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20 tallest mountains in Colorado

Tallest Mountains in Colorado: 20 Peaks for Your Next Adventure

Home to 58 peaks that soar over 14,000 feet, Colorado’s mountains invite adventurers from around the globe. As these magnificent peaks, known as “14ers”, dominate the skyline, they offer unparalleled hiking experiences to those seeking an adrenaline rush paired with breathtaking views. Join us as we explore the 20 tallest mountains in Colorado, each boasting a unique allure, and prepare for your next adventure! Let’s get started.





Table of Contents





The 20 Tallest Mountains in Colorado

Starting with the tallest peak in the Rocky Mountains, Mount Elbert, here are the 20 tallest mountains in Colorado from #1 to #20. Keep in mind, not all of these peaks are a good choice for beginners – stick to class one mountains if you are new to this.

  • Elevation: 14,440 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sawatch Range
  • Nearest Town: Leadville
  • Standard Climbing Route: Northeast Ridge


Mt Elbert is the tallest peak in Colorado and the second highest in the contiguous United States. Its relative accessibility combined with the allure of standing atop one of the country’s highest points makes it a popular choice. The Northeast Ridge offers a fairly straightforward Class 1 route, although the altitude can prove challenging for those unaccustomed. Read my Mount Elbert route guide for more information.





  • Elevation: 14,428 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sawatch Range
  • Nearest Town: Leadville
  • Standard Climbing Route: East Slopes


True to its name, Mt Massive holds five of the highest peaks in the state. Less crowded than its neighboring Mt Elbert, this mountain is a great choice for hikers seeking solitude while enjoying Colorado’s magnificent high-altitude beauty. The East Slopes route is a Class 2 climb. Learn to climb it with my Mount Massive route guide.

Mt Harvard Route Guide
  • Elevation: 14,421 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sawatch Range
  • Nearest Town: Buena Vista
  • Standard Climbing Route: South Slopes

The third highest peak in Colorado, Mt Harvard, named after one of the oldest universities in the U.S., offers a Class 2 South Slopes route. This trail winds through pristine alpine meadows, providing a delightful visual treat for those who undertake this hike. Read my Mount Harvard route guide to be prepared for your hike. 

PS: This is one of my personal favorites among the tallest mountains in Colorado.





Blanca Peak and Ellingwood Point
  • Elevation: 14,351 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sangre de Cristo Range
  • Nearest Town: Alamosa
  • Standard Climbing Route: Northwest Ridge

 

Blanca Peak, the fourth-highest mountain in Colorado, stands majestically in the Sangre de Cristo Range. Its Northwest Ridge route is a challenging Class 2, offering experienced hikers a rewarding climb capped by unforgettable views. Learn to climb it safely with my Mount Blanca Route Guide.

  • Elevation: 14,343 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sawatch Range
  • Nearest Town: Twin Lakes
  • Standard Climbing Route: Northwest Ridge


The name ‘La Plata’ is Spanish for ‘The Silver’, a nod to Colorado’s rich mining history. With a challenging but popular Class 2 climb via the Northwest Ridge, La Plata Peak offers trekkers expansive views of the surrounding wilderness from its lofty summit. Read more in my complete La Plata Peak route guide.





  • Elevation: 14,321 ft
  • Mountain Range: San Juan Mountains
  • Nearest Town: Lake City
  • Standard Climbing Route: South Ridge


Uncompahgre Peak, the sixth highest peak in Colorado, is renowned for its dramatic cliffs on the North side and its gentle slopes to the South. Its South Ridge route provides a moderate Class 2 climb, making it an attractive goal for mountaineers of various experience levels. Get ready for your climb with my Uncompahgre Peak route guide.

  • Elevation: 14,300 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sangre de Cristo Range
  • Nearest Town: Crestone
  • Standard Climbing Route: South Face


Crestone Peak is known for its distinctive red rock color and needle-like shape. It offers one of the most challenging standard routes of all the Colorado 14ers, the South Face, a steep, technical climb requiring skill and experience. Prepare to summit Crestone Peak, one of the tallest mountains in Colorado with my complete Crestone Peak route guide.





