This is a decent, shorter outing (assuming the Forest Service access roads are snow-free and passable) that leverages existing footpaths to a very brief bushwack to the Adobe Peak summit. The elevation gain is mostly gradual and the route is heavily wooded much of the way for shade from the sun.
Roundtrip Distance: About 3 miles
Elevation Gain: About 950 feet
• Follow Hwy 96 west from Pueblo to MacKenzie Junction through the scenic Hardscrabble Canyon
• Continue another 6 miles turning right / north at County Road 271
• Continue on CR 271, which begins trending eastward, for roughly 6 miles to FS 274
• Follow FS 274 east up Willow Creek for approximately 2 miles to a sharp turn where you will find parking
• Follow a use trail up Willow Creek (you do not have to follow the road to its north!) for roughly 1 mile until it intersects with a dirt road again.
• Follow this road trending south-southeast to the intersection of dirt FS 336.
• Soon Adobe Peak should be seen due-north through sparse timber
• Ascend the sparsely-timbered, grassy south slope to the summit where a large, red summit cairn awaits.
• Trail and Area Maps: Trails Illustrated has yet to cover this lovely area. Useful maps include: The USGS Hardscrabble Mountain Quad (for detailed navigation) and the San Isabel National Forest area map.
• Colorado Gazetteer or similar roadmap illustrating county roads
• Compass or GPS
• Water and snacks
• First aid kit