OverviewThe 12395 ft (3778 m) Hiamovi Mountain sits to the east of Lake Granby in the Indian Peaks Wilderness just south of the boundaries of Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park. The eastern slopes of Hiamovi are steep rising abruptly above Hell Canyon. Its western slopes, in contrast, are gentle. A trail starts near Lake Granby and goes to a broad 11180 ft saddle between Hiamovi and Mount Irving Hale before descending into Hell Canyon. I followed the trail to the saddle where I left the trail and hiked up the gentle slopes to reach the summit of Hiamovi. Those beautiful slopes provided me with great views of jagged peaks to the east. Lake Granby, however, was only visible near trailhead.
On my way up the mountain, I did not see any other hikers. On the way down, I saw a father and son hiking up the trail to camp in Upper Hell Canyon.
Hike StatisticsAll distances are per my GPS.
Trip ReportMonday August 15, 2016
Left the condo we had rented at Ski Granby at 6:00 a.m. Sunrise was at around 6:20 a.m. Drove north on Route 40 to 34. At lake Granby, turned east onto Road 6, payed the entrance fee and followed the road on the southern shoreline of Lake Granby to its eastern end until I reached Roaring Fork Trailhead. Many people had camped in the nearby campground but no one was at the trailhead.
Started my hike at 6:45 a.m. I was in the shade and remained in the shade for the next couple of hours. It was 38 degrees F at the trailhead and elevation was 8300 ft. The trail began to make switchback going up a slope steeply.
As I quickly gained elevation, Lake Granby came to view below me.
After only one mile, I was up to 9150 ft where I reached a foot bridge over the Roaring Fork of Arapaho Creek. There were some nice tall pine trees there. Lake Granby could no longer be seen.
For the next 1.5 miles, the trail followed the creek gently uphill at the bottom of a valley. Rapids/small waterfalls could be seen from the trail. I was glad to see that unlike many other places in Colorado where entire forests of pine had died as a result of infestation, the trees in that area had not been affected.
After crossing a couple of side creeks, the trail reached a foot bridge that took me back to the south side of the creek. A few hundred feet later, I reached a signed junction. Left went to Watanga Lakes. I turned right continuing up Roaring Fork trail. The trail went into a pine forest and began to go up very steeply. At around 10850 ft, openings began to appear in the forest. I was then mostly in the sun.
At 9:20 a.m. I reached a beautiful broad saddle at 11180 ft. To the northeast, I saw a high point which I assumed to be the summit of Hiamovi (later I found out it was the false summit). Jagged peaks came to view to the east. I knew that the trail would start to go down on the other side of the saddle to reach Stone Lake in the upper parts of Hell Canyon. I left trail and began to hike up the beautiful grassy slopes toward the summit of Hiamovi.
After going up a rock and grass covered slope, I reached a fairly flat area at around 11500 ft. What I thought was the summit of Hiamovi was now in good view.
Watanga Mountain could be seen to the north and Mt. Irving hale to the south. I did not take any pictures of Irving hale until I reached the summit.
Kept walking on the flat area toward Hiamovi. As I went, the land became more sloped and more boulders appeared.
By around 11900 ft of elevation, I was going up fairly steep slopes covered with boulders.
Just when I reached the top boulder, which I assumed to be the summit of Hiamovi, I saw that I was at only 12200 ft and the true summit was still a short distance away.
The 12200 ft Hiamovi Tower came to view.
Reached the summit at 10:50 a.m. The views were spectacular. I took pictures, ate my lunch and enjoyed the solitude at that magnificent spot. Found a summit registry that someone had left there in October of 2015. Since then, two people had signed it in July 2016 and another person in August.
Left at 11:25 a.m. Once in the boulder field, I noted a lake not far below.
Mt. Irving Hale to the south and the jagged peaks to the east.
Reached the saddle and began to hike down the trail in the steep forest. I came across a father and son who were hiking up the trail to camp at Stone Lake at the end of the trail. Those were the only other hikers I saw all day.
Near the bridge over the creek.
Back on the trail along the creek.
Views of Lake Granby again.
Reached my car at 3:00 p.m. It became cloudy and very windy. Driving back on Road 6, Lake Granby appeared wavy.