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  • Writer's pictureJoanna Lee

UN 12,792

Updated: May 12, 2023

October 8, 2021

UN 12792 (12,792 feet)

Route: COTREX/CalTopo

4.2 miles; 1,223 feet elevation gain

1 hour 4 minutes

I was driving home from Silverton and decided to detour over Cottonwood pass to see the leaves changing and to do a little trail run. This trail is straight forward, well marked and has amazing views. You park at the top of Cottonwood/on the continental divide. You climb quickly from the parking area on switchbacks to the first viewpoint. You have beautiful views of the collegiate peaks from here. You then go downhill for a while before heading up to the summit. The continental divide trail doesn't go exactly to the summit so you do have to go off trail to follow the ridgeline to the peak. It is a steep little climb, so I walked most of it, but all grassy tundra. From the summit you can see stunning views of multiple lakes, including the instagram famous Lost Lake.

Highly recommend this route if you're in the area and looking to stretch your legs. The views are stunning and you can make it however long you would like. You can continue to follow the CTD trail along the ridgeline to multiple other peaks !

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