We drove to the parking area around 3000 meters. You can leave your vehicle and hike up the road. Above 3400 meters, the road has a couple of large switchbacks as it climbs up the ridge to 4053 m. After a kilometer, you enter an area of tundra like terrian. However the peak you see is not the summit. The trail to the summit is located on the right of the road, the road continues to an old mine so ensure you start looking for the trail marks when you come to the open terrian area. You have gone to far if you are still on the road and heading left (south)
They have placed steps on the trail and there should be a large trail marker.
Continue up to 3630 Meters on the ridge. The trail crosses to the north side of the ridge where you can see the Princeton summit. The summit is about 2.2 km. Continue on the trail as it crosses the north face of the adj. peak. The trail climbs through rocks and across a few chutes that have snow in spring and early summer. Continue west along the trail and over mostly stable boulders. Occasionally, the trail may disappear due to recent rock movement however the trail markers can always be spotted in the distance due to the amount of hikers on this trail taking breaks and creating there own.
While the route is fairly moderate to easy, the altitude for travellers from lower elevations (us from Alberta) may find it a bit of a strain if not in shape. Luckily we run so it wasn't as bad. There were a few people that could barely make it to the summit. Due to the amount of electrical storms in Colorado summiting must occur before noon.
Bring lots of water and energy as this hike will take some muscle work as you reach reach the last 500 meters and need to climb medium boulders.
From Buena Vista: From the center of town, drive west on the County Road (CR) 306. Turn left on CR 321 and continue south. Turn right onto CR 322 at a large sign.
On CR 322, drive 1K to a fork in the road. Bear right into the Mt. Princeton trailhead. This trailhead is at 8,900' and there is a large parking area. If you have a good clearance 4WD, you can continue up the narrow 322 (Mt. Princeton) road. Just after the lower parking area, there is a fork in the road - stay right on the main road. Drive 3 miles to the radio towers at 10,800'. There is parking here for a couple of vehicles
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