Slumgullion Pass & Slumgullion Earthflow

Red Mountain from the summit of Slumgullion Pass
Red Mountain from the summit of Slumgullion Pass
Slumgullion Earthflow

The Slumgullion Earthflow and Slumgullion Pass (11,361') are located on Highway 149, the Silver Thread Scenic Byway, between Creede and Lake City. The Pass is not really a pass but is actually a low point on a ridge where it is possible to drop down to the Lake Fork of the Gunnison River.

The earthflow, or mudslide, began some 700 years ago when, lubricated by heavy rains, the weak volcanic tuff and breccia on the southern flank of Mesa Seco slumped several miles down the steep mountainside. The photo to the left shows some of it. About 350 years ago, a second earthflow started from the top of the mountain. The new flow is still moving, sometimes as much as twenty feet in a year.

The first flow was so large and cataclysmic, it blocked the Lake Fork of the Gunnison River and created Lake San Cristobal, Colorado's second largest natural lake.

Uncompahgre, Matterhorn and Wetterhorn Peaks from Slumgullion Pass
Wetterhorn, Matterhorn and Uncompahgre, from the summit of Slumgullion Pass
Mesa Seco
Mesa Seco, where the Slumgullion Earthflow began its' downward slide
Slumgullion Earthflow
The Earthflow from below
Slumgullion Earthflow
A more active section of the Earthflow
Slumgullion Earthflow
Another view from below
Slumgullion Pass, Slumgullion Earthflow area mapLake San CristobalAlpine Loop Back Country BywaySilver Thread Scenic BywayCurecanti National Recreation AreaPowderhorn WildernessUncompahgre WildernessLa Garita WildernessWeminuche WildernessWheeler Geologic Area
Slumgullion Pass and Earthflow area map logo
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