Dan and I drove up to 10,000 ft on the rough and rocky Lake Como road. Lake Como is the basecamp for the 14ers Little Bear, Blanca, and Ellingwood. What a pretty area to camp for a few nights.
Over Labor Day weekend 2017 Dan and I hiked 14ers in Colorado’s Sangre de Cristo Range. We summited Crestone Needle and Crestone Peak on Saturday and Humbolt Peak on Sunday. We took a group vote and the Crestones rank in our top five 14ers so far. Both involved fun scrambles on beautiful + mostly solid conglomerate rock. Humbolt was a mountain that involved hiking up and then down. It’s highlight was the fact that you could see the beauty of the Crestones from a good angle. Just kidding I was happy to have a hike like this after the 10 hours of struggle that was Saturday.
What’s not to like in the Medicine Bow’s Snowy Range? Heavy scented pine forests; fields of flowers in yellows, pinks, purples; and a dozen glittering alpine lakes whose only purpose seemed to be a glorious mirror for the craggy, rocky peaks above.
After an easier day hiking the Clear Creek Trail, my legs were feeling a whole lot better and ready for the climb up Bright Angel. While waiting for the sun to emerge above the canyon walls, I tried to warm up by drinking multiple cups of tea. Dan and I ate the last of our cold, smushed pumpkin muffins and left Bright Angel Campground around 9 AM.
Grand Canyon’s Clear Creek Trail is a great “rest day” activity if you’re staying at Phantom Ranch or Bright Angel campground in the winter. It stretches 9 miles long so you can choose your own out-and-back length. And emphasis is on winter activity because it is south facing and consequently is in the sun from sunrise to sunset. In summer, temperatures at the bottom of the canyon can exceed 100 F. But in January it was a balmy 50 degrees!
At the end of January 2017, Dan and I went on a three day backpacking trip in the Grand Canyon. It was as grand as promised! Part I is our winter backpacking descent from South Kaibib trailhead to Bright Angel Campground.
We had to [extensively] plan our food for 30 days in the middle of nowhere, Alaska. No refrigeration and everything had to fit in a 30 gallon steel drum. In summary, we succeeded – read about how we did it!
One of my favorite parts of our Alaskan adventure was a 5 day backpacking trip to Turquoise Lake. The soul-crushing bushwhacking and mosquitoes were a small price to pay for the incredible views.
Do you enjoy beautiful coastal scenery? Do you like backpacking? If you answered yes! then California’s Lost Coast trail is one for your list.
See how well I sold that?
So finally, after 2 years of thinking about it and planning it and molding our lives around it, we arrived at our dream-now-a-reality. Thirty days in the Alaskan wilderness.