This 14,267-foot Front Range peak is usually climbed in conjunction with neighboring Grays Peak, which together make one of the most popular twofer 14er hikes in Colorado. The trails for both split off at the saddle at 13,200 feet, so you can choose which to climb first. Many people hike Grays first and then Torreys and make a loop down Kelso Ridge, which involves some fun class 3 scrambling and hair-raising exposure.
Having summited Grays Peak via an alternate route, from Chihuahua Gulch, we joined the usual crowds on top of Torreys and decided, with no beforehand research, to make a loop by descending the west ridge, which eventually leads to Loveland Pass. It wasn’t the wisest decision, as we left that trail and scrambled down an unending boulder field, hoping there were no cliffs between us and the valley where we’d left our tent. We got lucky, but the next time I decided to descend a different route than we took up, I made sure to do my research.
Kelso Ridge is a fun introduction to class 3 climbing. Consider ascending or descending Torreys via this route on your trip.
If you have a passenger car, prepare to park near I-70 and hike 3 miles up a road to the trailhead.
This mountain, along with Grays Peak, is extremely crowded on summer weekends. Do yourself a favor and hike a weekday or in the offseason.
Recommended season(s): Early summer to early fall
—R. Scott Rappold