“A steep and rocky trail up 14er Mt. Sneffels for those who wish to avoid scrambling.”
— Tyler Prince
River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife
The trailhead is generally closed 2-3 miles below the lower trailhead (where this run starts).
The land manager requests dogs be leashed.
Need to Know
Example: There is very little shade after the first 2 miles, and the summer sun can be brutal. There are some rocky sections - careful of your ankles!
While the bottom of the trail right after the turnoff is fairly flat, it is rocky and not ideal for running. Once turning up the gully the going is far too steep to run, and the second gully isn't any better. Overall a poor choice for runners; an excellent choice for hikers.
From the turnoff from Blue Lakes Trail
, head right on the trail. Run up a low-grade rocky trail before turning right up a steep gully. Continue for around 500 ft vertical gain up the loose dirt/gravel on unclear trail. Despite its grade, there are no switchbacks here, so this bit is brutal.
Reach a saddle at 13,500 ft, and turn left up another gully. This gully is a similar grade but is composed primarily if larger talus blocks. It funnels runners up to just below 14,000 ft. This part of the mountain is fairly shaded, so the top if often full of snow into July. As the gully narrows and becomes cliffed out near the top, angle to the left. Pass through a V-notch (class 3 move at most). Continue along a vague trail, angling up and to the right. The summit is only about 100 ft up and is clear from this point. Run up along some grippy rocks and reach the summit.
From here you may return from whence you came, or downclimb the southwest ridge and link up with the Blue Lakes Trail
to do the Mt. Sneffels
featured run in reverse.
Flora & Fauna
This run starts in the beautiful Yankee Boy Basin among beautiful wildflowers. As you get higher, you're likely to encounter marmots and pika.
History & Background
Example: There are rusting remains at the tip of Heyward Point of a winch system that was once used to haul gas tanks from the water to a light beacon on the headland.