Family Weekender: Denver

Grays Peak
By Bill Scanlon
  |  Gorp.com
Go Guide: Gray's Peak
Activity: Hiking
 
Age Levels: 10 and up (younger kids can certainly try this climb, but they may not make it to the summit)
 
Hours from Denver: 2
 
Getting There: From Denver, drive west on Interstate 70 to Bakerville, exit 221 just before the Eisenhower Tunnel. Turn left over the interstate and drive south 3.5 miles on a steep but wide dirt road to Stevens Mine at 11,300 feet. Park at the small lot.
 
Contact: For more trail information, see www.mountainweb.com/Colorados14ers/grayspeak.htm or www.hikingincolorado.org/gray.htm.
 
Extra Treats: If breathing the air at 14,270 feet hasn't exhausted the kids-or the parents-try bagging a second 14er. Descend from the summit northwest 600 feet to the saddle connecting Grays with Torreys Peak. Another half mile of strenuous hiking gets you to the top of Torreys, 14,267 feet above sea level
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There are plenty of great 13,000-foot peaks to climb along Colorado's Front Range. But if the kids want to impress their schoolmates in the fall, they can try to tackle one of the easiest of the state's 54 peaks that rise more than 14,000 feet above sea level.

Take the iron bridge across a stream and follow a trail that zigzags upward 3.5 miles. Eight hundred feet from the summit, the trail forks. Continue another half mile to the top of Grays Peak.

Congratulate everyone on a job well done and enjoy the panorama of mountains marking the continental divide. To the southwest are the popular ski areas, Breckenridge and Keystone.


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