Northwest Ridge

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 39.45850°N / 105.9377°W
Additional Information Route Type: Hiking, Mountaineering, Skiing
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Additional Information Time Required: Most of a day
Additional Information Difficulty: Class 2 / Intermediate Ski
Additional Information Grade: II
Sign the Climber's Log


The Northwest Ridge of Mount Guyot is a great alternative to the route from popular Georgia Pass (East Ridge). The Northwest Ridge probably offers the best skiing line from or near the summit. This route seems steep when viewed from the trailhead, but it is surprisingly mellow. It is Class 2 hiking and an intermediate ski.

Descending the summit ridge

Getting There

Wellington Street Trailhead: 10,300 feet.

Drive to downtown Breckenridge and turn east on Wellington Street. Follow Wellington through residential areas and pass about 8-10 stop signs. Continue on Wellington as it turns to dirt, and passes a few active mines. About 4 miles from Breckenridge, you will find the parking area on your right side with room for about 10 cars. There is a sign that asks you not to continue on the road. Park here.

Route Description

From the trailhead, continue along the dirt road for about 1/2 mile to a gate closing the road to all motorized travel. In spring, this road is usually melted out. 1/4 mile past the gate, find a trail that leaves the road and goes left. This trail will bring you into Little French Gulch drainage.

Follow this trail for 1.3 miles until you find yourself at the mouth of a large gully coming from the Northwest side of Mount Guyot. If you are traveling on skis, this trail should have snow.

Summer and Fall:

From the mouth of the gully, turn west and gain the Northwest Ridge. Follow the Northwest Ridge all the way to the summit on broken talus and dirt slopes. This ridge is Class 2. The summit ridge suddenly looks exciting once you gain it. Walk the final 100 yards or so and find the summit.

Snow Season:

During snow season, one could follow the ridge, or snow climb the gully. If you choose to snow climb this gully, simply follow the wide strip of snow to near the summit. This is an easy snow climb. If you are on skis, you will be able to skin much of the gully. It is surprisingly low-angled.

Ski Descent:

This is an intermediate ski. Using the D system, this ski is rated at D4/II/R1. It is barely over 30 degrees at the steepest. In spring ski season, you will likely not be able to ski from the summit proper, but from the top of the snow strip, roughly 100 feet below the summit.

Round Trip Mileage: 7.4 miles
Elevation Gain: 3000 feet

View a TOPO! Map of this Route: Mount Guyot - Northwest Ridge

Skiing the Northwest Ridge

Essential Gear

In summer, nothing but regular hiking gear.

In snow season, an ice axe might be nice if the snow is very frozen. Crampons will likely be overkill. If you are skiing, you will need the usual avalanche gear and the knowledge to use it.

External Links

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