Day 1: Hike approx 7 and a half miles on trail 745 to base camp near Rito Alto Lake
Day 2: Hike approx 6 miles out and back on trails 745 and 747 and standard route to Rito Alto
Day 3: Hike out approx 7 and a half miles on trail 745 to trailhead
One vehicle left at Rito Alto Creek trailhead
This centennial 13er stands proud in the heart of the Sangre de Cristo range. It’s views alone rival that of any peak in this mountain range. A rugged, seldom used trail will bring us to some of the most primitive terrain in Colorado.
Day one: We will begin our trek from the Rito Alto Creek trailhead at 8,500ft, following the creek closely for the first 3 and a half miles until we encounter a blow down in a meadowy area. From here the trail switchbacks up 500ft to avoid the dead fall. Shortly after our detour we will descend back to the creek and will eventually come to Sliding falls. Another 2 or so miles will bring us to our basecamp at a trail junction at 11,000ft. We will be at the foot of Rito Alto, which will give us plenty of time to take in the beauty and grandeur of this mountain.
Day two: With plenty of terrain to ascend we will plan to begin our trek by 6am. In about a mile and a half Rito Alto Lake will come into view (a hidden oasis in this remote area). From here we will make the 1,700ft/2 and a half mile climb up to Hermit pass. From here the terrain up to the summit is gradual, mostly on tundra and rocks. From the summit enjoy views deep into the heart of Colorado, South to the border of New Mexico, East into the serene Wet Mountain valley, and West to the rugged San Juan range.