Pikes Peak
(from Crags Campground)

23 Jun 2001 - by Andrea Eddy

I arrived at Crags Campground just before sunset on Friday, June 22 and walked up the trail to make sure I could find the metal pipes that are the key to the route. The three pipes of varying sizes sticking up from the ground are on the left side (north) of the trail about 100 yards from the sign in, and two of them have lids. Just past the pipes there is a fork around a cluster of trees. Taking the right fork, you'll now see a purposefully built log bridge that crosses the north creek on the right. As you continue up the drainage there is a sign with an arrow to Devil's playground, as the final indication that you are on the right trail.

The next morning (June 23), I started at 6:30 a.m. and was surprised to see a strong trail all the way to Devil's Playground. The only difficult piece of route finding was trying to find Point 13,363 and then start climbing the talus slope at 13,400 (Roach book). Point 13,363 is marked by three wildlife education signs on the road for the drivers. After seeing these on the west side of the road, look for a small wooden sign that says QUARTZ on the east side of the road. Just north of this sign is where to start climbing the talus. According to one of the patrol officers, there is no trail leading up the talus which we couldn't tell because there was a fresh dusting of snow.

Arriving on the summit at 10:15 a.m., there was already a full parking lot and crowded summit house. After staying on top until 11:00 a.m., we began our descent and were luckily into the trees when an electrical storm started around 12:30 p.m. There was never any precipitation just thunder and lightening we never saw from our locations. After a foot soak in the cold creek, we were back at the cars at 1:30 p.m.

Besides the dusting of snow on the summit, there were two small snow slopes that we had to traverse above 12,000 feet which already had kick steps. An ice axe was never needed.


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