Triad Ridge (alt. 9,630 feet) - Chaffee County, CO
My Hike To The Summit Of Triad Ridge Near Buena Vista, Colorado - June 6, 2010
I doubt there are Colorado vacationers who dream of summiting Triad Ridge. Neither are there locals.
Triad Ridge is located on the south side of Trout Creek, and although most don't know its name,
it has some prominence to the southeast of Johnson Village
and Buena Vista. This is
a mountain that does not receive much hiking traffic!
How I Got There: From Johnson Village, I traveled east on Highways 24 & 285 and turned right (south)
on Chaffee County Road 301. I traveled 1.5 miles on C.R. 301 and turned left (east) on a dirt road that leads to
the entrance of Carnage Canyon and
A gate is often across the road. It can be undone but be sure to close it after proceeding through. This area can
also be access from the east via Chaffee County Road 300.
You definitely should have a quality topographical map, if you explore this region.
This was a great hike, of course, because any day in the mountains is a good one. However,
I must admit that realistically, I doubt I will do this climb again. I'm probably a rare character: I
climb these local peaks because they are there and I frequently look at them as a
However, if a friend asked me to suggest a local hike, Triad Ridge would be low on my list.
Buena Vista, Colorado
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|Triad Ridge in Chaffee County, Colorado - Elevation 9,630 Feet
Facing east with Johnson Village, CO in the foreground. The red arrow points to the summit - the goal of today's hike.
My hike began at the mouth of Carnage Canyon. This canyon has a road that is considered to be one of the
most extreme 4-wheel drive roads in all of America ...
||... This photo provides a good example of how crazy this road is.
Only the most extreme 4-wheel driver would dare to take it on.
The sign on the right makes a stern warning, which I'll repost here:
Treat Lightly - Stay On Trail - Body Damage Likely - Winch Out Exit - Recovery Tools -
Two Lockers - 39's Minimum - First Aid & Spill Kit - Winch
||Winching off trees is prohibited. Instead, many green posts are drilled into rocks.
||One very rocky part of the road.
Here's are YouTube videos showing 4-wheeling madness in Carnage Canyon:Carnage Canyon 4-Wheeling (3:58)
Carnage Canyon Moon Buggy (9:18)
Vehicle Tips in Carnage Canyon (0:53)
My pages of 4-wheeling experiences:Tincup Pass
South Cottonwood Canyon
Last Dollar Road
||Climbing the ridge, the view to the south which includes the
Sangre De Cristo Mountains,
Mt. Ouray, Bald Mountain,
and Ruby Mountain.
Highway 285 can be seen on the right, as it
travels south toward Salida and Poncha Springs.
||I turned back to take in the stunning
mountain scenery. Mt. Princeton is on the right. 14ers Mt. Shavano,
Tabeguache Peak and Mt. Antero are on the left.
||This was a gnarly climb! Near a false summit,
I contended with ugly and steep talus. Folks, Triad Ridge does not have a trail
and I did a lot of scrambling as I climbed upward. I would call today's
hike adventuresome, but I wouldn't use the word "fun."
|Summit of Triad Ridge - 9,620 Feet
There is no obvious summit on Triad Ridge. However, my topographical map marked
it at 9,620 feet on the north side of the ridge. As I wandered on the ridge, this did seem to be the highest point.
TOP: From the summit, the view facing south across the ridge.
||A beautiful view of the Arkansas River Valley.
Mt. Princeton and Mt. Yale are in the background.
The lake in the foreground (left of center) is private and manmade.
||Facing northeast. The town of Buena Vista, Colorado can been seen in the valley.
||Triad Ridge is most noticeable as one drives on Highway 24 & 285
between Trout Creek Pass and
Adjacent is a shot of the road as it snakes toward Trout Creek Pass.
Across in the background is
Limestone Ridge, which I hiked last year.
||Coming down, I captured this nice view of Mt. Antero.
One last photo from the summit.
I zoomed-in somewhat to give a better view of Johnson Village,
the prison complex and Buena Vista. It was great to be up there! :)
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