TR: Gothic Mountain Hike – North Peak

(Last Updated On: July 28, 2017)

Gothic Mountain is probably THE classic peak in Crested Butte. For locals and visitors alike, it stands impressive – a mountain seemingly made of Gothic Mountain spires, with twin peaks, north and south. While I’ve trekked up to the summit of Gothic Mountain numerous times to ski lines on the south, east, and west, I had yet to hike to Gothic’s north peak. Since the traditional summer route follows along Gothic’s northwest ridge passing right over the north peak, I decided it was time to check out that side of the mountain.

Some people access the summer route via trail 403. But, those who know, know that it’s better accessed from Washington Gulch. Just before the road begins to climb up the switchbacks to Elkton, there is an unmarked/unofficial trail that leads toward Gothic.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

The trail ascends through a valley to the west-northwest of Gothic. Another view of the mountain.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

The trail was relatively obvious until it reaches a meadow. Then, it faded out. Following across the meadow trending left will lead to a cairn that marks the intersection with 403. Following across the meadow trending right eventually leads to a trail that becomes more prominent as it enters the forest.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

Though well-traveled, the many log-obtacles show that this trail is indeed not maintained!
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

The north peak.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

The views kept getting better and better as I climbed above the trees. The diamond face of Avery, which we climbed in August.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

First signs of snow!
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

The trail was very steep at times.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

But the views were spectacular! From Baldy on the left to the Maroon Bells on the right, with several peaks in between.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

The ridge to the north summit.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

Me on the north summit.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

A view of the south summit, which is 135 feet higher than the 12,490 North peak
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

Another view from the north summit.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

The cross commemorates the passing of Ryan Kenneth Brown, who passed away after a fall while climbing Gothic in September, 2000.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

The Maroon Bells in the distance on the left, and Rustler Gulch.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

Due to some time restrictions, I could not head over to the south summit. So, I turned around and descended down my ascent path. A view looking down, with an arrow on the left marking where my car is parked.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

A ruckus in the forest had me alert. I looked up and saw a heavy grey bird flying into this tree. A grouse.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

One last view of Gothic.
Hiking Gothic Mountain near Crested Butte, CO.

About 3 hours after I left my car, I returned. Gothic is a great climb – a Crested Butte classic. For those willing for a bit of adventure, it’s well worth the journey.

Summary
Article Name
Gothic Mountain Hike - North Peak
Description
Gothic Mountain is probably THE classic peak in Crested Butte. For locals and visitors alike, it stands distinctive - and makes a great hike too!
Author

Brittany Walker Konsella

Aside from skiing, biking, and all outdoorsy things,Brittany Walker Konsella also loves smiles and chocolate 🙂 Even though she excels at higher level math and chemistry, she still confuses left from right. Find out more about Brittany!

Latest posts by Brittany Walker Konsella (see all)

Brittany Walker Konsella

Aside from skiing, biking, and all outdoorsy things, Brittany Walker Konsella also loves smiles and chocolate :) Even though she excels at higher level math and chemistry, she still confuses left from right. Find out more about Brittany!

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