  • Elevation: 14,293 ft
  • Mountain Range: Mosquito Range
  • Nearest Town: Alma
  • Standard Climbing Route: West Ridge


Named after the 16th U.S. President, Mt Lincoln is the highest peak in the Mosquito Range. Its standard West Ridge route is a moderate Class 2 climb, taking hikers through abandoned mining ruins, a nod to the area’s rich history. Climb it as part of the Decalibron Loop route.

  • Elevation: 14,279 ft
  • Mountain Range: Elk Mountains
  • Nearest Town: Aspen
  • Standard Climbing Route: Northeast Ridge


Castle Peak, named for its fortress-like appearance, is the highest peak in the Elk Mountains. The challenging Northeast Ridge route brings climbers up steep scree slopes and past an old mining structure, a reminder of the area’s past. Prepare to climb it with my Castle Peak route guide.





Grays Peak in May
  • Elevation: 14,278 ft
  • Mountain Range: Front Range
  • Nearest Town: Silver Plume
  • Standard Climbing Route: East Slopes


Grays Peak, known for its distinctive rounded dome, is a popular hiking destination, thanks to its accessibility from Denver and relatively gentle East Slopes route. The Class 1 trail provides ample opportunities to spot wildlife, including mountain goats and pikas. Learn more with my Grays Peak Hiking Guide.

Mt Antero Route Guide
  • Elevation: 14,276 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sawatch Range
  • Nearest Town: Nathrop
  • Standard Climbing Route: West Slopes


Mt Antero, named after a Ute Indian chief, is known for its rich deposits of aquamarine and other gems. The West Slopes route is a Class 2 climb, and the trailhead is accessible by vehicle up to around 12,000 feet, making it one of the easier 14ers to reach. Get ready for your climb with my Mt Antero route guide.





  • Elevation: 14,271 ft
  • Mountain Range: Front Range
  • Nearest Town: Idaho Springs
  • Standard Climbing Route: West Ridge


Home to the highest paved road in North America, Mt Blue Sky offers visitors an easy way to a high summit. For those who prefer a more traditional approach, the Class 2 West Ridge route offers a stunning hike that often includes wildlife sightings, such as Rocky Mountain goats and bighorn sheep. Plan for your visit with my Mt Blue Sky route guide.

  • Elevation: 14,259 ft
  • Mountain Range: Front Range
  • Nearest Town: Estes Park
  • Standard Climbing Route: Keyhole Route


Longs Peak is a true icon of Rocky Mountain National Park. While the Keyhole Route is long and strenuous, reaching the summit is a significant achievement that attracts climbers from around the world. Its dramatic sheer walls and distinctive diamond shape are awe-inspiring. Plan ahead for your climb with my Longs Peak route guide.





Southern Colorado 14ers: Mount Wilson
  • Elevation: 14,252 ft
  • Mountain Range: San Juan Mountains
  • Nearest Town: Telluride
  • Standard Climbing Route: North Slopes


Not to be confused with its neighbor Wilson Peak, Mt Wilson offers a challenging climb and is considered to have some of the most difficult standard routes among the 14ers. The North Slopes route is a Class 4 climb, so good physical condition, proper gear, and climbing experience are necessary for those who wish to undertake this adventure. Learn how to climb it with my Mt Wilson route guide.

  • Elevation: 14,204 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sawatch Range
  • Nearest Town: Buena Vista
  • Standard Climbing Route: East Slopes


Named after Princeton University, Mt Princeton’s East Slopes route offers a steady Class 2 climb. A unique feature of this mountain is the nearby hot springs, perfect for relaxing tired muscles after a challenging hike. You can plan your visit with my complete Mount Princeton route guide.





Mt Yale Route Guide
  • Elevation: 14,200 ft
  • Mountain Range: Sawatch Range
  • Nearest Town: Buena Vista
  • Standard Climbing Route: Southwest Slopes


Another peak named after an Ivy League institution, Mt Yale offers a delightful trek. The Class 2 Southwest Slopes route travels through lush forests before opening up to sweeping views at the summit, making this climb a favorite among Colorado’s hikers. Get ready to climb it with my Mount Yale Route Guide.

