Mt Yale East Ridge

Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area, Colorado

Distance1.8mi
Elevation Gain2,430ft
Trailhead Elevation11,906ft
Top14,175ft
Elevation Min/Max11906/14175ft
Elevation Start/End11906/11906ft

Mt Yale East Ridge

Mt. Yale East Ridge is a hiking trail in , Colorado. It is within Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area. It is 1.8 miles long and begins at 11,906 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 3.8 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,430 feet. The trail ends near Mount Yale (elevation 14,199 feet). This trail connects with the following: Colorado Trail (Segment 13).

Mt. Yale East Ridge Professional Reviews and Guides

"Mount Yale is one of fifteen 14,000-foot peaks in Colorado’s Sawatch Mountain Range. The range is a favorite hiking area, and writers frequently refer to it with whimsical phrases such as “the pinnacle of the North American continent”, or “the roof of the Continental Divide”.

The truth is that this 80-mile-long stretch of mountains contains more fourteeners than any other range in Colorado, and all of them, including the three highest peaks in the state, are relatively easy class-2 climbs. This abundance of climbing opportunities combined with good trails and plenty of scenic beauty combine to make the Sawatch Range a favorite among hikers."

"Mount Yale rises to a height of 14,194 feet above Middle Cottonwood Creek, commanding a vast sweep of the central Sawatch Range. The hike begins on the trail to Browns Pass, then follows a well-beaten side trail to timberline and a steep, primitive route the remaining 2,000 vertical feet to the summit of Mount Yale.

It can readily be completed in a single day by hard-core hikers who are acclimated to high altitudes, but less experienced hikers may want to camp below the timberline and attempt the summit as a shorter day. In either case, visitors bound for the summit should start out in the twilight hours in the morning so that the round trip to the summit can be completed before the afternoon thundershowers hit. Although an established trail runs almost all the way to the summit, the steep and primitive nature of the final pitches and the scrambling required to gain the summit give this hike some of the flavor of a mountaineering trek. Expect crowds on the weekends."

"Yale’s 2-mile east ridge is an exciting scramble that prolongs the fun of hiking on a narrow ridge. Exposure is minimal, but the route is thrilling nonetheless."

Mt. Yale East Ridge Reviews

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7/7/2018
The trail was beautiful! It was a little steep at times, but do-able
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7/4/2017
Beautiful
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7/16/2009
When the trail reaches treeline, the average incline increases noticeably. It remains like that all the way up to the saddle and can become an arduous climb. I highly recommend trekking poles. I didn’t have them when I first attempted Yale in 2008. In 2009 I did use them and they made all the difference for me, going up AND down. When you finally reach the saddle, the summit ridge offers a boulder scramble to the top that is a lot of fun. Much of the trail’s worn and eroded areas are undergoing restoration this summer of 2010. This is a great trail. It is challenging, but start plenty early in the AM so that 1) you can beat the summer afternoon thunderstorms and 2) you can take your time and enjoy the hike.
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8/13/2007
Hiked Mt. Yale Sunday 8/5/07 with 2 other friends. This was my 5th 14er. The weather was super -- mild and not windy at all. We started out at 5:10am, made good time to the footbridge at the 1 mile point (1/2 hour), but took a very long time to summit at 10:50am compared to others on the same trail. We immediately proceeded down as the weather was starting to roll in, stopping for about 20 minutes to eat lunch on the way down. We arrived safe and sound back at the car with rumbling in the background at 2:40pm. While having lunch in B.V., it started to rain about 1/2 hour after completing the trip.
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8/8/2006
Mt. Yale was my first 14er that I ever climbed, in fact, it was my first time being at such a high altitude. To give you a gauge, I was 20 years old at the time, in fairly good shape. We did not hike car to summit all in one day; we hiked to base camp one day, the 2nd day we woke up at about 6:30am and started our hike around 7am. It took us about 9 or 10 hours round trip. The hike was wonderful. I would definitely recommend hiking poles, because the footing is quite silty in some areas, and is washed out in others. Once you reach timberline, which is a feat in itself, you have quite a ways to go. We weren't timing it exactly, but I remember it taking the better part of a day to make it through the switch backs, and then the climbing begins. I was a bit weary as to climbing large boulders up to 14,196 ft. but it was definitely worth it. Just make SURE that you stick to the trail, and you will be find. And stay to the right. I had to run down part of the way after we made it too summit, because the incline is too great to walk down and your footing won't hold. Mt. Yale is a great hike, I would recommend it to anyone! In fact, I made a second trip to Yale in 2007 as well!
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10/1/2005
Whew! Quite an effort! Very steep in the top half, also trail is very eroded, lots of loose dirt/gravel making for a slippery descent. I highly recommend having poles, especially for the descent. Had to run in some places because it was just too steep to walk. Here are some milestones/times. I am a 54 year old man, about 20 pounds overweight but otherwise in very good condition, so compare to your condition accordingly: Trail split: 33 minutes Log bridge over creek: 1 hour Short level just below timberline: 1 hour 28 minutes Saddle: 3 hours 12 minutes Summit: 3 hours 45 minutes Keep to the right scrambling over the boulders above the saddle.
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Mt. Yale East Ridge Photos

Trail Information

Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area
Nearby City
Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area
Parks
Moderate to Difficult
Skill Level
Salida District, San Isabel National Forest
Local Contacts
USGS Mount Yale
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Oct 2018