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Mount Sniktau
June 15, 1997
Arapaho National Forest
Starting Elevation: 11,992 feet
Highest Elevation: 13,235 feet
Distance (round trip): ~ 4 miles
click on each photo to view a larger image

Mount Sniktau is one of those summits that you can reach very easily from Denver without having to spend your entire day out in the backcountry. The round trip described below took a total of less than five hours from Denver (including driving time).

Looking back along the ridge from the summit with the Tenmile Range in the background.
Looking back along the ridge from the summit with the Tenmile Range in the background.
Begin your hike at the top of Loveland Pass on US Hwy 6 - Elevation 11,992 feet. Park at the top and head east up the trail which follows the ridge. Note: This hike has the exact same begining as the hike up to Grizzly Peak. After climbing about a thousand vertical feet up this well visited trail you will reach "the top" which puts you in easy reach of both Sniktau and Grizzly Peak.

Whereas you would hike to the south to reach Grizzly, you will need to turn north to reach Mount Sniktau. To reach the summit of Sniktau follow the ridge down and then up one unnamed summit, over this summit, down about a couple of hundred feet and back up several hundred feet. This will put you on top of Mount Sniktau - a total distance of about two miles (or less).

Looking Southeast towards Torreys Peak (left) and Grizzly Peak (right).
Looking Southeast towards Torreys Peak (left) and Grizzly Peak (right).
From the top you can see Torreys Peak to the southeast and Grizzly Peak to the south. To the east you can see I-70 as well as Mount Parnassus. To the north lies Hager Mountain and Pettingell Peak. Northwest you can see virtually the entire Loveland Loop and to the west, Keystone Ski Area as well as the Tenmile range off in the distance.

The hike back down follows the route up. The only additional advice I can give would be to follow the ridge rather than trying to travers around the sub-peaks. I say this because as you can see from the images the weather was moving in and I was somewhat in a hurry to leave. Another group of hikers that left the summit as I arrived took a circuitous route around the sub-peaks and I went up and over. I ended up meeting up with them well before the final "summit" where we all had to turn back down the mountain to reach our cars at the parking area below.
Along on this hike with me: no one.


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