  • Elevation: 14,163 ft
  • Mountain Range: Elk Mountains
  • Nearest Town: Aspen
  • Standard Climbing Route: South Ridge


One of the famed “Maroon Bells,” Maroon Peak is known for its challenging routes and stunning red-hued rock. The South Ridge is a Class 3 route, offering an exciting climb for the experienced mountaineer. This peak is a true representation of the rugged beauty Colorado’s mountains have to offer. Learn what you need to know for a safe ascent in my Maroon Peak route guide.





  • Elevation: 14,159 ft
  • Mountain Range: San Juan Mountains
  • Nearest Town: Ouray
  • Standard Climbing Route: East Slopes


Named after the mountain in Jules Verne’s “Journey to the Center of the Earth,” Mt Sneffels offers a Class 3 East Slopes route that features a steep climb to a rewarding summit. With its beautiful wildflowers and vast views of the surrounding San Juan Mountains, it’s a dream for both climbers and photographers alike. Get ready to visit with my Mount Sneffels route guide.

  • Elevation: 14,137 ft
  • Mountain Range: Elk Mountains
  • Nearest Town: Carbondale
  • Standard Climbing Route: Northeast Ridge


Capitol Peak offers one of the most challenging climbs among Colorado’s 14ers. The standard Northeast Ridge route, known for the thrilling “Knife Edge” section, is a Class 4 climb that requires a head for heights and careful navigation. Capitol Peak is considered the most dangerous and deadly of the tallest 14ers in Colorado. My Capitol Peak route guide has everything you need to know for a safe ascent.





Pikes Peak Rescue
  • Elevation: 14,115 ft
  • Mountain Range: Front Range
  • Nearest Town: Colorado Springs
  • Standard Climbing Route: East Slopes


One of Colorado’s most iconic peaks, Pikes Peak stands out not just for its height but also its deep historical and cultural significance. Known as the inspiration for “America the Beautiful,” it offers a variety of experiences, from a drivable road to the summit, to the challenging Class 1 East Slopes hiking route. Prepare for your ascent with my Pikes Peak route guide.

Mountain Safety Tips

Whether you are climbing one of the tallest mountains in Colorado or just taking a short day hike, you need to plan ahead and be prepared for anything. Given the risks you will face in the mountains of Colorado, safety must be your top priority. Here are a few tips to ensure your mountain adventure is both exciting and safe:

  1. Always check the weather forecast before you start your hike.
  2. Begin your hike early to avoid afternoon thunderstorms.
  3. Carry essential gear like warm clothing, a first-aid kit, and plenty of water and food.
  4. Acclimatize to the altitude to avoid altitude sickness.
  5. Always let someone know your hiking plan and expected return time.




The Tallest Mountains in Colorado: Now You Know!

Colorado’s towering 14ers promise adventures that will leave you with unforgettable memories. As you explore these giants, remember to tread lightly, respect the power of nature, and bask in the awe-inspiring beauty these peaks offer. From the tallest Mt Elbert to the historically rich Pikes Peak, each mountain has its unique story, waiting for you to discover it. Get ready to lace up your boots and embrace the thrill that these 20 tallest mountains in Colorado have to offer!

Additional Resources: Tallest Mountains in Colorado

Here are some additional websites and resources with more information about the tallest mountains in Colorado and other peaks of interest.









Alex Derr, Founder of The Next Summit

Alex Derr is an Eagle Scout, climber, and environmental policy expert located in Denver, Colorado. He created The Next Summit to help others stay safe exploring the mountains and advocate to preserve the peaks for the future. Follow him on Linkedin or Twitter or click here to contact him.





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Hi, I'm Alex!

In 2018, I watched in disbelief as dozens of people hiked into a storm on Longs Peak, unaware of the extreme danger. Soon after, I started The Next Summit to educate and empower the public to safely and responsibly explore America's mountains.

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Become a subscriber to download my free 14er planner. It lists all 58 peaks in the perfect climbing order. Get it now & start planning!