Feb 6, 2012 at 2:47 pm #1285285
Some buddies and I are planning on driving out west (from Atlanta) to backpack for a week. We are looking to go somewhere in Wyoming, Colorado or southern Montana. We would like to keep the trip 30 miles or less. Any recommendations would be greatFeb 6, 2012 at 2:52 pm #1835405
@ngatelLocale: Southern California
For those 3 states I would hang a map on the wall, throw a dart at it, and you can probably find a nice loop that way based on where the dart sticks. :)Feb 6, 2012 at 3:07 pm #1835413
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
I can't recommend anything better than Wyoming's Wind River Range. Do note that in the Rockies most years, mid-July is the height of mosquito season (on the positive side, it is often the height of wildflower season). It also can freeze at night, or even snow. Be prepared!Feb 6, 2012 at 3:23 pm #1835421
@b-g-2-2Locale: Silicon Valley
You might want to mention how you feel about grizzly bears.
If you hate bears, there are some places that you need to avoid. If you love bears, there are other places that you need to check out.
–B.G.–Feb 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm #1835447
Ive only seen a few black bears from a distance, but bears are not a problem or deterrent.
As I stated earlier, we will be driving so we can hike for 2-3 days, pick up and hike somewhere else. Thanks againFeb 7, 2012 at 7:44 am #1835693
Bump for todays crowdFeb 7, 2012 at 8:09 am #1835713
I'd recommend the Four Pass Loop near Aspen. It's 26 mile loop that crosses four high passes and puts you near a bunch of 14,000+ foot peaks (Maroon, N. Maroon, Snowmass, Pyramid). Trails Illustrated 128 (Maroon Bells) covers the whole loop. If possible, go during the week to avoid (some of) the crowds. This has been a low snow year so far in CO so the passes might be snow-free in mid-July but it wouldn't hurt to bring an ice axe and know how to use it.
[Edit: Drink beers at Aspen Brewing Company after the trip.]Feb 8, 2012 at 5:22 am #1836145
For Wyoming, I recommend the Grand Teton National Park with Yellowstone just next door! I hiked between the mountains and saw waterfalls after taking a boat ride across the lake. Find out more below. Joe from Backpack and GearFeb 8, 2012 at 10:43 am #1836285
Driving that far for only a week on the trail is a pretty steep price, but it's your time.
Only 30 miles in a week is also quite low. You plan on fishing a lot?
Anyway, I agree there's good stuff just about anywhere in those 3 states. If you were to do the 4 Pass Loop near Aspen, I'd strongly encourage flying into Aspen (view my trip report.) I prefer the Wind Rivers myself, but that or Tetons will be a lot longer on the road instead of the trail. I'm not relishing the drive there from IN when I get to go back unless I can find a partner to pick me up at an airport as I did last time.Feb 8, 2012 at 11:44 am #1836319
Its me and 3 other buddies, so the price of gas (~$650 total) will be much less than flying into Aspen ($400/person). We will alternate driving and sleeping and can be in Aspen in under 30 hrs.
As for distance, its a vacation so we are in no hurry to finish a 30mi loop in 2 days.Feb 8, 2012 at 12:32 pm #1836360
If I had a choice I would go to the Wind Rivers. But, in order to save some time and gas, I just did a trip to the Holy Cross Wilderness just south of Vail. I did about 30 miles in 3 days. I could have easily stretched it to 5 days and spent more time fishing exploring. Here is a link to some trip photos.
If you would like to hear some more details shoot me a PM.
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