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    Mount Elbert Loop Trail

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    Very Hard
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    22.4 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    1,518 m
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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    Directions to Trailhead

    Summiting Mount Elbert is on the top of many adventure travelers’ bucket lists, and it is definitely near the top of ours! The Mount Elbert Loop Trail presents the ideal opportunity to summit Colorado’s highest peak, whilst exhibiting the beauty and diversity of the wilderness by taking hikers along a circuit of various trails, rather than a simple out and back.

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    Route Description for Mount Elbert Loop Trail

    Put your stamina to the test as you venture the Mount Elbert Loop Trail. When traveling to extreme elevations, it is important to be acclimated to the area’s altitude prior to attempting an ascent, or consider bringing supplemental oxygen. Additionally, this trek demands endurance, so make sure you are well-prepared and equipped for this taxing hike. Lastly, we highly recommended microspikes and trekking poles to safely navigate the vertiginous snow-packed terrain. Note that afternoon storms are common to the area, so try and summit the peak before noon. When hiking in the winter months, it is important to be mindful of avalanches.

    Embark on your adventure along the Mount Elbert Loop Trail from the trailhead on Halfmoon Road. From here, track southeast along the Colorado Trail Segment 11. Climbing steeply uphill almost immediately after the trailhead, you will be confronted with several sets of switchbacks. Eventually, you will meet an intersection and veer right to be diverted onto the Mount Elbert Northeast Ridge Trail. Begin your increasingly technical and steep ascent up to the summit of the impressive 14er, and once there, you will be rewarded with 360-degree panoramic views of Colorado’s mountainous wilderness.

    Revel in the alpine vistas, then take the South Mount Elbert Trail down the mountain. When you meet the path's end, turn left onto the Colorado Trail Segment 11 to head northwest, all the way back to the trailhead.

    Getting to the Mount Elbert Loop Trail Trailhead

    The Mount Elbert Loop Trail departs from the Mount Elbert Trailhead off Halfmoon Road.

    Route Information

    • Backcountry Campground

      Dispersed Backcountry Camping

    • When to do


    • Pets allowed

      Yes - On Leash

    • Family friendly


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    Mount Elbert Loop Trail Elevation Graph

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    Mount Elbert Loop Trail Reviews

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