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Ptarmigan Trail (#35)

Intermediate
 4.5 (20) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A climb to the summit of Ptarmigan Mountain


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Map Key

13.2

Miles

21.3

KM

Out and Back

12,489' 3,807 m

High

9,116' 2,779 m

Low

3,536' 1,078 m

Up

3,536' 1,078 m

Down

10%

Avg Grade (6°)

34%

Max Grade (19°)

Dogs Off-leash

Features Fall Colors · Views · Wildflowers

Overview

There are two ways to access Ptarmigan Trail, one is by Angler Mountain Trail and the other is starting from the Ptarmigan Trailhead up above the highway. If you start from the Ptarmigan Trailhead it is slightly longer but beautiful nonetheless.

Description

It starts with a steep climb crossing a residential road and then through a large meadow. Just before you hit the one mile mark, you'll enter into the trees and descend for about 1/4 of a mile before the powerlines. Cross under the powerlines back into thicker forest and there you'll find the trail begins to ascend again.

After a couple of miles, you'll pass Angler Mountain Trail on your right intersecting with Ptarmigan Trail. A half mile after this junction is a bench that overlooks the Gore Range on your left. This is a nice turning around point if you want a shorter hike. But, if you are ready to summit, continue on up around the next corner. This is where it starts to get steep, but the trail is still nice for hiking. The switchbacks start at this point, they are gradual, for the most part. Around mile 4.5 you'll arrive at treeline. Continue straight up the trail, and you'll reach an intersection with Ptarmigan Pass Trail and Ptarmigan Peak Trail. Continue straight on Ptarmigan Peak Trail. Another mile and you'll reach the summit! Now for the fun part, turn around and hike back down to the car, making sure to stay left at the Angler Mountain Trail intersection.

Flora & Fauna

Many wildflowers, Pika and maybe a marmot or two towards the summit!

Shared By:

Chelsea Gribbin

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 20 votes

#487

Overall
  4.5 from 20 votes
5 Star
55%
4 Star
40%
3 Star
5%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#103

in Colorado

#487

Overall
271 Views Last Month
19,859 Since Mar 14, 2015
Intermediate

0%
0%
74%
21%
5%
0%

Photos

From the bench on Angler Mountain Trail looking south
Mar 14, 2015 near Silvert…, CO
Looking south towards Dillon Reservoir at what I just ran up.
Mar 14, 2015 near Silvert…, CO
Lovely aspen forest after the initial difficult, steep stretch of trail
Jul 19, 2015 near Silvert…, CO
Looking east over a snowfield in August - Ptarmigan Mountain Trail
Mar 14, 2015 near Silvert…, CO
The view from treeline is remarkable.
Jul 19, 2015 near Silvert…, CO
A lovely display of Rocky Mountain Columbine - our state flower.
Jul 19, 2015 near Silvert…, CO

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Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
Bad / Closed 16 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Jun 27, 2021
Spencer V
Turned around at first look out point. First 1/2 mile or so is pretty steep but pretty easy the rest of the trail. Trail in good condition. 4.8mi — 2h 30m
Nov 22, 2020
Dan Shanley
Met Alex Majewski. Made it up the the bench and back down. 5mi — 2h 29m
Jun 21, 2020
Theresa Saenz
13.2mi — 5h 45m
Aug 18, 2019
Patrick Csongei
my strava phone app recorded it as about half a mile shorter each way. incredible views and weather today 12mi — 4h 20m
Jul 28, 2019
Rob Hirsch
12.4mi — 6h 48m
Jul 27, 2019
Meaghan O.
13.2mi — 7h 45m
Jul 22, 2019
Rondi K
Jun 7, 2019
Mark Stratton