Argentine Pass (13,207′), Front Range

Argentine Pass (13,207′), Front Range

Argentine Pass (13,207′), Front Range

Argentine Pass is the highest named vehicle-accessible pass in Colorado. Vehicle travel is only possible on the Georgetown side of the pass (during the summer months) by a four-wheel drive vehicle with high-clearance. The trail on the Horseshoe Basin side is only accessible by foot or by mountain bike. The pass is also the highest point on the American Discovery Trail, perched on the Continental Divide.

The pass has many great hiking destinations, and provides a ridgeline walk to Gray’s Peak (14,270′), a great alternative to busy Stevens Gulch if you have a 4×4.

Elevation Map Pancake Rocks

Weather

GPX with Elevation

Video Tour

Trail Directions

Take exit 228 from I-25W, go under the freeway and take a right (west) at the 4 way stop. Follow the signs to Guanella Pass through the historic downtown area of Georgetown. 

About 2.5 miles out of Georgetown watch for a small parking lot on the right side of one of the switchbacks. This will begin the road to Argentine Pass, FR248.1. As of this writing, there are no signs to the pass, so bring a map.

Trailhead Directions

Mt Antero Rd (13,800′) , Sawatch Range

Mt Antero Rd (13,800′) , Sawatch Range

Mt Antero Rd (13,800′) , Sawatch Range

Mt Antero is one of only a handful of 14,000′ peaks that has a road that travels to within a short distance of the summit.  The road up the mountain is difficult, rough and rocky, requiring four-wheel drive, eventually topping out at 13,800′. From the end of the road at point 13,800 it’s a 1/2 mile and 470′ scramble to the summit.

In 1881, a Salida man by the name of Nelson Wanemaker discovered gems high on Mt Antero. His discovery was publicized a few years later, and the mountain became a famous collecting area for aquamarine, phenacite, fluorite, topaz, and smoky quartz crystals. It has the highest concentration of these minerals anywhere in the US. With findings far above timberline, this is the highest known gem field in the lower 48.

The Sawatch Mountain Range is home to fourteen other 14,000′ peaks, such as Huron Peak, La Plata Peak, Missouri Mountain, and the highest peak in the Rocky Mountains, Mt Elbert.

Weather

GPS Route with Elevation

From the end of the very steep road at 13,800′, it’s a 1/2 mile and 470′ climb to the 14,269′ summit of Mt Antero

Video Tour

Route Directions

Turn onto #277 jeep road (Baldwin Gultch) and drive 3 miles to a road junction at 10,850′. Turn left on the #278 road and cross Baldwin Creek.

Continue another mile to tree line as it climb’s Mt Antero’s west slopes. Stay left on 278A at the next 2 junction’s, reaching 13,200′.

From 13,200′ to 13,800′, the road becomes extremely steep with hairpin
switchbacks. You may want to consider parking here as most vehicles
wont make it. Continue up the steep south side to reach the end of the road, Point 13,800′.

Trailhead Directions