Peak(s):  Taylor Mtn A  -  13,651 feet
Date Posted:  08/22/2010
Date Climbed:   08/20/2010
Author:  atr67
 Taylor Mtn-Columbus Gulch  

This hike up Taylor Mountain (el 13651) starts at Hwy 50 at the west end of Garfield. I parked by the ski rental shop and the beginning of FS road 230. The elevation is approximately 9680 feet. Start up FS road 230 (Middle Fork Road) toward Hancock and after about mile take the right fork at the FS road 230 B (signposted). There is an old cemetery on the left just after starting up FS road 230 B. I followed this 4WD road and crossed Kangaroo Gulch after about a mile. The road continued up for about another miles to the highpoint of the ridge between Kangaroo Gulch and Columbus Gulch. There is an abandoned mine and tailings at this point on the NE side of the road. I marked this with a small cairn. I hiked up on the right side of the tailings and found an unmarked mine road above the tailings heading up to the north toward Columbus Gulch. There was another mine on the left of this road and an abandoned mine entrance (el 11538) at the end of the road, next to Columbus Gulch. The summit is approximately 2000 feet above this point. I hiked above this mine staying to the right and parallel with Columbus Gulch
Mine Portal at Columbus Gulch
in an easy scree slope until reaching a faint path near an upper mine tailing
Looking down Columbus Gulch
. The path switchbacked to the right and turned into a faint road that gained the ridge between Columbus and Kangaroo Gulches at approximately 11860 feet. I hiked north once on the ridge past another mine and continued on top of the ridge until reaching the southwest slope of Taylor at 12,840 feet. Aetna is to the left and the ridge between Aetna and Taylor was clearly observed. There was one more abandoned mine just above this point (el 12930) with the summit approximately another 700 feet up to the northeast
Taylor from last mine
. I stayed to the left looking for green areas as I hiked up the boulders to the summit
Aetna and connecting ridge
. I made sure to pick the right ridge (between Kangaroo and Columbus Gulches) on the way down (the one on the left from the top mine) and had a fast decent. It was about 40 minutes to the mine at 11538 feet and another hour to the car. It was a great day with the peak in and out of clouds. I had sun at the end of the hike. The views were great to Ouray and to the west. It took me about 3 hours up with about 4000 feet of elevation gain. The RT distance was 7 1/4 miles.

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