Antero Peak & Cronin Peak
Date:July 30, 2011
Elevation:Antero Peak - 14,269'
Cronin Peak - 13,870'
Trail:West Slope via Baldwin Gulch
Distance:9.28 miles round trip
Elevation Gain:3,489 ft
Difficulty:Class 2
Time it took us:7 hrs 38 min

Travis and I had planned for a long weekend down south hiking Wetterhorn, Uncompaghre and Handies peak, but he had a bike crash while playing at Winter Park and broke his thumb the weekend before, so we decided to stay closer to home and hike Antero Peak. We took the ATV, parked the big truck at the bottom of the hill, loaded all our camping gear on the ATV and drove to the upper trailhead at tree line. We camped there and decided to get a really early start at 4:00am so we could be at the summit around sunrise. There is a 4x4 road that takes you all the way to 13,800ft and knew wouldn't be a problem to hike in the dark. The road was easy going and we made it to the summit just after the sun started to rise. We had the summit to ourselves and enjoyed the morning beauty. We decided to hike Cronin Peak as well. It is one of the top 100 peaks in Colorado and is about 2.5 miles from Antero. We had great weather and the traverse across to Cronin Peak was a lot of fun. Cronin Peak is a beautiful peak with lots of color! There wasn't a defined trail to the summit, so we just worked our way up the side of the mountain. The views from the top were great and it was fun to see the route we had taken. We took an alternate route off Cronin down into the basin between Cronin and Antero which allowed us to avoid all the 4x4 traffic on the main Antero road. We passed some mining claims along the way and saw some rocks with traces of aquamarine and quartz crystals. There were also a lot of beautiful columbine flowers soaking up the sun. At the end of the hike, we packed our gear back on the ATV and cruised on out!

Our camp site at tree line

The evening view of the road leading up Antero

Early morning - at the end of the 4x4 road at 13,800'

The sun starting to rise

Looking up the ridge at Antero's summit

Final summit pitch

Summit shot just after 6:15am

Travis headed off the summit

Looking back at Antero from the 4x4 road

Hiking the 4x4 road towards Cronin Peak

A look at our route ahead

Mt Shavano and Tabeguache Peak to the south

The ridge up Cronin Peak

Beautiful flowers!

Travis making his way up Cronin Peak

Summit shot on Cronin Peak

Lindsey's Cronin Summit shot

Travis balancing on a summit rock

Hiking back down the mountain

A view of the ridge we crossed from Antero

Mt. Princeton to the north

In the valley looking back up at Cronin Peak

Beautiful wildflowers

Colorado Columbine

Antero peeking out on the left

Loading the ATV back up and ready to head out

GPS + Google Earth view of our route

Final GPS elevation profile