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Mt. Oxford
standard Via Mt. Belford
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Difficulty:
 Class 2 
Risk Factors:Exposure: Moderate
Rockfall Potential: Moderate  
Route-Finding: Low  
Commitment: Considerable  
 
Trailhead:Missouri Gulch
Start:9,650 feet
Summit:14,153 feet
Total Gain:5,800 feet
RT Length:11.00 miles
Duration:User Climb Times
Author:BillMiddlebrook
Updated:6/2019
Weather:NOAA Forecast
Conditions:104 reports
Cell Signal:12 reports
Sheriff:Chaffee: 719-539-2596
Forest:San Isabel
Wilderness:Collegiate Peaks
Quad. Maps:Log In to View
Camping:On Google Maps
Eats:On Google Maps
Downloads:Log In to Download
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Trailhead

From Leadville: Drive 20 miles south on U.S. 24 and turn right on the Chaffee County 390 road.
From Buena Vista: Drive 14.5 miles north on U.S. 24 and turn left on the Chaffee County 390 road.
On the 390 road, drive 7.5 miles to a sign for the Missouri Gulch trailhead. Turn left and drive down into the large parking area. There are restrooms here.

Route

Follow the Mt. Belford - Northwest Ridge Route to the summit of Mt. Belford. Oxford is 1.5 miles to the east and the connecting ridge between Belford and Oxford is obvious - 1. What you cannot see from here is that the descent from Belford is more difficult than the hike up to Oxford.

Descend southeast from Belford's summit and follow a trail southeast - 2. After 1/4 mile and still above 14,000', turn left and start down Belford's east ridge, toward the Belford-Oxford saddle - 3. Before the turn, you may see another trail heading toward Elkhead Pass - stay on the trail for Oxford. Begin your descent of the ridge - 4 and 5. Follow the trail toward Oxford as it weaves down through the rocks ( 6) to reach the saddle at 13,500' - 7.

Cross the saddle and begin climbing Oxford's southwest ridge - 8 and 9. Near 14,000', pass a large rock pile - 10. The trail sweeps left before turning right to reach the final pitch - 11. Hike through rocks to reach the top - 12, 13 and 14. 15 shows the return to Belford, which is the most grueling part of this hike.

Notes

This is not a walk in the park. Bring a lot of water and start as early as possible. IMPORTANT: This route enters the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness area. Wilderness areas have special regulations and restrictions for party size, dispersed camping, campfires, etc. Also, dog owners should read the wilderness information carefully because some wilderness areas prohibit dogs to be off-leash and/or limit how close dogs can be to lakes and streams. If you have questions about the wilderness area, please contact a U.S. Forest Service office for the National Forest(s) listed above.
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