Colorado 13er: Corbett Peak

My first day back in Ridgway, I set out to climb Corbett Peak just south of Ridgway and promptly got my jeep stuck in a creek. Almost a week later, I had another opportunity to make a bid for the peak. I was sort of skeptical about actually being able to summit because the Sneffles range was fairly cloaked in dark purple clouds but I’d passed on an opportunity to climb it a couple of days earlier and the clouds lifted mid-morning so I figured worst case scenario it’d be a chance to get in a good hike below treeline.

County Road 5

The rain didn’t really seem to start until I hit the trees and stopped before I got to about 11,000’—what perfect timing! As I emerged from the trees, the skies had cleared and I realized I was actually going to be able to go for the summit!

Beth just below treeline on Corbett Peak

 

I always love hitting treeline; the climb always seems to become easier when I have views of all the mountains around me. This was my view out to the east:

San Juan Mountains

 

And then to the north:

Ridgway, Colorado

 

Corbett’s false summit from the ridge line (about 12,000′ feet):

Corbett Peak

 

I noticed some deer (maybe bighorn sheep? I didn’t have binoculars with me…) hanging out in this snowfield to the north of the mountain. They were clearly happy to have a cool place to be:

Basin below Corbett

Just below the false summit

 

This is the view from the false summit where I dropped my pack and made a mad dash for the true summit (on the left). It was a way sketchier scramble than I’d expected and while the clouds still looked pretty benign I didn’t want to wait around for them to become more menacing. Whitehouse looked pretty impressive from the summit though, and I really want to make it up there soon!

True summit and Whitehouse Mountain

 

After the summit, I headed downhill as quickly as was safe and hit tree line about 12:15. I probably should have started an hour earlier but the weather totally held out for me!

East side of Corbett Peak

San Juan Mountains

Clouds rolling in as I got back to treeline

 

I’m not a fan of grazing practices on our public lands but these cows looked so happy that I couldn’t help but smile.

Cows in the aspens

 

Almost back to the car I got a great view of Corbett (including the true summit) and had a chance to smile at my 3,700′ of elevation gain!

 

Corbett Peak

FSJ in the aspens

3 thoughts on “Colorado 13er: Corbett Peak”

  1. Hey there,
    I can’t seem to find directions anywhere on the best place to park and summit Corbett peak. Are there marked trails? Or did you just blaze your own up the ridge?

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