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Colorado's Highest Point - Mt. Elbert

Photos Of My Hike To Mt. Elbert (Elevation 14,433 Feet) From The Standard Trail Route

Mt. Elbert, CO

Mt. Elbert ... the tallest mountain in Colorado. This one has been marked off the checklist! :)

After getting excited from visiting high points in New Jersey and Florida, I realized that I probably needed to stand on Colorado's loftiest point before I went bonkers with visiting others. One of these weekends, I will likely visit the high points in Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma. At 14,433 feet above sea level, Mount Elbert stands as the highest "14er" (among 54) and is the highest point in the entire state of Colorado. Only Mt. Whitney in California and Mt. McKinley (Denali) in Alaska are state high points higher than this one.

I traveled on Mount Elbert's standard route on its northeast ridge. The trailhead is located close to Emerald Lake in Lake County and is reachable with a low-clearance passenger vehicle like mine. Visit for helpful directions and route descriptions.


Mt. Elbert Trail
Along The Way

My first picture was taken right here, where the Mt. Elbert Trail begins from the Colorado Trail.

Mt. Elbert Trail
Mt. Elbert Trail
Mt. Elbert, CO
Three photos as I journeyed up the trail.
Mt. Elbert Trail At this spot, I turned back and saw much of the trail I had walked on. If you click the adjacent photo to see it in a larger size, you can see Emerald Lake. Just a short distance from the lake and up the canyon, there is a gray spot among the trees. That is the trailhead parking lot.
Mt. Elbert Trail
Mt. Elbert Trail
Mt. Elbert, CO
This large summit above timberline (top and middle) is the second "false summit" on this route.

BOTTOM: Finally, the actual summit of Mt Elbert comes into view.

Mt. Elbert The Mt. Elbert Summit

Arrival on the Colorado High Point.

Mt. Massive Mountains
South Halfmoon Area La Plata Peak
Mountains Twin Lakes, CO
Mt. Elbert
Seven views from the top of Mt. Elbert. (I go counterclockwise.)

TOP LEFT: Looking north, Mt. Massive and the North Halfmoon valley.

TOP RIGHT: Looking toward the South Halfmoon valley with a plethora of peaks behind.

SECOND LEFT: There is a 4-wheel drive that will take you all the way into the basin of this South Halfmoon valley. The Iron Mike Mine is near the end of the road. (More mountains in background)

SECOND RIGHT: Facing the southwest, there are plenty of peaks out there. La Plata Peak, another 14er, stands prominently left of center.

THIRD LEFT: Facing south toward the Collegiate Peaks and other mountains in the Sawatch Range.

THIRD RIGHT: The southeasterly view of the Twin Lakes and the village of Twin Lakes.

BOTTOM: Facing east. More of the summit of Mt. Elbert. Battling the sun was difficult, but you can at least see Turquoise Lake on the left.

Mt. Elbert
Mt. Elbert
Two photos of myself on the Mt. Elbert.

Some of my other 14er hikes: Pikes Peak Mt. Democrat, Mt. Lincoln, Mt. Bross Mt. Princeton Mt. Sherman Mt. Yale Quandary Peak Mt. Belford Mt. Sneffels Mt. Antero

Snowmass Mountain
La Plata Peak
Three mountains of interest to me.

TOP: Snowmass Mountain could be see way out there, and notice it is still largely covered in snow. That's why it's called "Snowmass!" ;)

MIDDLE: A closer view of La Plata Peak.

BOTTOM: I zoomed-in as much as I could to capture Mt. Princeton. The red arrow points to its faintly defined peak way out there. We'll see ... I might put this photo of my Mt. Princeton web site. :)

Green Pond
Miscellaneous Photos

Mt. Elbert is most recognizable by its distinct cliff on its eastern face. At the bottom of that basin is this green pond.

Mt. Massive, CO
Mt. Massive, CO
Mt. Massive
As I traveled on the trail, I kept noticing Mt. Massive to the north. Here are three assorted photos of the mountain.
Mt. Elbert Snow!
To all my friends and acquaintences who live in wonderfully hot places like Arizona, Texas and Georgia, look at this large patch of snow in July! :)
Wildflowers Wildflowers
Wildflowers Wildflowers
The wildflowers are at their peak, and this particular yellow flower were all around above timberline.

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