Southwest Ridge

Page Type
Colorado, United States, North America
Route Type:
Time Required:
Most of a day
Class 1

Route Quality: 3 Votes

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Southwest Ridge
Created On: Apr 17, 2003
Last Edited On: Dec 22, 2006


Starting at the Ute Creek TH, cross Tarryall Creek on a good footbridge. Continue to follow the excellent Ute Creek Trail as it meanders through grassy meadows dotted with Lodgepole Pines. The trail soon bends towards the Ute Creek Drainage and begins a gradual ascent. The first 2.5 miles is relatively uneventful and only gets you a mere 500 to 600 ft. of elevation gain. Enjoy the flat terrain for things will soon change.

At 9,600 ft. the trail will steepen as it begins an ascent up to Bison Pass (11,180 ft.) Hike for 1.7 miles to the Ute Creek Trail/Brookside-McCurdy Trail junction at 11,180 ft. This is Bison Pass. From the junction leave the Ute Creek Trail and continue on the Brookside-McCurdy Trail as it traverses across Bison Pass to Bison Arm . Bison Arm is a broad, 11,860-ft. pass on the south ridge that allows for easy passage to Bison's wonderful summit plateau.

Route Description

At this point the trail system is no longer needed. Leave the comforts of the trail and hike northeast to 12,000 ft. While en route to Bison's rocky summit, pass through the magical rock gardens that Bison is famous for. This plateau is wide open and route finding to the summit is obvious.

Essential Gear

Bring pleny of water, there is no water available on this route.

Miscellaneous Info

If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.

Southwest Ridge

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