14er Peak Rank Unranked

Mount Cameron – featured on Colorado 14ers Series Map 4 of 16 – belongs to a small club of 14er peaks that don’t actually “count” as 14ers; that is to say, they are unranked. Though its summit stands at a mighty 14,238′ elevation, it does not drop the required 300′ of elevation to the saddle between itself and neighboring peaks to be a true, ranked 14er peak.  This is the case with four other 14ers in Colorado: named, but unranked.

The source of the name Cameron is uncertain, though a few theories point to some Civil War era politicians. Likes the surroundings peaks of the Mosquito Range, the area is pockmarked with remnants of precious and base metal mining activity dating back to the post Civil War period, with numerous stretches of private property dotting the area (mainly old mining claims), including the summit of Mount Cameron itself.

View of Mount Cameron and surrounding peaks

Peaks of the Decalibron, by Sublimegroove – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link 

As with Mount Bross, Mount Cameron is almost certainly hiked as part of a circuit of other 14ers in the area called the Decalibron.  Mount Cameron makes up the “Ca” part of DeCaLiBron hike. The summit is only 140′ above the saddle with Mount Lincoln, so it is something of a bump in path between Mount Democrat and Mount Lincoln on the circuit.

Though almost never hiked exclusively, the most common route taken by hikers directly to Mount Cameron would be via the Kite Lake Trailhead (12,035′ elevation). From there, the trail climbs north on a Class 2 route (more difficult hiking) 1.3 miles to the ridge between Democrat and Cameron. From there, 0.6 miles to the left/west is the summit of Mount Democrat, and 0.9 miles to the right/east is the rounded summit of Mount Cameron. Continue 0.3 miles further northeast to Mount Lincoln.

As with all visits to the Colorado 14ers – even the gentle trails and summits of the Decalibron: be prepared, know your limitations, watch the weather, drink plenty of water, and as always don’t forget your 14ers Maps. Mount Caermon is one of six fourteeners featured on Outdoor Trail Maps Colorado 14ers Series Map 4 of 16.

Directions to Trailhead:

To access the Kite Lake Trailhead (camping allowed), follow County Road 8 (Buckskin St) west from Alma, CO off CO Hwy 9 for 5.5 miles to the Kite Lake Trailhead at 12,035′ elevation. Low clearance vehicles can make it most of the way, but small water crossings may mean parking these vehicles lower on the road.