Indian Peaks Wilderness, Colorado

September 2005

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Ken Grob and I had a fantastic backpacking trip to the Indian Peaks Wilderness area in Colorado.  The wilderness area is South of Rocky Mountain National Park, and has spectacular mountains with unspoiled drainages in all directions. 

We entered from the West side, backpacking nine miles to Crater lake.  Along the hike there were beautiful lakes, waterfalls, wildflowers, meadows, and hillsides of aspens showing off their fall colors.  Crater lake (10,000 ft.) sits at the base of Lone Eagle Peak, and is surrounded on all sides by mountains, forming a gorgeous cirque.  We spent the night with visions of the vertical rock faces around us.  The next morning we had an early alpine start, hoping to "scramble" to the summit of Lone Eagle Peak (11,900 ft.).  After an lung busting and mild nausea inducing hike up a scree field skirting the North face, we reached a series of ledges and ramps leading up the East side of the mountain.  The final bit of scrambling involved an exposed traverse over the most "knife edged" ridge I've ever had the privilege to balance across.  The actual peak had room for one, and was unbelievably exposed.  After a round of photos, we made the trek back to camp, tore down, and hiked back to the car.  The drive home was through Rocky Mountain Park, which was a nice finish to our long day.


Click on the images for a larger view


Indian Peaks Wilderness



Fall comes early in the mountains


First look at Lone Eagle Peak

Lone Eagle Peak

Lone Eagle Peak

From Monarch lake

Lone Eagle Peak

From Crater lake



Overlooking the summit ridge of Lone Eagle Peak. (The red circle marks the spot.)

Summit ridge

See Ken (circled) for sense of scale. Try zooming in (Where's Waldo?)


Happy on a mountain

Summit ridge


Summit Panorama

Alpine lake


Yee Haw!


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