Guides and Trips

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Mt Galbraith (7,169') Abort, Jeffco Open Space Park
by jimlarkey on Jul 15, 2014
Golden, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 2.0 miles
Got bummed out by the weather: Colorado monsoonal pattern began a few days ago, and thunderstorm was approaching.  Hope to get back to this hike in cooler, more stable weather.Mt Galbraith Park was Jefferson County's (Jeffco) first hiker-only park.....and our favorite 4-legged friends are permitted, on leash.As short as the hike was, one of our group spotted Ms Moose just below a neighboring ridge line.The mining history of the area is interesting,...
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Steep Mountain (9,538') Celebration, 1,000th Summit, RMNP
by jimlarkey on Jul 06, 2014
Estes Park, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 3.5 miles
"Mountain Jim" chose Steep Mountain in Rocky Mountain National Park to celebrate his 1,000th lifetime summit, and celebrate his 75th circuit around the Sun."Howard" was unable to join us on the climb, but he did leave a note for Jim on the Summit, from a previous day's climb.  We feasted on sandwiches, G&T, chips, brownies, special gorp, and amazingly a "BD cake"......Hostess Cupcakes, complete with a BD candle.  It would have been...
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"Golgotha" (11,176'), Sky Ranch
by jimlarkey on Jun 21, 2014
Bellvue, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 7.7 miles
"Golgotha" ???What's in a summit's name?You won't find "Golgotha" on any government or commercial maps.  It's a local name that the nearby Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp chose for this rocky outcrop on Comanche Peak's (12,702') east shoulder.The outcrop is prominently visible from Sky Ranch, and was the site of 3 crosses built by the campers, commemorating the biblical Calvary.  The US Forest Service removed the crosses from the public land.The Beaver Creek/Fish...
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Fort Collins First Water Works
by jimlarkey on Jun 14, 2014
Fort Collins, Colorado, United States
Walking | 0.1 miles
Once a year, the First Water Works of Fort Collins is open to the public, hosted by the "Friends of the Water Works", a Poudre Landmark Foundation auxiliary.  Also the Poudre Fire Authority was present and offered a demo of their equipment.The Water Works was built to improve the water supply for fire fighting, a problem which plagued the young city's wooden buildings.An interesting "factoid":  the Water Works pumps were driven by...
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Grand Marais, MI Walkabout
by jimlarkey on May 06, 2014
Grand Marais, Michigan, United States
10.6 miles
Just a simple, easy walkabout to some of our favorite Lake Superior places, in the off-season before the tourist hit.
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Chalk Bluffs, Pawnee National Grassland
by jimlarkey on Apr 01, 2014
Grover, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 8.0 miles
"Township 11 N., R.65 W.--The southern part of this township is gently rolling prairie land with a few scattering valleys and sinks.  The northern tier of sections are broken by chalk bluffs, especially sections 7, 8, and 9.  Water is a little scarce here, but can be obtained by digging.  Good native grasses.  The bluff land is worthless, excepting for grazing purposes.  Other land worth from $8 to $10 per acre.  Annual...
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Mining District Loop - Abort
by jimlarkey on Mar 05, 2014
Leadville, Colorado, United States
Snowshoeing | 4.4 miles
The map we had of the Mining District Trails clearly stated "...should not be used for navigation."  We followed a snowmobile track to the top of Breece Hill, and decided that the map might be wrong, from what we were seeing from our track.  Sure 'nough, the Mining District Loop was drawn wrong on the map, as well as the contour lines.Well....not exactly.  Good example of not "Staying Found".  We thought we were on...
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Monarch Lake Loop, Granby
by jimlarkey on Feb 27, 2014
Granby, Colorado, United States
Snowshoeing | 5.9 miles
You know the hike is good when your adrenalin is up...moose!  We didn't see any, but I'm sure they saw us.  The upper meadow at Buchanan Creek was just loaded with fresh moose tracks and scat.  The trail was obliterated by the deep hoof prints.  Snow was too deep off-trail for escape route, so either forward or back....moose permitting :-)  Fortunately, we didn't confront any."Steam Donkey"...Do you know what it is?If you...
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Battle Mountain (12,044') - Aborted 2nd Time
by jimlarkey on Feb 23, 2014
Estes Park, Colorado, United States
Snowshoeing | 4.0 miles
I've been "skunked" by Battle Mountain before  , and you've got to respect the peaks when there is whiteout above treeline.It was a fun trip descending off-trail in the fresh powder.Battle Mountain showed me her summit once in the summer, and I'm thankful she was so gracious.
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Ranked Peak 6712 (6,712'), Bushwhack
by jimlarkey on Feb 19, 2014
Poudre Park, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 3.8 miles
Part of a continuing series of "get to know a gully" :-)"Plans are nothing; planning is everything"Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890-1969) I planned (past tense) to bag Ranked Peak 6712 (6,712') from the Wintersteen Trail, as hiked by JoeGrim.  But a bridge closure in Gateway Park due to 2013 flood damage, and open water in the Cache la Poudre River forced me to do impromptu "planning".I saw a gully near the Greyrock TH, that I...
