Ascend to Adventure
Mountain climbing adventures await you in Clear Creek County. With a short drive west of Denver, you can put on your hiking boots and cross climbing a 14er off your list. Trust us, the views are always better from the top.
Four Breathtaking 14ers Near Denver
There are more than 50 stunning 14ers in Colorado and four exceptional peaks in Clear Creek County: Bierstadt, Evans, Grays, and Torreys. These 14ers range in class and difficulty and sit less than 10 miles from each other.
Although every 14er is an advanced trail, “Class 1” is the easiest and typically features a clear, direct trail. “Class 5” is the most difficult and may require technical climbing to navigate. Find the peak that best suits you:
At 14,065 ft, Mount Bierstadt is a “Class 2” 14er offering a 6.8-mile, out-and-back trail that’s rated as “difficult.”
At 14,271 ft, Mount Evans rates between “Class 2” and “Class 3,” depending on which trail you take — the West Ridge from Summit Lake trail is considered “moderate.”
At 14,278 ft, Grays Peak is a “Class 1” 14er offering an 8-mile, round-trip trail that’s rated as “moderate to difficult.”
Don’t Forget 13ers and Other Trails
How serious are your hiking goals? When it comes to 14ers, many experienced climbers don’t end their ascent unless they’ve gained 3,000 feet of elevation. Others climbers feel like making it to the summit is enough.
So while scaling a 14er is one of the most talked-about hiking goals in Colorado (and everywhere else), it can be a big challenge… and crowded.
That’s why Clear Creek recommends trekking a 13er that will reward you with equally beautiful views. Check out a couple local favorites, Square Top and Mt Sniktau for a mountaineering experience that’s just as magical (and less crowded).
Our Hiking Trails page has a detailed map and descriptions of some of the best trails in Clear Creek County with information on trail type, difficulty, and more.
Prepare for Hiking 14ers in Colorado
Safety Comes First
To make climbing your first 14er easier, try completing many different hikes of varying difficulty while learning about hiking safety. Along with taking a hiking safety course, don’t forget to print out our Back-Country Survival Guide and Emergency Information Sheet to not only get must-read tips, but commemorate the McManus Family and hikers lost to harsh terrain.
Pack the Right Gear
For every thousand feet of elevation gained, the temperature will drop 5.5 degrees, so pack for all weather conditions. Also, a trail map, flashlight, firestarter, blankets, extra water, snacks, sunscreen, and a compass or GPS is necessary. No flip flops please (seriously).
Consider Snow and Ice
Remember that, during the winter, hiking over compacted snow can be dangerous. Snowshoes or crampons may be required.
Beware of Avalanches
Avalanches are a major risk. Even with proper rescue equipment and training, there is a one-in-five chance of dying if caught in a significant avalanche. Read these avalanche safety tips.
Getting in Shape
Climbing a 14er takes physical endurance. Some trails are up to 20 miles long and can take more than 10 hours to complete.
Other Hikes in Clear Creek County
Hiking a 14er can be a big deal. There are many other great trails in Clear Creek County — check them out today!