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East Ridge

East Ridge

East Ridge

Page Type: Route

Location: Colorado, United States, North America

Object Title: East Ridge

Route Type: Mountaineering

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall

Time Required: One to two days

Difficulty: Class 3

Route Quality: 
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Page By: Niederbayer

Created/Edited: Aug 24, 2009 / Dec 26, 2009

Object ID: 544640

Hits: 1167 

Page Score: 72.08%  - 2 Votes 

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East Ridge Peak P  from Peak Q

Climbing Peak P via the East Ridge offers a hike/climb deep into the wilderness of the Gore Range.

The climb will demand two full days!


West Partner
Peak P - Southern Slate Creek
Nature goes Modern Art


Pitkin Lake Trailhead (Bighorn/Vail) - coming from Denver get off I - 70 at exit180. Turn right and right again on Fall Line Road and drive to the parking area for Pitkin Lake Trail at the end of the road.

Notice: this parking area allows only parking for up to 48 hours!


Hike on a well trodden path up to Pitkin Lake. Pass Pitkin Lake on its left side. Follow the creek uphill to another small lake.

The wide saddle between West and East Partner seems to be the obvious choice to cross the ridge separating Pitkin Lake from the South Slate Creek Drainage.However, from the saddle you would have to descend very steep and long rubble and snow filled gullies,which are extremely prone to rockfall.

A better option is the deep notch in the ridge between West Partner and the saddle, marked by a very obvious upstanding solitary rock (looks remotely like a thumb's up).

On the north side of the notch you will have to climb down a pretty steep and most the time (at least partially) snow filled gully, but the gully is comparably short and soon ends in a boulder field.

Scramble down the boulder field to the valley bottom and hike up to the end of the valley.

Scramble up the rocky/grassy slopes to the saddle between Peak P and Peak Q, which is only 400 ft below the summit.

Grassy ledges lead from here almost all the way up the East Ridge to the summit. You can spice up the climb by gaining the crest of the East Ridge ridge,which offers a quick and enjoyable Class 2-3 climb to the summit.

Essential Gear

Squirrel along the way

Helmet, crampons, ice pick (for the crossing of the Pitkin - South Slate Divide).

After climbing down to the South Slate Creek Drainage you will be in the middle of nowhere - you will be completely on your own.

Probably only a handful of people visit this isolated corner of the Gore Range per year.


Squirrel along the wayNature goes Modern ArtWest PartnerPeak P - Southern Slate Creek East Ridge Peak P  from Peak Q