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South Ridge

South Ridge

South Ridge

Page Type: Route

Location: Colorado, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 37.86230°N / 107.7802°W

Object Title: South Ridge

Route Type: Scrambling

Season: Summer

Rock Difficulty: Class 3

Route Quality: 
 - 1 Votes


Page By: John Kirk

Created/Edited: Sep 3, 2008 / Sep 3, 2008

Object ID: 438619

Hits: 3097 

Page Score: 78.27%  - 9 Votes 

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South Ridge

Doing this peak by itself is probably the best option for folks who want to "enjoy" their climb. The South Ridge is the only route I will recommend, as all other routes involve sketchy downclimbs and horrendous sidehilling traverses. From Ophir Pass, this quick route is less than 2 miles round-trip, and requires only 1,900' vertical gain, with some scrambling near the summit.

Lookout Peak
Scrambling section - photo by Kane

Getting There

The route begins from Ophir Pass, reached from Highway 550 about 5.5 miles south of Red Mountain Pass. A high-clearance vehicle is recommended to reach Ophir Pass. Other options from this parking spot include the more difficult South Lookout Peak and the 13,156' "V 5".

Route Description

The South Ridge involves some unsteady footing on loose scree but remains manageable compared to other places you could find yourself on the peak. Follow grassy slopes up from Ophir Pass north, skirting or going over the hill in front marked 12187. Proceed up mixed talus and scree and acquire the south ridge. The final 400' entails easy 3rd class scrambling on not-so-wonderful rock. Wonderful views are available from the summit. With other peaks in mind for the day, unless you are thirsty for a long and rough experience, it is best to reverse the route and start a new hike from somewhere else. An exposed downclimb of a west-facing chimney off the northwest ridge a couple dozen yards from the summit allows one to continue across horrible scree and hardpan to soft-ranked "Oscars Peak" and beyond. I finished with 5 other ranked 13ers for the day, but a traverse from Lookout Peak to anywhere else is highly "not recommended".
Lookout Peak Topo

SP member Kane has a trip report of sorts for the South Ridge route on his custom 2008 page:

Essential Gear

A helmet is not a bad idea. A rope for rappel also might not be a bad idea if you are hell-bent on visiting other peaks to the north of Lookout Peak.


Grassy slopesSouth Ridge scrambleLookout Peak - ScrambleLoose rockFinal stepsLookout Peak TopoFor the determined
South Ridge scrambleDuchess below the summitScramble on south ridgeDescentSouth ridge scrambleLookout Peak