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"South Greyrock" (7,309') Loop, South Approach, Bushwhack
by jimlarkey on Feb 12, 2014
Poudre Park, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 3.1 miles
Part of a continuing series of "get to know a gully" :-)It's been a couple years since last I stood on the summit of "South Greyrock".  While walking on the Greyrock Trail recently, I walked by a gully that is on the south face of "South Greyrock"....wonder if it would take me to the top?Once you leave the Greyrock Trail, it's all up!  Route finding to the snow-covered summit was pretty easy....
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2013 Winter Solstice Celebration, Idylwilde Pipeline Tour
by jimlarkey on Dec 21, 2013
Loveland, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 2.2 miles
Maybe someday the USFS and the City of Loveland will construct a figure-8 hiking trail, that follows the now inoperative Idylwilde Pipeline.  
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Interpretive Loop, Foothills Trail of Reservoir Ridge Natural Area
by jimlarkey on Nov 13, 2013
Mountain View, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 5.9 miles
5 minutes wind-shield time, thought I'd try out the new 2013 connector trail-head on N Overland Trail, that ties into the Foothills Trail system.  The new trail-head takes pressure off the limited parking Michaud TH, and  joins the Michaud spur just south of Claymore Lake.The highpoint of the Intrepretive Loop is an overlook of Pleasant Valley and the "Cache".  Couple of different versions of the "Cache la Poudre" story can be found here....
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Lookout Spur, Soapstone Prairie Natural Area via Red Mountain Open Space
by jimlarkey on Nov 11, 2013
Wellington, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 7.7 miles
Nice time of the year to visit Red Mountain Open Space (RMOS) car was the only car at the trail-head.  My goal was to explore the the westerly side of Soapstone Prairie, accessed from RMOS.  Both public areas butt up against each other along the CO-Wy border.I stumbled upon a cool lookout point, that is not shown on the Soapstone trail map, but was obviously visited by many before.  The summit was marked...
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Redstone Canyon Road
by jimlarkey on Nov 02, 2013
Masonville, Colorado, United States
Walking | 13.4 miles
Inspired by Joe Grim's trip, I was looking for a no-vertical, no-bushwhack, easy-on-the-joints hike (walk?) to test out my passenger-side joints.  What better than a road on a blue sky day, temps in the 50's, and creek as a companion for the full hike.Don't be intimidated by the signs....the road is public.  Further, of the 40 or so cars that passed me, all but less than a handful waved at me as...
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Windy Gap Lake, Ranked Peaks 8340, 8264, and 8399
by jimlarkey on Oct 12, 2013
Red Feather Lakes, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 8.5 miles
No rope, no belt, no belay to do a 5.6 climb on soft-ranked Peak  Nope, just climb a tree.Soft-ranked Peak 8340 was "one tough nut to crack".  The summit block looked formidable from our approach.  My partner and I explored the N'ly side, and found two routes that followed fault lines, visible here.  I proofed the ascent on the E'ly fault, and descended the W'ly fault.  Exposure on both is...
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Castle Peak (14,265'), St'd Route, NE Ridge
by jimlarkey on Aug 28, 2013
Ashcroft, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 6.3 miles
Back at the 11,200' 4WD trail-head, sharing a Dale's Pale Ale, I asked Kendrick, a 29-year-old ridge-runner, if he had seen the 3 climbers that appeared to be off-route, trying to down-climb the cliff-bands to the right of the NW ridge couloir.  "Yes, I was at the bottom after down-climbing the couloir, and yelled up to them to get off the cliff-bands, and go back to the loose scree in the couloir....
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Humboldt Peak (14,064'), Access, South Colony Lakes Trail
by jimlarkey on Aug 07, 2013
Cottonwood, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 9.1 miles
Since ET does not offer an elegant way of differentiating tracks, this page shows the two different routes to access the South Colony Lakes Basin; (1) the Forest Service Road 120, (2) the "shortcut trail"...1.2 miles  shorter, 450' less climbing, but steeper.The trip report on the Humboldt climb can be viewed here.
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Humboldt Peak (14,064'), St'd Route, S Colony Lakes
by jimlarkey on Aug 08, 2013
Cottonwood, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 4.3 miles
2 hrs up, 1/2 hr on the summit, 2 hrs few hours spent in a long time.  Humboldt Peak, the "easy one", offered us some outstanding views of it's neighbors, the "big ones"....Crestone Needle and Peak.It's been 5 years since I've been in the South Colony Lakes Basin, climbing the Crestone Needle.  A lot has changed with the 4WD trail-heads, since 2008.  Details on the access routes can be viewed here.Our...
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Lion Lake #1, Wild Basin, RMNP
by jimlarkey on Aug 01, 2013
Allenspark, Colorado, United States
Hiking | 12.0 miles
11:00 AM turn-around time, "carved in stone".  I left my partner at the Ouzel junction to explore flowers, while I continued up the Thunder Lake Trail.  A couple of weeks ago, I was on the same trail, and came to a fork...didn't take it, and trekked up to Thunder Lake.This time, I "came to a fork...and I took it"!  The Lion Lakes Trail ascends steeply at first, but only ascends another 1000', until reaching...

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