Saturday, March 31, 2012

La Veta/Trinchera Peak (the hard way)

We were in La Veta for the weekend:


And hoped to climb West Spanish Peak, one of my Colorado to-do's.  Unfortunately, the road from Cucharas Pass to Cordova Pass was snowed in, and we backtracked to the road up Cucharas Creek to Blue Lake.  This road was blocked by snow, too, close to the highway, but we started hiking anyway.  We thought about turning around at Blue Lake, but one step led to another and soon we were on the approach to Trinchera Peak (13,517 ft.):


More photos here.

It's a striking summit, and triggered a lot of good memories for us.  We spent a fair amount of time in 2001 climbing in the Sangres, and here we were revisiting the sights from a new perspective.  The Mt. Blanca Massif:


Culebra Peak:


And of course the dramatic views down into the San Luis Valley.  Of course we'll be back to try West Spanish Peak when the snow melts:



It was a big day - the only way we made it up there was by following the packed-down snowmobile track on the North Fork Trail to treeline.  Even then, there was a fair amount of postholing.  It's good to see a fair amount of snow up there even with such a warm and dry March.  Plus we were apparently the first ones up there this year:


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

I-25 and 15th Street

I've used the 15th Street bridge on my commute for 10 years or so.  Then Monday half of it was gone:


They're apparently leaving the other half until the new half is completed - here's the official story.  Better photos from Denver Urbanism.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Deckers/South Platte overnight

While Northern Arizona is finally getting a winter, we're locked into early spring.  We headed for Deckers and the USFS Platte River campground:


Long Scraggy Peak:

Will-J in his environment:


Deckers even has a nice playground: 

Although good luck following all the rules:

I've written about this type of sign before - you have to be careful about listing all those prohibited activities because somebody's going to think that everything else is permitted.  Here's another good one.  That little park certainly looks like a good place for someone to practice his/her highly-amplified guitar solos, and I don't see how that would be hazardous to anyone.  Maybe they'll have to amend the sign to prohibit that, too.  Although certainly this sign isn't as silly as the nature-disclaimers I've seen.  

It was chilly in the morning of course, but "chilly" like we should be experiencing in mid-May, not mid-March.  Then on Sunday we headed north past the Colorado Trail crossing I hadn't been for a few years.  I'm hoping snow, but it looks like we're set into this warmth for the next few weeks. 

Friday, March 16, 2012

New word: Whaff

Whaff: "Whaff is the tone of explorers who have been given more maps than they could ever use and who never have to leave their own rooms."

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Corona Arch

We've made a few stops at Corona Arch over the years - I always wanted to climb to the top.  It turns out I wasn't thinking big enough - see these guys swinging around off the top like maniacs.