Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Halfway There

Thursday, July 27th was a slack pack day. I hiked from Chalk Creek Trailhead near Mt. Princeton Hot Springs south to Angel of Shavano Trailhead. It was a total of 14.9 miles. The hike was not hard. My starting elevation was 8,389 feet. I got above 10,000 feet near the end of the hike for a brief period. For the most of the hike I was in the 9,000 foot range near the base of the mountains.
Chalk Cliffs
Mt. Princeton above the Chalk Cliffs
Looking up the valley towards St. Elmo
Looking South
Window in the Clouds
Mt. Ouray
Angel of Shavano Trailhead below
After the hike, I had pizza and beer in Salida with my parents. We then drove to my home for a couple of nights. Friday would be a day off to wash clothes and to get a little rest. More hikes to come on the Colorado Trail…

Tuesday, August 15, 2017


July 26, 2017, Day 3 of a backpacking trip on the Colorado Trail. I woke up early and was on the trail by 5:30 A.M. There were lots of clouds hanging around again this morning. That is unusual for Colorado in the morning. It made for some interesting views. I had about 16.5 miles to do that day. I was on my way to Monarch Pass where I would meet my parents. For a while, it looked like the clouds might lift, but that did not happen until I was almost to Monarch Pass.
Low Clouds
Sun trying to shine through the clouds
Trail marker - Looking towards the San Luis Valley
Trail near Silver Creek
Still Cloudy
Approaching Marshall Pass & Mt Ouray (In the Clouds)
Trail close to Treeline
Snow near a ridge top
Trail along the Continental Divide
Cloudy View
Trail in the clouds on top of a ridge
The clouds lift and I can see Monarch Pass
View of Tabeguache Peak and Mt. Shavano
After reaching Monarch Pass, my parents took me down to Salida where we stayed the night. I dried out my tent and gear in a park that afternoon. I also got to see U.S win the Gold Cup that night. Stay Tuned for more Colorado Trail adventures/pictures...

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Have You Ever Seen The Rain?

This is the first post of several about my latest adventures on the Colorado Trail. On July 23rd, I travelled to Gunnison, Colorado with my parents. On the way, we stopped so I could do a short slack pack hike along the Colorado Trail. I did a 5.5 mile from US 50 to the Angel of Shavano Trailhead. The hike was mostly wooded, but it did have nice moments.
Looking South
Trail through the aspen trees

Hungry Tree

The southern side of Shavano. (Top not visible)
After staying the night in Gunnison, I got Pops to drop me off on the Colorado Trail at its intersection with Cochetopa Pass Road. This was the start of a backpacking trip. I would hike from here north to Monarch Pass over three days. I saw lots of people going the opposite direction. Most of the hikers were going to Durango. There was not a whole lot views this day. The trail stayed in the woods for the most part. Part of the trail that I followed was called the Summit Trail. It followed a ridge, and the trail seemed like it went over every single bump on that ridge. Good drinking water was a bit scarce, but I was prepared. I stayed the night at Razor Creek with several other hikers. I hiked 16.3 miles of trail that day.
Lujan Creek near Highway 114
View from the top of a ridge on the Summit Trail
It rained during the night. So I got to pack up a wet tent on the morning of Day 2 of the backpacking trip. The morning was cloudy and bit misty at times. It eventually burned off by mid-morning. I had a light lunch on Sargents Mesa and dried out my tent. The hike down Sargents Mesa was through cattle country. I got water at Tank Seven Creek. I went ahead and cooked an early dinner at the water source since I would not see another reliable water source the rest of the day. After eating, I hiked around 5.5 miles. This part of the hike was not much fun as I got to see the rain late into the hike. I had to take cover in a thick set of trees during a huge downpour. The trail had turned into a creek. There was also lightning and hail. After the storm calmed down, I hiked probably another half mile. I found a good campsite for the night. Due to early dinner and weather delays, I had hiked a little later than I normally would. I estimate I hiked 20 miles that day. So it was a good day mileage wise.
Looking back on the trail from Middle Baldy
Middle Baldy
Cloudy morning
Sargents Mesa
Starting to descend Sargents Mesa.  Mt. Ouray in the clouds.
Norman and his mom
A field without cows
Rain is coming
Looking towards Mt. Ouray and Marshall Pass
More posts coming when I have time…

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Do What You Want, Be What You Are

This post goes back to July 15th. I got up early and drove to the Tarryall Mountains in the Lost Creek Wilderness. I climbed Mt. Bison which has an elevation of 12,431 ft. It is a 12-mile out and back hike from the Ute Creek Trailhead on County Road 77. The hike is a steady up, but it is nothing too difficult. The rock formations near the top were quite interesting. The morning weather was cloudy which is usually rare in Colorado. The good thing was that the clouds kept it cool and reduced the chances of thunderstorms. Here are the pictures from a fun hike.
Just crested the ridge that leads to Mt. Bison
On the ridge that leads to Mt. Bison
Mt. Bison Summit Sign
View from the top of Mt. Bison
Looking towards South Park
Another view from the top
Looking back on the way I came up
View of McCurdy Mountain on the left
Me again
Rocks on the way down
More rock formations
Big Rock
Looking back on the summit of Mt. Bison.
The Trail Down