Colorado Guy Twin Lakes, Colorado

Sugarloaf Mountain - Nathrop, Colorado

(An Adventure Up a Chaffee County Mountain: Sugarloaf Mountain (alt. 8,406 feet) - June 10, 2008)

Sugarloaf Mountain, CO

Sugarloaf Mountain in Nathrop, Colorado ... Now THIS is a mountain that does not get much respect!

Sitting at 8,406 feet at the summit, Sugarloaf Mountain does have some prominence in the mountain range to the east of Buena Vista and Nathrop. As seen in the adjacent photo, Sugarloaf Mountain is the imposing mountain with pinions northeast of Nathrop. You absolutely can not miss it if you are driving on Highway 285 in or near Nathrop!

Now there are many mountains in the world that are named "Sugarloaf Mountain." Do a web search for Sugarloaf Mountain and you will learn there is a very well-known mountain in Brazil, another peak in Maryland and a residential community in Florida with this name. In Colorado alone, there are two semi-prominent Sugarloaf Mountains, one near the Indian Peaks and the other in the Colorado Springs area. It is a shame that this mountain - and dare I say "Nathrop's mountain" - has such a boring and ordinary name.

Special thanks to Shannon Tucker for coming along with me and "bushwacking" to the top. There is no trail to the summit of this mountain and with the help of my topographical map, we hiked from Arnold Gulch up the NNE face of the mountain.


Sugarloaf Mountain, CO
Sugarloaf Mountain - At The Summit

Shannon stands on the tallest rock at the summit. Sugarloaf's altitude is 8,406 feet which uh ... not that he or I want to sound like an altitude snob but ... the mountain's summit is 416 feet below his home in Buena Vista. ;)

Mt. Antero
Mt. Princeton
Mt. Princeton and Mt. Yale
We began out hike at 6:30 a.m. and reached the summit by 7 a.m. The morning's sunlight from the east touched perfectly on the Sawatch Mountains to the west!

TOP: Mt. Antero

MIDDLE: Mt. Princeton and the Arkansas River.

BOTTOM: Mt. Princeton (left) and Mt. Yale (right).

Mt. Princeton
We spent some time sitting around and talking. There was one particular boulder that stuck out with a grand view of Mt. Antero and Mt. Princeton.

In my photo, don't I look like I may have been drunk or trying to imitate Stevie Wonder with my head tilted like that? It looks like I might have been singing! :p)

Shannon, by the way, has gone on other adventures with me ... or perhaps I should say I have gone with him ;) ...

  • Quandary Peak
  • St. Elmo, CO
  • Mineral Basin
  • Cottonwood Pass Road
  • Mountain Shadow We thought the shadow of the mountain directly to the east was interesting. We moved and jumped up and down to try to affect the shadow, but were not successful.
    Nathrop, CO
    Mt. Ouray
    TOP: A close-up of the town of Nathrop.

    BOTTOM: A broader view of Mt. Ouray with Nathrop in the foreground.

    Luna Bar This was the tasty Luna Bar I ate.
    Rainbow Rock Looking down, I photographed "Rainbow Rock" - a popular place for people to rock climb.
    Sugarloaf Mountain, CO Me standing on the tallest boulder on the mountain, looking south toward Shannon. The Sangre De Cristo Mountains are way out there to the left.
    Sugarloaf Mountain, CO The sun was right in my eyes facing east. Here is one photo.

    Sugarloaf Mountain, CO
    Heading Up and Down The Mountain

    We were driving in his truck at 6:02 a.m. and headed toward Arnold Gulch. Sugarloaf Mountain is the mountain on the right.

    36 Degrees It was a chilly morning. Shannon's truck temperature gauge read 36 degrees!
    Mt. Antero and Mt. Princeton Up we went with a view of Mt. Antero and Mt. Princeton.
    Arnold Gulch, CO Heading up the north side of Sugarloaf Mountain, I looked back to capture Arnold Gulch. Look at all those campers! This particular area is a popular campground for raft guides who work here only for the summer.
    Cactus Cactus Two blooming cacti.
    Mt. Yale Up the slope we went! (Mt. Yale to the left)
    Buena Vista, CO Near the top of the mountain, the view to the north. The town of Buena Vista can be seen in those white dots way out there.
    Rocks Coming back down, we came across this large rock formation.
    Cogan's Pit And near the bottom, we walked through a little gulch that had so many rafting workers camping. This area is sometimes referred to as "Cogan's Pit."

    Sugarloaf Mountain, CO
    Various Photos of Sugarloaf Mountain

    Yesterday afternoon, I made a quick ride to Nathrop to snap various pictures of the mountain.

    LEFT: The mountain as I stood on Chaffee County Road 300.

    Sugarloaf Mountain, CO Directly west of the mountain, as I sat in my car on the shoulder of Highway 285.
    Nathrop, Colorado Sugarloaf Mountain stands to the left at the junction of Chaffee County Road 162 and Highway 285. (Chaffee County Road 286 runs adjacent to the highway.)
    Ruby Mountain, Colorado A pretty picture. Sugarloaf Mountain, Bald Mountain and Ruby Mountain frequently get mixed up ... here is the layout!
    Nathrop, Colorado Inside Nathrop.