Flat Top plateaus from the flat topped Derby Peak.
Derby Peak is the third highest peak in the second largest Wilderness area in Colorado. At 12186' feet, the peak provides outstanding views over nearly the entire Flat Tops Wilderness Area.
The peak sits at the headwaters of Bear River and Derby Creeks--water that flows off the north side of the peak flows into Bear River which turns into the Yampa and flows through Dinosaur National Monument and into the Green near Vernal, UT. Water that flows off the south side of Derby Peak flows into Derby Creek which flows into the Colorado River and meets the Green near Moab, UT.
Derby Peak is a true "Flat Top" peak. The summit is wide and flat, with lots of room to roam. The true summit is a slightly higher rock spit on the northeast edge of this flat top plateau.
One can access this area from Stump Park and Derby Creek.
Derby Peak can be accessed from several trailheads. One can come in from Stillwater, McMillan Lake, Stump Park, Crescent Lake, or Trappers Lake. Great loop trails can be planned if you're willing to travel cross-country and walk longer distances. Shuttle trips are also possible. Just look at a good map and figure it out. The Flat Tops are some of the best hiking mountains in Colorado--the wide open landscape, combined with a great trail system, and plenty of water make countless trip combinations possible. Go for it!
When to Climb
Ideal climbing conditions are found from mid-June to mid-October (barring any big early season storms).
Contact the Yampa Ranger District for up-to-date road, trail, and wildfire conditions:
PO Box 7
300 Roselawn St.
Yampa, Colorado 80483
Primitive camping options abound in the Flat Tops Wilderness. Travelers must follow Leave No Trace etiquette and all Wilderness Regulations. For more info go to: http://www.fs.fed.us/r2/whiteriver/recreation/wilderness/flattops/index.shtml
"The following acts are prohibited on National Forest System land within the Flat Tops Wilderness."
1. Entering or being in the area with more than 15 people per group, and a maximum combination of 25 people and pack or saddle animals in any one group is prohibited.
2. There is no permit system in place in the Flat Tops Wilderness but we do ask that visitors sign in on provided trailhead registration forms.
3. Camping within one hundred feet of any lake, stream or trail, or any “No Camping” or “Wilderness Restoration Site” sign or within ¼ mile of Trappers, Hooper, Keener or Smith Lakes is prohibited.
4. Building, maintaining, attending or using a campfire within one hundred feet of any lake, stream, or trail or within ¼ miles of Trappers, Hooper, Keener or Smith Lakes is prohibited.
5. Storing equipment or personal property or supplies for longer than 10 days is prohibited.
6. Hitching, tethering or hobbling any pack or saddle animal within one hundred feet of any lake, stream or trail is prohibited.
7. Possessing any pack or saddle animal within ¼ mile of Trappers Lake except for watering or through travel is prohibited.
8. Possessing a dog or other animal that is harassing wildlife or people or damaging property is prohibited. There is no leash law in the Flat Tops, however dogs must be kept under verbal control at all times.
9. Possessing or using a wagon, cart or other vehicle including a wheelbarrow or game cart is prohibited.
10. Shortcutting a switchback in a trail is prohibited.