Jan 21, 2011 at 7:41 am #1268025
Hello. Planning a week long trip to Colorado in July. Planning to cover 10-12 miles/day and looking at routes in RMNP and the Eagles Nest and Holy Cross wilderness areas. Any suggestions? Thanks!Jan 21, 2011 at 12:19 pm #1686718
Looking for a loop, out and back or a thru-hike? Are you limited to these areas close to Denver or not?Jan 21, 2011 at 2:00 pm #1686761
We'll be driving from Ohio in one car, so a loop is preferred. Not necessarily limited to the Denver vicinity, but I'd like to keep our drive time to under 24 hours. Leadville is 22 hours from Columbus and RMNP is 21.Jan 24, 2011 at 1:46 pm #1687918
The easiest way to backpack for that length of a trip is to get into s.w. Colorado but that is beyond your driving time requirements.
If you want a significant backpacking loop or trip in RMNP you'll likely have to get a bit creative. The Park it seems is almost more a private preserve for the environmental scientists and wildlife biologists and a tourist spot than a place to go backpacking. Many of the old trails have been abandoned by the park and camping allowed only at certain sites and by permit. Their is also now a bear canister rule and I believe a carry out human waste rule.
That being said I have been working on an on/off trail route in the northern part of the park, this is a lesser traveled and wild area, away from the tourist buses and all that. The mostly gentle alpine tundra in the Mummy range allows one to link up different trails and put together a larger trip. I need to do more map work though to get a better idea of mileages and details.
There is also this http://bp2.trimbleoutdoors.com/ViewTrip.aspx?tripId=399192.
In the Holy Cross Wilderness you have a multi-day loop, the Cross Creek, Fall Creek loop encircling Mt. of the Holy Cross with an option to climb the mountain at the end of your trip.
I have drawn up some large loops linking together several trails in the heart of the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness with options to climb several 14ers and/or high 13ers. Portions of the CDT and CT can be/are utilized. Loops from 30-50 miles can be accomplished here.
If any of this interests you then p.m. with any specifics you are interested in.Jan 24, 2011 at 2:00 pm #1687925
@funnymoLocale: Sunshine State
Two friends & I did Cross Creek / Falls Creek in Holy Cross late this past Summer and it was a great time. You can climb the Mt. as Aaron said to add a twist to the end – but we did not due to time.Jan 24, 2011 at 3:15 pm #1687956
@cameronLocale: Midland, Texas
One thing I would suggest if you are coming from Ohio is to make sure you have time to aclimitize. Last trip I went up to fast and was pretty miserable.
I like the Indian Peaks area a lot but long hikes would be harder to plan.
Its not a scenic as Indian Peaks and Collegiate Peaks but there are several good loops in the Lost Creek Wilderness. A route I have been looking at would be to go up Payne Gultch Trail, than cross country along the Kenosha Mountains (look up the "alphabetizer route" on summitpost.org) from there I would connect to the Brookside McCurdy Trail and do one of the loops through the eastern end of the wilderness before returning to my starting point. I think this loop would keep you busy for that amount of time.Jan 24, 2011 at 7:55 pm #1688055
Thanks to you all for your advice and suggestions. I'll take a look at your ideas and may follow up with some of you for additional details. Until then, happy trails.
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