I have climbed this route twice and know some tricks to make it safer and faster! You must climb to the trail used for the traverse of Crestone Needle to Crestone Peak which is to the right of the red couloir. Follow the trail left to the right side of the red couloir and climb up following faint climbers trail. This is solid 3rd class without the rock fall of the coulior about half way up you enter the red coulior to the summit.
Route Climbed: South Face from Cottonwood Creek Trailhead Date Climbed: 08-18-92
Done as a backpack in to Cottonwood Lake, described by Gerry Roach as "arduous", thus totally redefining 'arduous' for my my husband, J and I!! By the time we got to our campsite at Cottonwood Lake, neither of us cared if we ever saw the top of that peak, only 1 mile/2000' away. Luckily, a good night's sleep was a great tonic, and we recovered enough to complete the climb in the morning and backpack out. Loose rocks falling, steep snowfield toward the top...I disliked this peak as strongly as I loved the Needle.