Longs Peak Keyhole Route

Longs Peak Keyhole Route – Conclusion

If you missed any part of the journey up Longs Peak Keyhole Route click the links below to get caught up:

A full moon sits inside the formation known as the Keyhole.
The moon sits inside the rock formation known as the Keyhole. The Agnes Vaille Memorial structure can be seen on the left side of the formation.

Is climbing the Longs Peak Keyhole Route worth it? For me, the amazing views and challenging terrain were very much worth the effort. I love a challenge. However, if you have the faintest bit of vertigo or aren’t acclimated to being at altitude then you will probably want to sit this one out. If you do want to attempt climbing Longs Peak, I highly recommend overnighting in the Boulder Field. I think it makes the summit much more achievable than a long day hike.

Here is a video recapping our time on Longs Peak:

Things to Know when Climbing the Longs Peak Keyhole Route:

  • This thin ledge is the section of the Longs Peak climb known as The Narrows.

    RMNP backcountry camping reservations are available each year starting on March 1st. Lock them in early!

  • Snow covers the RMNP high country until mid-July each year. It can snow at this altitude at any time of the year.
    • This route can be climbed in winter conditions but proper gear is needed.
    • The best time to summit the Longs Peak Keyhole Route without winter gear is late July to early September.
  • Travel with several layers of clothing. The peak is cold year round.
  • A hiker makes there way across the Ledges
    The path back across the section known as the Ledges.

    Carry at least 3 liters of water especially if you plan to summit the peak. Water can be filtered in the Boulder Field, but for most of this trail, water is scarce. There is a water spigot at the trailhead.

  • Sunscreen is a must. There is no tree cover for most of the Longs Peak Keyhole Route.
  • Hiking sticks really help out the knees on the way down.
  • Camping is not allowed at the Trailhead parking area.
  • The trail has two privy bathroom areas along the route. One at the Chasm Lake intersection and the other in the Boulder Field Campground.
  • Be willing to not summit. If conditions change for the worse and the path is unsafe, turn back.

Alt Recommendation

The view from the top of Mount Ida. Standing on this ledge isn’t necessary but it is amazing!

If a climb up the Longs Peak Keyhole Route sounds like it isn’t for you, but you still want some amazing panoramic views of Rocky Mountain National Parks’ alpine landscape, then check out Mount Ida. It is much easier and the views from the top are almost as good.

If you have enjoyed this adventure up Longs Peak please share it on your social networks. Thanks!

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