Directions: The Wason Trailhead is located in Creede, Colorado off of Hwy 149 at the back of a parking lot near the intersection of 7th Street and La Garita Street.
The hike up to the top of the Creede Pinnacles is just the first part of a potentially longer hike to Inspiration Point and Mammoth Mountain. If you are looking for a shorter hike with a big payoff, then limiting yourself to the Creede Pinnacles portion might be exactly what you are looking for.
This hike is spectacular... It is only about 8/10 ths of a mile to the top of the Pinnacles (the trail sign says 1 mile) but it is a steep, hot, and exposed trail. You gain about 900 feet in the short climb. That being said, my 5 year old was able to drag himself up the hike so it's not too rough.
From the trailhead, the Wason Trail climbs up the grassy, wildflower filled hillside with near constant views of the town of Creede. It's a straight shot up to the saddle and easy to navigate. As you climb higher the views become all the more impressive. Views include Snowshoe Mountain to the south and the cliffs of the Rio Grande Valley to the west heading up to Bristol Head and Spring Creek Pass. The Creede Pinnacles are the rocky outcrops to the west of the trail and provide a constant reminder of your goal for the hike.
At the top of the saddle a trail sign will point to the left saying "Up & Over." Turn left and follow the trail to the top of the rock formations known as the Pinnacles. The trail is clear and you don't need to climb the rocks to arrive at the "summit." The views are jaw-dropping. The view to the north of the monstrous rock formations to the north of the town are just incredible and the cliffs of Mammoth Mountain will beg you to continue climbing the Wason Trail. If you have the time and energy to continue on then I strongly suggest that you do so. If you have children begging for ice cream, then enjoy the views and head back down the steep trail back to Creede.
There is no shortage of great hiking options near Creede but the short hike up to the Pinnacles is a must do. This hike serves as a great introduction to the area and will surely wet your appetite for longer excursions in the La Garita Mountains.
HIKES BY REGION
NATIONAL PARK HIKES
- BENT'S OLD FORT NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE
- BLACK CANYON OF THE GUNNISON NATIONAL PARK
- COLORADO NATIONAL MONUMENT
- CURECANTI NATIONAL RECREATION AREA
- DINOSAUR NATIONAL MONUMENT
- FLORISSANT FOSSIL BEDS NATIONAL MONUMENT
- MESA VERDE NATIONAL PARK
- ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK
- GREAT SAND DUNES NATIONAL PARK
- HOVENWEEP NATIONAL MONUMENT
- SAND CREEK MASSACRE NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE
- YUCCA HOUSE NATIONAL MONUMENT
- HIKES BY CATEGORY
- $UPPORT GHC
- INTERACTIVE MAP
Creede Pinnacles (via Wason Trail)
Rio Grande National Forest
Date Hiked: July 27, 2019
Distance: 1.6 mi (RT)
Elevation Gain: 900 ft
Elevation Min/Max: 8,775 to 9,424 ft
Trailhead Lat/Long: 37º 50' 57" N; 106º 55' 27" W
Managing Agency: U.S. Forest Service