Braddock Peak (11,972’) is in Colorado State Forest, just north of Rocky Mountain National Park, and a few miles west of Cameron Pass. Higher and more popular peaks in the area include Mount Richthofen (12,940’), Nohku Crags (12,485’), and Mount Mahler (12,464’). A rocky buttress on Braddock’s east side looms over the beautiful Agnes Lake. To the west of Braddock Peak lies Seven Utes Mountain; to the southwest the Never Summer Wilderness, and Routt National Forest.
Older descriptions of hiking routes in the Lake Agnes area refer to Braddock Peak as Point 11,960. However it has now been named after Dr. William A. Braddock (1929 – 2003). He was a surveyor for the US Geological Society who mapped a large area of the northern Front Range. From 1958 – 1994 Braddock was a professor of Geological Sciences at CU Boulder.
By itself, Braddock Peak may not offer any particularly alluring challenges compared to the other peaks in the area. It is just a high 11,000 foot Class 2 walk-up that is off the beaten track. However, it does provide an up-close and personal view of the stunning cirque above Agnes Lake. In particular, the Nokhu Crags reveal their secrets from this vantage point. From Braddock Peak you can easily peer into the confusing maze of gulleys and towering spires that form the west side of the Nokhu Crags. The two distinct summits of crags are clearly visible. (see photos below)
From Fort Collins take HWY 287 north about 10 miles to HWY 14 (Poudre Canyon). Travel 60 miles along Colorado’s only designated “Wild and Scenic River” to the top of 10,267’ Cameron Pass. Quickly drop down into Jackson County for about 2.0 miles to the entrance into the Colorado State Forest. There is a fee station a few hundred yards off of the highway. Get a vehicle pass even if you are parked at the highway.
In the summer you can take a winding high clearance road for about 2.0 miles to the Agnes Lake Trailhead. After about 1.5 miles, you will pass a turn-off to the west (right) that leads to the Agnes Creek Cabin and the Nokhu Hut. This road leads to the ridge north of Braddock Peak. In the winter the Agnes Lake road is closed at the highway, so that adds approximately 1.5 miles to the route.
When to Climb
Good winter route.
Braddock Peak is accessible throughout the entire year, however, depending on the route, massive amounts of snow and avalanche danger may be an issue in the winter. In the winter start hiking from the highway, then turn west before you get to the Agnes Lake Parking area on the side road leading toward Nokhu Hut. This road provides reasonable access to the north ridge of Braddock Peak in the winter.
The most convenient access to Braddock Peak is from the Agnes Lake Trailhead in Colorado State Forest. Day use fees for Colorado State Forest are $5.00 per vehicle, or $3.00 for an individual walk-in (if parked at Cameron Pass and hiking along the Michigan Ditch for example). No backcountry camping is allowed in the Lake Agnes area, although no permit is necessary elsewhere in the State Forest. Campfires are not permitted. The Crags is an established campground just off the main dirt road leading to the Agnes Lake Parking Area. There are no camping regulations within the Never Summer Wilderness. Please practice “Leave no Trace” regardless of where you begin your approach. If you drop south into Rocky Mountain National Park, there are strict camping regulations. Please refer to their website.
Colorado State Forest
Colorado State Forest State Park
2746 County Road 41
Walden, Colorado 80480
Routt National Forest
USDA Forest Service
Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests
2468 Jackson Street
Laramie, WY 82070
WEBSITE:Routt National Forest
Rocky Mountain National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park
1000 Highway 36
Estes Park, CO 80517-8397