Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Easiest 14ers Near the Front Range

One of the most common questions on message boards is always: What is the easiest 14er? Or Which 14er is a good first climb for a beginner? Or What 14er is close to Denver?

The two 14ers that I suggest a beginner start with to get a taste of altitude on their first 14er hike is Quandary or Bierstadt.

The Quandary standard route up the east ridge is a nice hike. It is a semi gradual slope all the way up the ridge to the top. You can follow a trail (and often a line of people) all the way to the summit. The trail head is located south of Breckenridge just off of highway 9. More info available here.

Mount Bierstadt is an easy climb from the West Slopes accessible from Guanella Pass. This is a nice easy hike with no exposure. The trail is good and the terrain is easy for most beginners. The trail head is on Guanella Pass Road south of Georgetown. More info available here.

I would suggest either of these two to get a taste of climbing Fourteeners. Other easy peaks include Mount Sherman, Mount Elbert, Handies Peak, Grays, and Torreys.

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