 6-10 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 36.48
Interest Perennial Creek & Peak
Backpack Possible - Not Popular
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
9  2016-10-28 MtnBart01
9  2015-09-03 BobP
12  2015-09-03 fricknaley
24  2015-08-06
PikesPeak Pumpkin loop
30  2015-07-13 MtnBart01
29  2013-10-07 MtnBart01
Author MtnBart01
author avatar Guides 3
Routes 24
Photos 3,484
Trips 883 map ( 5,489 miles )
Age 50 Male Gender
Location Chipita Park, Co
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Jul, Aug, Jun, Sep → 7 AM
Seasons   Spring to Autumn
Sun  5:43am - 6:06pm
Official Route
0 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
The other route
by MtnBart01

Likely In-Season!
This is the alternative and IMO more scenic route to the top of Pikes Peak. It is also, less crowded, shorter with less elevation gain and more doable as a day hike for most people. There is the Crags Campground and numerous campsites in the area.

Particularly during monsoon season it is highly recommended to be down to the treeline before noon to avoid lightning strikes from afternoon thunderstorms. There have been fatalities on Pikes Peak and it is a hotbed in comparison to other areas of Colorado for lightning strikes.

There is a creek at the lower part of the hike that runs all year round and of course the drinking fountains at the top for a midpoint refill. :) My dog and I did the round trip on 80 ounces between us. It was 40 at the top and 70 at the trail head in the afternoon so plan accordingly.

The trail head starts just beyond the Rocky Mountain Mennonite Camp. Crossing the stream and following it through the forest. The only navigation necessary during this hike other than following cairns a the boulder field at the top is following the sign for Devil's Playground and crossing Fourmile Creek on to #664a. This is a little confusing because you are hiking Pikes Peak via the Crags and the sign if you go straight is for the hike up to the Crags which is a rock formation visible along the trail. After crossing the creek the trail becomes rocky and continues through the forest with switchbacks until getting above the treeline. As you climb you will be able to see rock formations to your left and on a clear day get amazing views of the continental divide to the west. After getting above the treeline it is a steep climb up to the Saddle at about 12,700'. At this point there are cairns so large they appear to be grave markers. Probably to be visible in the winter with a snow pack. You can see the trail which goes to the crossing of the highway into the Devil's Playground named according to the sign, for the way the lightning dances from rock to rock during Thunderstorms, which I'm not sure I want to see! The trail follows the highway for a bit which is a bummer, but the views to left (east) of the drop and the reservoirs is amazing! The final assault or last 1000' feet is a boulder field and following cairns. It's kind of like Flatiron at 13000' w/out any vegetation. It was icy in spots with a lot of lose rocks so be forewarned. I can't imagine doing this section with a base of snow. It is easier navigating down than up. As you approach the top there is an army building, but on a clear day the public restaurant, gift shop, Cog railway building is visible. Have fun!

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

This is a moderately difficult hike.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2013-10-08 MtnBart01
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Most recent Triplog Reviews
    Pikes Peak from Crags CG TH
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    wasn't sure what to expect from this one but turned out to be really cool hike and a great route. we switched this hike into a more iffy weather day to ensure better weather on Longs so we were racing storms a lot of the time but it only lightly rained on us for a while on the way down. couldn't spend too much time on the summit because that's where we encountered the worst weather.

    big open views above timber line and the area around devils playground was really cool

    after the rain on the way down it cleared up and was beautiful.

    glad MtnBart01 put this alternate route on HAZ, very cool :app:
    Pikes Peak from Crags CG TH
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Most folks who summit Pikes Peak (something Zebulon never did) will do so by Automobile or the cog train. I did it on foot, by the standard west side route and the Devils Playground. I took no pictures of the hike, and its mostly because of two reasons: 1. Just as things got interesting I was hiking along the busy road and was disgusted with the situation. and 2. I was socked in on the summit for a while with a thunderstorm and had nothing interesting to photograph. I might have gotten a really cool shot or two of the mountain goats I saw, but they ran away as soon as they saw me.
    Pikes was an OK climb, its just not very fun to earn a 14er and then have all the "people" (I'm being nice here) who made it there by a machine come up and talk about how thin the air is. It was annoying, I felt like I was at Disney or some tourist attraction. Plus, when one of the cog trains arrives on top about 200 people swarm out and make a b-line for the snack bar to buy really expensive food that they don't really need anyway. It took what, 5 calories for you to get to the summit and you buy a big thing of french fries to down like water? OK, enough of my superior attitude. Pikes Peak is 14,110' above the mean sea level. After Pikes I would drive past but not climb Longs Peak (a hurricane was making the weather wetter than normal) and then I would head north to Devils Tower and the Black Hills (big mistake as the Sturgis Rally was starting) where I would hike Harney's Peak, the South Dakota high point.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

    To hike
    From Colorado Springs head up Ute Pass on the 24 through Woodland Park to Divide. Turn left on the 67 and look for the Sign that says The Crags 3 1/2 miles just after passing Mueller State Park on your right. Turn left after the sign and follow the road and signs past Rocky Mountain Mennonite retreat. Parking is on your right. Trail head and bathrooms on your left.
    page created by joebartels on Oct 08 2013 9:49 am
    3 pack - loud whistle
    go prepared
    help comment issue

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