The West Ridge is the standard route on Lincoln. It is a fun and easy class 2 hike to an enjoyable summit. Colorado Fourteeners Initiative
recommends this approach, because it "will help to reduce impacts to these Fourteener's Fragile Alpine Environments. "
Distance, round-trip: 5.4 miles
Elevation Gain: 2,600 feet
Photo by ogonzoo
Use Kite Lake Trailhead, which can be reached via the dirt "Kite Lake Road." The trailhead is six miles from the junction of Colorado 9 and Kite Lake Road in the town of Alma. Most of the road is passable for passenger cars, but the last mile or so to Kite Lake is a bit rougher.
To begin, follow the trail around Kite Lake's right (east) side uphill and north through the large basin, then turn left and follow the well-defined westward-leading switchbacks to the Democrat-Cameron saddle at 13,400 feet. From there, turn northeast and follow the ridge crest, either summitting or bypassing Cameron's summit to get to the next gentle saddle between Mount Cameron
and Mount Lincoln. From there it is an easy talus ascent to Lincoln's summit.
If you are feeling ambitious
, you may also summit two other fourteeners on either side of Lincoln, Mount Democrat
and Mount Bross
. This rounds out a great day of fourteeners, known as the "Decalibron"
Nothing special in the summer. Be sure to have snowshoes in any other season, unless you enjoy post-holing!