John Marrone and RockyMountainDiva work the "Peak T" summit block
Toward the summit block
Though unranked (with only 80 feet of vertical prominence) and lacking an official USGS name, “Peak T” stands out in many climbers’ minds thanks to the YDS 5.5 summit block. With no bolts on the summit and limited places to set removable protection, a successful ascent of the summit pinnacle requires somehow slinging the summit block and sending up a lead climber ok with sketchy pseudo-protection made of webbing that may/may not stay put. Even the approach to the summit block is a fun jumbled scramble, and the Gore Range scenery from the top of this conical perch is mind blowing.
A striking and memorable peak, “Peak T” is well worth the visit!
Rank: Unranked Prominence: 80 feet YDS Rating: 5.5 USGS Quad: Vail East Planning Maps: Trails Illustrated #108 Vail, Frisco, Dillon (primary) and #107 Green Mtn Reservoir / Ute Pass (secondary)
The scree and talus approach from Upper Slate Lake
"Peak T" boulder hop
Upper Slate Lake below
Upper grassy slopes
Nearing the ridgecrest
Along the ridge toward "Peak T"
Scrambling toward "Peak T"
Houses of the Holy
“Peak T” sits northwest of the town of Frisco, Colorado, near Breckenridge and Silverthorne. The Slate Lake Basin is the typical approach for “Peak T.” The Slate Creek Trail accesses this basin and can be reached from the Rock Creek, Boulder, or Brush Creek trailheads.
Driving directions courtesy of the US Forest Service.
Rock Creek Trailhead (@9500 feet)
From I-70 take Exit 205, Silverthorne/Dillon, and travel north on HWY 9 for approximately 7.7 miles. Turn left onto Rock Creek Road (FDR 1350) across from the Blue River Campground. Follow the gravel road for approximately 1.2 miles and turn left at the road marked “Rock Creek”. The winter trailhead parking lot is immediately on your left. For summer access, you can continue up the 4WD road for approximately 1.7 miles to the Rock Creek Trailhead and parking lot.
Brush Creek Trailhead (@9000 feet)
From I-70 take Exit 205, Silverthorne/Dillon, and travel north on HWY 9. Travel north on HWY 9 for approximately 16.8 miles. Just after mile marker 118 turn left onto County Road 30 toward the town of Heeney. Follow County Road 30 for approximately 0.5 miles and turn right into the parking area at the old Grandview Cemetery on the right side of the road. Park here if you do not have high clearance 4WD. Across from the Grandview Cemetery Parking is the Brush Creek Road (FDR 1695) where motorized (4WD) access is allowed during the summer if you want to drive to the Brush Creek Trailhead. From the Cemetery parking lot up Brush Creek Road to the trailhead is 2.3 miles.
See important details regarding driving directions and private property concerns on kane’s “Peak Q” / “Prisoner Peak” page here on SummitPost.
“Peak T” resides within the 133,325 acre Eagles Nest Wilderness, so motorized and mechanized vehicles are prohibited and dogs must be leashed. There is no fee to visit this part of the White River National Forest and permits are not required for overnight stays in the backcountry.
Please practice Leave No Trace principals:
1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
3. Dispose of Waste Properly
4. Leave What You Find
5. Minimize Campfire Impacts
6. Respect Wildlife
When to Climb
Gore Range views
Long approaches would make a winter or spring ascent of “Peak S” a worthy testpiece. Summer and fall would provideeasiest passage, though the mosquitoes in the Slate Creek / Lake Basin can benearly intolerable in moist conditions.
Click the National Weather Service image for a zone forecast at an elevation of 12398 ft
Descending the south side of "Peak T"
Leaving "Peak T"
Upper Slate Lake is a great place to camp for an attempt on “Peak T.” Regardless of trailhead used, expect about/at least 10 miles one-way and 3,000 feet of elevation gain from truck to campsite. Regulation backcountry sites at least 100 feet from the lake or stream are not super-abundant, but can be found on the lake’s southeast shore. Resist the temptation to grab one of the sites on the eastern end of the lake at the outlet as they are very close to the water.
Southwest from "Peak T"
"Peak T" from the southwest
Please let me know of any additional trip reports or other informative resources to attach to this page. Thanks!