Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Bison Peak- the Magical Rock Garden

Bison Peak 12,431'- Lost Creek Wilderness
From Ute Creek Trailhead
~10 miles RT, 3,700' of gain
Camera Used: Nikon D5100 with 18-55mm lens
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4.4

This mountain is only 2 hours from Colorado Springs and has pavement up to the trailhead. Yes, in case you missed that, Taryall Rd is apparently fully paved now. It's in the Lost Creek Wilderness, which is both close to Denver, and not at all lacking in varied and interesting terrain.

Immediately after starting you cross a nice bridge

Wildflowers abound

The famous tree bridge

The hint of awesome things to come

The feeling when you get here is so great

Looking at the monolith  on the summit plateau

The summit is back there somewhere

Getting closer to the summit

No trail, but the path is obvious

Nearing the summit, there is a trail going to the top
Despite what you may be thinking, the summit is easy to climb to, really only being class 2. There is nothing difficult required to summit this peak.

Looking SW from the summit

Looking North, there are more rocks around

Beard power

Look at all the fun to be had here

We spent a good 45 minutes climbing on rocks and roaming around the summit area just having a good time and checking things out. You really shouldn't rush the experience once you've put in the effort to get here.

doing some climbing

"The Grotto"

Standing on a little pinnacle

We squeezed through this crevice on the way down, just for fun

More fun rocks to the south

Looking again at the monolith

Looking back at the summit

Perfect day in the mountains

There can be a lot of sun on the trail in the afternoon

Very nice meadows down lower

Getting close to the end

A nice sight to see
This is a great trip. The trail is nice the whole way to the summit plateau, the trailhead is easy to access, and the rock garden is fantastic. I recommend you check this out if you are looking for a change of pace from your usual 13ers and 14ers.  It's really just class 2 with limitless class 3+ potential in the summit area.  You can do this as a day hike or make a trip out of it to fully explore the area. After all, McCurdy mountain is just next door.