LoJ: #477 (Pre-LiDAR #474) / 13,215' UN 13215 Formerly UN 13206

Range › San Juan Range
Quadrangle › Wetterhorn Peak
Summit Location › Peak Route Icon N 38° 04' 28.03", W 107° 31' 29.19" (Not Field Checked)

Peak Summary

UN13,215 is an easy Class 2 walk-up from the Middle Fork of the Cimarron River trailhead. The most difficult aspect of reaching this summit is just the mileage. We climbed it as part of a weekend, one overnight backpack trip in which we climbed this summit, UN13,382, Heisshorn and El Punto over two days. We have sequenced 13,215 with 13,382. The trailhead can be reached by vehicles with above average clearance. 4WD is not really required. Lidar increased the elevation of this summit by 9 feet.

UN13,215 SE Ridge Route

Class 2
Peak Icon Peak Icon
Short Day // A Wee Little Climb
Climbed with UN 13382
RT From Middle Fork of the Cimarron River: 12.4 mi / 3,800'
RT From Middle Fork Cimarron Base Camp with UN 13382: 3.6 mi / 2,250'
From UN 13382: 0.90 mi / 450' (One-Way)
  • Trailhead
    Approach Map Photos
    • From Middle Fork of the Cimarron River TH via Middle Fork Cimarron Base Camp & UN 13382:

      • Middle Fork of the Cimarron River  Easy | RT: 8.8 mi / 1,550’

        From the trailhead, walk south past some willows and into a large meadow. The easy-to-follow trail #227 continues south gaining elevation up the drainage, passing through both forest and meadow. For the first two miles, it gains elevation rather gently. At 2.2 miles, the trail crosses the creek coming out of Porphyry Basin. The USGS map indicates a footbridge here. We found no such thing in 2005, but crossing the creek was not that difficult. Note that a path into Porphyry Basin heads up from this crossing area, on the north side of the creek, before you cross the creek. On this first & lower section of trail, do not be surprised to see cattle and in wet conditions, they can really muck up the trail.

        Continue hiking on past the creek crossing for another 2 miles with the trail steepening and crossing through an avalanche run out area with downed timber. At about 3 miles from the TH, you'll come to a nice meadow area with lots of flowers mid-summer. Between the Porphyry crossing and this meadow, the views of the east side of Precipice Peak are spectacular with a dramatic array of cliffs, angular rocks, spires and pinnacles. As you continue hiking, there will be some possible campsites to consider. Most tended to be small and somewhat sloping with old cow pies. At about the 11,400 foot area, we found a usable campsite, but the best campsite we found was continuing all the way to where the trail takes a turn to the east and begins its ascent up to a pass just north of the Heisshorn. If you continue on this trail #227, it drops over a tundra saddle and into the East Fork of the Cimarron to become #228. There is also another trail that heads off to the right/west to cross the creek and then ascends to the base of Coxcomb Peak. This trail is called the Coxcomb Trail #132. In places it is not very visible and marked by stakes/posts. It does not show on the USGS but is on the Trails Illustrated map #141.

        If you'll leave the main trail where it makes this turn and walk south, crossing another side drainage, but still remaining on the east side of the Middle Fork, there is an excellent campsite which at the time was being used by horse packing groups. If unoccupied, this makes an excellent base camp for ascending El Punto and Heisshorn together, and then UN13,377 and UN13,206 together.

        Route shown is an approximation. Not intended for use as a GPX track.


        The campsite we recommend was somewhere near these coordinates taken from our best guess on Google Earth. Elevation was right around 11,600 ft.

        Campsite Locations

        Middle Fork Camp N 38° 05' 14.16", W 107° 31' 08.91"

        Open This Approach in a New Window
      • UN13,382 SW Ridge & Saddle  Class 2 / 1.8 mi / 1,800’ One-Way

        The route description begins from the campsite coordinates provided and assumes a backpack trip up the Middle Fork. Mileage and elevation gain is measured from that campsite, which is just south of where the main trail begins to leave the drainage and turns east toward the 12,595 ft. pass.

        There’s not much to say about the route here. You can see UN13,382 and UN13,215 at the head of the valley as you walk south up valley, by the northern slopes of the Heisshorn, gazing apprehensively at it’s precipitous north face. Continue walking into the upper basin on easy tundra. Then walk more steeply up to the saddle between UN 13,382 and 13,215. At that easy saddle, you will be greeted by an impressive view of the north side of Wetterhorn Peak, with its rugged cliffs and sheer walls. You can get some impressive photos here if the weather cooperates. Begin hiking up to the summit along the ridge. Some prominent rock formations on the ridge may cause you to stay left and follow a natural contour to a saddle that leads to the final, summit approach. The remainder of the hike to the summit, is without difficulty over tundra and rock.

        Of note: In 2005, we found a summit register with an individual who signed in and indicated they had climbed UN13,382 by traversing from the Heisshorn summit along the ridge. That ridge traverse looks quite complicated and impressive. We do not recall who made that entry.

        Once you've summited UN13,382, then return as you came or head west and northwest back along the connecting ridge over to UN13,215.

        Another alternate approach would be this: From the suggested Base Campsite, locate the "Coxcomb Trail #132 that splits off from the main Middle Fork Trail, crossing the creek and heading SW. This Coxcomb Trail is near where the Middle Fork trail turns east away from the creek to climb to a pass. Follow the Coxcomb Trail which will land you on a saddle between Coxcomb and 13,092. Walk SE along the ridge crest over 13,092, then over 13,215 to continue on to 13,382.

        Open This Route in a New Window
    Peak Icon Route

    Route Info UN13,215 SE Ridge

    Route Description

    Year Climbed: 2005

    UN13,215 is sequenced with UN13,382. One way mileage and elevation gain are measured from UN13,382.

    From the summit of UN13,382, retrace your route along the ridge crest heading back SW and then turning WNW to follow the main ridge over to UN13,215. There will be one little "bump" to surmount along the way just after reaching a saddle.

    From the saddle, head WNW, passing the minor bump along the way by contouring on the north side and then scrambling up a steep gully. On the other side of the bump is the main saddle. Then there is another very steep section of scrambling on fine, loose dirt before gaining better footing on a more level slope that leads to the summit of UN 13,215. This summit is a large, flat area, dotted with some rocks, but mostly covered with tundra. It required less than 45 minutes from the first summit to reach here. Like UN13,382, the view of the 14er Wetterhorn is simply stunning on a good day. Take plenty of photos.

    To descend, hike back ESE along the ridge and turn down a steep gully just north of the ridge bump. This scree filled couloir will deposit you quickly into the tundra filled upper basin. Then stroll across the tundra to intercept your route that you came in on from the main trail and either return to your campsite or hike back out to the TH.

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