Known as Mount Crested Butte, it rises like a tower over the small town of Crested Butte at 12,162 ft above sea level and is one of Colorado's most well known and popular landmarks. It is an attraction all year long.
Most of its popularity is gained during the winter as the mountain is a very popular ski resort. However in the summer there is a tram taking you all the way up until your half a mile below the summit, from there it is an easy walk up. But the die hards hike from the bottom on a service road, making it an attraction for all. However, the summit is closed during the Winter and most of Spring.
The main town of Crested Butte however is at the end of the long extension of the Elk Mountains known as the Ruby Range.
It's natural beauty attracts way more than thousands of people each year. If you take a short trip into Gothic, you are inside the most beautiful part of the Elk's. Slate River Road also takes inside a mountain canyon. But from town if you go to Kebler Pass, you could either visit Lake Ewriwn or go Lost Lake or maybe even shoot over to Marble and visit the Crystal Mill for a day.
But you can get right into the core of the mountains by going up tens of 4WD passes that take you around. Mountain biking and hiking allows you to also experience this. Crested Butte is one part of Colorado that you have to see before you die.
Crested Butte is a small town located in Gunnison County. It is just miles from Aspen and Gunnison, CO.
From Aspen you could go over Independence Pass to Twin Lakes, then make a right to Buena Vista. From there go over Monarch Pass (paved) to Gunnison. From there, go North for about 50 miles or so to Crested Butte. Or if you want a more scenic trip, take a short cut.
From Buena Vista go to main street and get onto Cottonwood Pass. Go down a dirt 2WD road to Taylor Park. From there make a left and go through the Taylor Canyon. Right after your out of the canyon, get onto a dirt 2WD road called "Jack's Cabin Cut-Off" (2WD). Once you get to a paved road make a right into Crested Butte.
Now if you want to summit the mountain, here are some options starting from the town of Mount Crested Butte.
During the summer, an easy and pleasurable half day adventure up this mountain consists of taking a tram up until your half a mile from the summit. That half a mile is an easy trail up some rocks. This would be ideal for the family.
However, if you want a little more of a challenge, you could hike up the service road until you reach the main trail taking you half a mile to the summit. The service road is located at the end of the town at the cut-off to Gothic. It essentially takes you to the same location as the tram route. There is a mountaineer's route up it, but I am unsure where that is, if you know, please post it.
The service road route is listed in the "routes" section of the page.
No permits required. Only service vehicles are allowed on the service road. The tram will cost you per person.
You can stay at any hotel in town or if you are hooked on camping, you can camp up slate river road or down by Gothic. If you want to go a little further you can go to Lake Erwin campground or Lost Lake campground for paid camping.