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OverviewCameron Cone rises prominently above Colorado Springs, and can be seen from most of town. Standing just 7 miles due west of downtown, Cameron is about 5 miles in front of Pikes Peak. The Barr Trail and Cog Railway offer great views of Cameron Cone, and for most people, this is as close as they will get to its summit.
In spite of its proximity to civilization, Cameron Cone is not climbed often. It is not the most accessible mountain, and precious little information is available for the would-be climber. You could collect various topo maps of the area, and end up scratching your head wondering what the ideal route up Cameron would be. Private property blocks one potential route (Crystal Park). Questions about reservoir access surround another potential route (Big Tooth Reservoir). And excessive distance makes another potential route somewhat undesirable (Jones Park). Hopefully this page will serve as a resource for those who want to climb this mountain, but aren't sure how.
For now, a single route is presented, which I believe is the easiest route. It is a Class 2 route, totalling 9-10 miles, with about 4,000' of elevation gain. The most difficult aspect of this route is the route finding. Those who are uncomfortable navigating with topo map and compass (and/or GPS) are advised to brush up on their skills before attempting this route. See the Route page for more details.
Anyone who has climbed Cameron Cone from a route not described here is encouraged to submit their route.
Getting ThereThe standard route begins at the Barr Trail. From Colorado Springs, take US 24 West. Follow signs to Manitou Springs (US 24 Business / Manitou Avenue). Follow signs for the Cog Railway, which will direct you to turn left onto Ruxton Ave. Continue past the train depot, and follow the sign for the Barr Trail parking lot (turn right onto Hydro).
This parking lot fills up early on summer weekends. If you arrive after 6am, you might have trouble finding a parking spot.
Red TapeCameron Cone is in the Pike National Forest.
- No permits or fees are required.
- Parking in the Cog Railway parking spots is not permitted.
- Hiking along the Cog Railway is not permitted.
For those considering routes other than the one listed here, keep the following in mind:
- Crystal Park Road is off limits to the public above 6,700'. If not for this, access to the mountain would likely be much easier.
- Access via the Palmer Trail is only open to about 8,300', just past Sutherland Creek. You might be able to climb the mountain from this side... I don't know.
- Access to Big Tooth Reservoir is questionable. No one at Colorado Springs Utilities was able to answer this question definitively.
When To ClimbMay - September seem to be the most popular months, judging from a look at the summit log. However, a few entries were posted in the winter.
Anyone with info on climbing Cameron Cone in the winter is encouraged to post it here.
CampingCamping is permitted in the National Forest. However, there aren't really any great camping spots along the standard route, as there aren't really any flat areas near water.
Mountain ConditionsContact the Pikes Peak Ranger District for current conditions.
Pikes Peak Ranger District
Here's a site for Teller County/Rampart Range above 7500 Ft/Pikes Peak Between 7500 And 11000 Ft.
And here's Colorado Springs weather:
Robert Alexander CameronCameron Cone (originally known as Cameron's Cone) was named after Robert Alexander Cameron (1828-1894). In Indiana, Cameron was a politician and then volunteered to serve in the Army during the Civil War. He helped found Greely, Colorado as well as Colorado Springs in 1871. He was on the first Board of Trustees at Colorado College. Later, Cameron was the warden at the state penitentiary in Canon City.
- Trail-Builder Barr Plans Path to Camerons Cone
Article from the Gazette Telegraph, Jan 19, 1930 describing Fred Barr's plans to build a trail to Cameron Cone summit.
- Photograph Archives - Cameron Cone
Pikes Peak Library District Photo Archives for Cameron Cone