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Campbell Peak

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Campbell Peak

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Colorado, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 37.98708°N / 107.85489°W

Object Title: Campbell Peak

County: San Miguel

Activities: Hiking, Mountaineering, Scrambling

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Elevation: 13213 ft / 4027 m

 

Page By: Liba Kopeckova

Created/Edited: Jul 18, 2016 / Sep 4, 2017

Object ID: 977353

Hits: 742 

Page Score: 85.36%  - 20 Votes 

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Overview

Campbell Peak is an unranked 13er located within Sneffels Range, close to the town of Telluride

Why to add this peak since it is unranked? because it is there and it has a name. The peak looks beautiful from the drive to Telluride and especially from Telluride Ski Resort. 

It combines very nicely with “T 0”, ranked high 13er 13,735 feet (= 4027 meters). "T 0" is a bicentennial peak (among the top 200 in Colorado) and it also is on the list of 50 San Juan Highest.

Class: 2 with a short section of class 3 (see Rock Obstacle in images section)
Parent Lineage:"T 0"
Saddle: 12.980'
Nearby Peaks:
  • “T 0” Peak 13,735 feet      0.49 miles
  • “West Dallas” 13,741 ft     1.16 miles (unranked)
  • “S 3” 13,410 feet             1.20 miles (unranked)
  • “S 5” 13,380 feet             1.45 miles (unranked)
  • “S6” 13,441 feet              1.46 miles 
  • Mears Peak 13,496 feet     1.60 miles
  • Dallas Peak 13,809 feet     1.68 miles
  • “S 4” 13,242 feet             1.88 miles
  • “S 7” 13,220 feet             2.01 miles
  • Wolcott Mnt. 13,041'        2.05 miles (unranked)
  • Ruffner Mnt. 13,003'        2.13 miles (unranked)
  • “S 8” 13,252 feet             2.74 miles
  • Mount Sneffels 14,150'     3.59 miles

Overview of Peaks - Telluride
Overview of Peaks - Telluride

The best guidebook describing this outing is Telluride Trails by Don Scarmuzzi

Getting There

The Eider Creek Trailhead is close to Telluride. Telluride is a popular tourist destination and it is really easy to get there. 
Eider Creek Trailhead is about 9,130 feet elevation, and you get there by driving up Mill Creek Road north (just past the Shell gas station if driving from Telluride), if driving to Telluride right before the gas station. 
Drive up Mill Creek Road to the first big switchback (less than one mile). Park here - there are a few spots for about 6 cars. There is also a a primitive campsite right behind one parking spot and another one close by - 60 feet up the trail.  
The road is dirt road, but 2 WD vehicles can make it. 

Route - Southeast Ridge

Southeast Ridge
Southeast Ridge
Start at Eider Creek Trail Trailhead, walk for about 45 min on a well marked and easy to follow Eider Creek trail  as it winds through beautiful aspens. Turn west at the junction with Deep Creek trail intersection. This is well signed. 

Continue on Deep Creek trail west, it even drops a little bit down in elevation. You will pass 2 small drainages and then a creek. Here the trail turns up and after a couple of switchbacks, look for a huge pine tree that fell across Deep Creek Trail and that has saw marks where a chunk  had to be cleared from the trail. This tree covers a small deer trail on the right (N), which is the way. 

Start just left of the big pine tree, leaving Deep Creek Trail, and follow the deer trail or bushwhack up a little shoulder/ridge for about 1/4 mile (stay right to avoid many fallen trees). Next, angle to the left (NW) toward the clearing before the super steeps. If you do it right, it’s only 15 minutes to the clearing from Deep Creek Trail. It’s 2 hrs more to the summit. Bushwhack up the first steep drainage from the trees. Hike steeply on the left rise to start, but cross back right at a rock ledge in the drainage go back into the aspens. Or, from the clearing, go back into the woods, and scramble up the left side. This part is disorienting, going up or down.
Either way, hike the strongest trail straight up through aspens, between the rock outcrops, and continue more steeply through the high evergreens to Campbell’s SE ridge. Stay on it. I did a slight variation and ended up higher up on the ridge (about 200 feet above the fence). I did not find the route finding too difficult, and gaining a ridge took a while, but once up there it is rewarding. 

After crossing an old broken fence near the ridge and tree line, hike up the southeast ridge. Enjoy the views, especially Dallas Peak, West Dallas and "T 0" look great. The ridge is easy until you see a large rock obstacle. It is not as bad as it looks, just approach it and head towards its right side - there is an easy and not too exposed scramble, perhaps a few class 3 moves.  A few small cairns mark the path too, but I had a hard time spotting those on the way up. The rest of the ridge is ok to the summit on flat, loose scree. It is just a short 15 min stroll once you get above this obstacle. 

The summit appears small since much taller "T 0" is right behind it. There is a tiny cairn, no sign in register. The views over to Telluride Mountain Village, Wilson group, "T 0", West Dallas, Dallas Peak, Mount Emma, and to the northwest of Mears peak are amazing. Unfortunately, 14er Mount Sneffels is not seen, it is hiding behind "T 0".

Bonus: T 0 and/or West Dallas Peak would definitively extend your hiking day. 

Distance: 9 miles round trip

Elevation change: 4,400 feet

Images from the hikes

T 0 13,735'
T 0 13,735' from SE ridge

Campbell Peak and T 0
Campbell Peak (left) and T 0 (right) as seen from SE ridge

Campbell Peak
Campbell Peak from T 0

Rock obstacle close up
Rock obstacle close up

View south
View south Wilson group and on the left Lizard Head

Interesting Rock formation
Interesting Rock formation

Red Tape

There is no red tape. Driving to the trailhead, parking and hiking is for free. 
Telluride is a historic and beautiful Colorado mountain town, just keep in mind that is it one of the most expensive places in North America. Restaurants and lodging are priced accordingly. 
Columbines
Columbines

Wild roses
Wild roses

Lupine
Lupine

When to Climb

You can climb any time. Summer obviously provides the best access and no avalanche danger. 
If you decide to ski the peak, or venture out there during the winter time check avalanche conditions - click here

Camping

There is available primitive camping available at the trailhead with built fire pits (just a high circle of stones). There is no fee for camping there. 

External Links

Images