Sunday, April 26, 2009

Boulder Mountain Parks are great

Three recent hikes in Boulder County Mountain Parks in three very different conditions. I used to take these for granted, of course. Study/work, then go running in near-wilderness. The first was at night, hiking with a friend up and around Flagstaff Mountain. Clear and warm, Boulder lights downhill.

The second nearly got scary -- started in Eldorado Canyon and hiked/climbed up and over to Shadow Canyon, then back up to Bear Peak, down Fern Canyon, and finally up to Chautauqua. It was raining at the start, then everything was icing up on top, and then a muddy mess down on the Mesa Trail. It took a few hours to warm back up.

Then yesterday took Will-J on my favorite loop, up Saddle Rock, then E.M. Greenman to Green Mountain, then down Ranger Trail and Gregory Canyon Trail.

Hiking along with Will-J sleeping in the backpack and quiet fog along the ridge to Green Mountain -- quite peaceful. Very surprised to see a large number of trees down. In many cases these were snapped off in the middle. I think it may have been the combination of heavy snow and high wind. This will change the short term impression of the area certainly.

Always surprised at how few people use the trails. I am certain from an ecological perspective the Parks are overrun, but considering the size of Boulder and the number of hikers, the place seems empty most days. Sure it was foggy/rainy yesterday, but still I expected to see more than seven or so people hiking around.

1 comment:

catherinekleier said...

We just had another snowstorm and lost part of our lilac bush. It's easy to see how heavy, wet snow can destroy tree limbs like this. BCPOS is fantastic, and they always have a lot of money as long as big homes exist in Boulder county. They have a pretty large tax base and the county gives a lot of it to parks and open space. This is what pays the summer squirrel work!