Savage Peak – 13,139

RT Length:  9.24 miles

Elevation Gain: 3314’

The storms this week have put a damper on my hiking plans.  Most of the peaks on my immediate goal list are too long to complete before the storms hit, so when I saw the weather was good near Savage Peak I jumped on the chance to get in a quick weekday summit. I drove past the Missouri Lakes trailhead and drove the 4WD road to the stream crossing. I didn’t need to put my truck into 4WD (which was good, because it’s still not working).  There were some large puddles to splash through on the way in.

I parked at the stream crossing, and wore my sandals to cross the river and start the trail

The road curves around a bit, but you can just go straight up the hillside and pick up the road from there.  The stream was only a couple of inches deep.  You could drive across it, but it only saves you about 100 feet of hiking, so it’s not really worth it.

I followed the road for about half a mile to the diversion dam, where the road ended and the Missouri Lakes trail began.

This was a class 1 trail that followed Missouri Creek.  I loved how easy it was to follow up and into the basin, crossing the creek several times on sturdy bridges.

I followed the trail west.  At about 11,000’ I came upon avalanche debris.  The trail was well maintained and easy to follow through the debris.

This is also a good place to get a visual of the route.  This is where you’ll be aiming.

I continued following the well defined trail to 11330’, then left the trail to head south towards the ridge, aiming for a rocky ramp that hugged the side of the mountain. 

Once on the ramp, I followed it east to the base of the ridge.

At the base of the ridge I turned right, and followed the ridge west

Here’s the first good view of Savage Peak

This is a simple, class 2 ridge hike to the summit.

There is a small false summit just before the true summit

I summited Savage Peak at 7:40am

Savage Peak: 

There were some great views of Missouri Lakes

I left a summit register and headed back the way I’d come

Here’s a look down the ridge

Here’s how I exited the ridge

And headed back into the basin

Back in the basin I headed northeast until I linked back up with the Missouri Lakes Trail.

And followed the trail back through the landslide area and across the bridges

Once back on the 4WD road I followed it back down to the stream, and my truck on the other side.

I made it back to my truck at 10am, making this a 9.24 mile hike with 3314’ of elevation gain in 5 hours, just as the storms were rolling in.

Now, off to visit some Hot Springs and get that back window fixed. 

Author: Laura M Clark

Laura has summited over 500 peaks above 13,000' solo, including being the first woman to solo summit all of the Colorado 14ers, as well as the centennials. After each hike, she writes trip reports for each one and publishes them on her blog, which is read by fans all over the world. Author of Wild Wanderer: Summiting Colorado’s 200 Highest Peaks, which is available to purchase on Amazon.

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