Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Last Day of June

I don't have a whole lot to say for this post. I figure I better post something since it has been a while. I went to Belmar Park today and walked around the area. The park is right next to Lakewood's Heritage Center which is near Lakewood's fake downtown. (Lakewood doesn't have a real downtown) There were some interesting old buildings at the Heritage Center. Anyway, here is a picture from Belmar Park.

Kountze Lake

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Deep In The Motherlode

It has been a while since I have had a big picture update. Actually, it has been a few weeks since I had a small update. As most of you know, I have had some knee issues that have limited my activity this year. I still have issues with the knee, but it has felt better recently. I have been itching to get out. So I decided to explore the Independence Pass area. I have never been there. I drove out Friday morning and found a place to stay about halfway between Independence Pass and Aspen.

My Aspen Condo

I know, it is not Myrtle Beach, but this is a little more in my limited budget. After checking into my resort, I went off to explore the area. My first stop was the Grottos. There are some short day hikes there that take you to some waterfalls and a miniature gorge. They call the miniature gorge the “Ice Caves.” Other than some ice at the bottom of the gorge in one spot, I didn’t see anything I would call a cave. Despite the name, the miniature gorge was pretty cool.

The start of the miniature gorge at the Grotto Day Use Area

Next I drove to the historic town site of Independence. The site was an old mining town and has an elevation of approximately 10,900 feet. With that altitude, Independence didn’t last long in the harsh environment once the profit disappeared. Independence became a ghost town in 1890.

Inside the remains of one of the miner cabins

Looking out the door at the neighboring cabins.

The back of the General Store.

After seeing what was left of Independence, I went back to my accommodations and had dinner. After dinner, I walked across the street and found some more trails. I did a short hike up to Weller Lake.

Weller Lake with the reflection of Mt. Shimer

Saturday morning, I decided to another short hike; however, this time the terrain would be a little tougher. I hiked up to Linkins Lake, which has an elevation of 12,008 feet. I doubt the hike was much more than a mile. The problem with the hike was that it had some snowfields on slopes. Dealing with those snowfields jarred my knee a bit. I believe that I have survived and haven’t made things worse. Anyway, I made it to the lake, and it was beautiful. Or the area was beautiful since the lake still had a layer of ice on it.

Linkins Lake

Flowers next to Linkins Lake

After the hike, I headed home enjoying the drive over Independence Pass in the opposite direction.

Home again,