Terror from Mt. Darline.
Terror BM is one of many basaltic peaks residing on the Grand Mesa. Despite some thinking the Mesa is "flat", it definitely is not. Lakes, mountains, rivers, creeks, reservoirs, and a ski resort reside on the Mesa. The peaks are almost all isolated; only a small handful on the entire Mesa have a trail anywhere near a summit. There are many different pack trails for biking, hiking, and horseback riding on the Mesa, but very few go to summits. Terror BM is no exception - the bushwhacking from the end of the nearest logical trail (near Rex Reservoir) makes for a 3 mile round trip bushwhack.
Terror Creek, Terror BM's namesake, was originally named Holy Terror Creek. When the Forest Service began naming (or renaming) and recording features of the Mesa and the area, they sanitized and removed the religious connotations of most of the mountains and features (Mount of the Holy Cross being a major exception, and one of religious consequence for many years. It, however, resides quite some distance from Grand Mesa and Terror BM). Interestingly, Priest Mountain is but a scant few miles from Terror.
Terror BM lies on the east side of the Leroux Creek area of Grand Mesa N.F. This little island of peaks contains others in the area that are very isolated, and this road is the only car access to the basin: 11063, 11010, 11106, Priest Mtn, Mt. Hatten, Crater Peak, Mt. Darline, Terror BM, Green Mtn, Doughty Mtn, and 10245 all lie around this basin.
Terror BM Stats:
Elevation : 10,935'
CO Peaks Rank : 1812
Counties : Delta
Quad : Chalk Mountain
Coords : 39.0136°N, -107.6383°W
Rise : 355'
From Denver, drive I-70 west to Glenwood Springs. Take 82 south to Carbondale, turn right (west) on 133. Drive up and over McClure's Pass, head west to Hotchkiss, the "Friendliest Town Around" and through the West Elks wine country. The drive to Hotchkiss takes a good 3.5-4 hours, with no stops. From Hotchkiss, drive west on 92 just over 3 miles to 3100 road, clearly marked with "NATIONAL FOREST ACCESS - LEROUX CREEK". Turn right, drive north quite a good distance to the N.F. Boundary. Continue north to 1F road, which appears quickly on your right. This is about 17 miles north off of 92. Driving time from Hotchkiss takes about 50 minutes to this point.
From here, you have a few options:
1F is the main access that takes you to Rex Reservoir
you can walk east up 1F to 733 up to Rex Reservoir
1F if the main access east/west
you can ride a mountain bike up 1F to 733 to very near Rex Reservoir (marshes will likely stop you
you can drive a motorcycle or ATV up to Rex (best to stop before the marshes, you'll have to walk at some point anyway, and the ATVs, etc. just tear things up
you can drive a high clearance 4x4 that you don't mind possibly damaging up to near Rex Reservoir (please don't drive through the marshes).
for those of you animal-inclined, you can ride whatever animal up there you want.
No matter your mode of transport, you will have to walk from shortly after Rex Reservoir to the ridge and scramble up the summit.
Something like 12.5 miles, 2500' gain.
Red Tape - a.k.a. - things that will stop youMosquitoes.
Oh my god, the mosquitoes! If you don't like repellents, I suggest head nets and impervious clothing or clothing impregnated with repellents. You can also wait until first frost/cooler temps (late August or September). That, or never stop moving, and prepare to be bitten.
Snow and road closure:
During winter, the road is not plowed past the N.F. boundary. Access may still be attained by foot and snowmobile, but this will be arduous. Heavy snow can linger until Memorial Day or later, depending on snowfall.
Lots of hunting
also takes place in this area. Be cognizant of hunters and consider wearing orange during hunting season. The area is well populated with deer, elk, moose (not sure you can hunt moose up there yet), bear, and LOTS of other wildlife.
If it rains, consider waiting a little bit before you resume/start traveling. The mud is VERY slippery and sticky at the same time. It does, however, absorb the water quickly.
Camping is available in the entire Grand Mesa N.F. There are informal (re:no water, no bathrooms) available at many pull-outs along the main road. "Dispersed" camping is also available off the roadway. All water (plenty available in the creeks) should be filtered or boiled before use. Please practice Leave No Trace ethics for wastes and camping. Firewood may be gathered throughout as well (I believe a permit might be required for wood removal...?). Always practice fire safety in pre-established rings.
Please see the Grand Mesa by Scott
page or the Delta County Page
for more details on other local information.