When: November 11th, 2014 thru November 17th (barely enough time)
Who: Drove to meet-up with a crew: Mr Chris Storms + Sasquatch driving in from Oregon, Dirtbag AL: new friend roadtripping all over US and friend of Chris, Teresa: dirtbagging it with AL, and of course Caitlin + Andy driving in from Colorado!
Bouldering Areas Visited:
- Catacombs on the Sherwin Plateau
- Happy Boulders
- One lone boulder in Mammoth Lakes on a cold, windy day
- Side of I-70 at 2am just past Moab turnoff (Where caitlin and I slept due to late departure from Denver)
- Catacombs Bouldering Area = amazing free camping location with beautiful views. Large area to camp in with numerous options.
- Hotsprings Parking Lot
- Forest Service Land just past the Owen River Gorge Sport Climbing Area. Drive as going to 3rd parking lot but continue on dirt roads until you find a suitable dispersed camping spot.
- On way home stopped at Bryce Canyon for a night of camping and a surprise sunrise engagement PROPOSAL!
- Our three vehicle crew all had vehicles we could sleep-in making it easy to set-up camp anywhere, protect us from the constant wind, and be mobile as we explored the numerous unique stops in the area.
View of Mt. Whitney and the Eastside of the Sierra Mountain Range (from Catacomb Boulders):
Bouldering at the Catacombs in Bishop California:
Bishop’s least known climbing area was easily one of our favorites for our crew. Hiding in the shadows of the heavily publicized Buttermilks and Happy/Sad Boulders, this bouldering area would be the crème de la crème in other locations. A short walk from the parking lot (and camping zone) and you encounter dozen of heavily pocketed walls, 15 ft tall, with perfect flat landings. Beautiful lichen covers the walls with an incredible backdrop. This was a great place to get into the mindset of the highball bouldering that was coming and stretch out after 20+ hours of travel.
Caitlin all smiles after hitting the top jug:
Chris working on the moves “I am a Beautiful Man”:
Located a short-drive outside of the town of Bishop, CA it sits high above the Owen River gorge with impressive views of the Sierra Eastside. There was no one else out there but us!! Below is the view from where we were camping:
A few more shots from this great full day of bouldering. We spent 6-hours on the rocks (it helps when the cars/campsite/lunch are no more than a 5 min walk away):
A Day Exploring the Happy Boulders:
After breakfast at the Catacombs and 2nd breakfast at the world famous Schat’s Bakery, we made it to the trailhead of the Happy Boulders. A quick but stout hike in the already warm temps landed-us in a paradise full of mammoth boulders. Walking down the trail and passing hundreds of climbs that are recognized from countless videos, magazines, and website posts, I was very excited to be in the Mecca.
Dirtbag Al and Theresa quickly took off and were ticking every highball moderate they could find.
Caitlin stepping outside of her comfort zone with the highball Duck Soup on the Savannah boulder:
Dirtbag Al with a long reach to stick the crux on Ketron Classic v4:
The last light fades over the Sierra’s as we watch from the rim of the Happy Boulder’s:
A few more photos from the day (hover over for descriptions):
Teresa on the crazy pockets of Sixty Foot Woman:
Hiking out and Dirtbag Al spots one more highball he couldn’t resist and sent it in the dark:
Wild Willy’s Hot Springs:
Dirtbag Al was given some directions to these hot springs and after a hard day of climbing in the Happy Boulder’s, we followed his seemingly random turns in the middle of the valley until we arrived at a sizable parking lot with numerous cars in it. A quick hike down the boardwalk and our crew found ourselves bathing in our own hidden pool while all of the other visitors were in the main, larger pool. The stars were unbelievable that night as we sat for as long as our bodies could stand it, basking in the moonless night.
6:30am Sunrise at Wild Willy’s Hot Springs: while not well publicized the BLM does an great job with the boardwalks and conservation. Also it was getting pretty cold overnight.
Dirtbag Al and Tersea enjoying the 8AM morning dip before heading out for the day:
Of course the local custom is to bath au naturale…which is a great reason to get naked in the wild!! We were pretty beat from the last two crazy days of climbing and the long drives to get there, so we headed-up to the city of Mammoth Falls, relaxed, saw a lot of ducks, found a boulder, and did a little outdoor hiking. That evening we drove down to just outside the Owen River Gorge sport climbing area and camped for the night.
Our last day in the area and we headed to the world-renown Buttermilks for some serious ass-kicking. The sendage was extremely low that day on these stout boulders, however the stoke was high being in the presence of monster boulders.
This problem called the Buttermilk Stem being sent by Chris below (and Al Photo #1, #2, #3, #4) is an example of the crazy types of climbing in Bishop. What feels like a impossible start and moves can quickly be sent with the right technique and beta and shows that something rated only a V1 can be a classic for anyone:
The Buttermilks were crowded as it was a beautiful fall Sunday and attracts climbing tourists from around the world. Once early afternoon happened it quickly cleared-out as it seemed most people were driving back to LA. As it calmed down and after we had our fill of attempted sendage, we had an enjoyable stroll through all of the boulder field sightseeing the famous lines (that literally had 20+ people standing around earlier) and watching the hardmen/hardwomen work these massive, beautiful boulders strewn across the hillside. Also standing underneath the famous PeaBody boulders made your sphincter tighten-up with just the thought of climbing something that big.
Sunset happens quick this time of the year when you are this close to the mountain range. By 4:30 the sun had already been gone for nearly an hour as we took one last look at this amazing place:
At the end of the day we all said our goodbyes with Chris heading north towards Oregon with Al and Teresa following and Caitlin and I made a long journey to Bryce Canyon to spend the night. Hint: arriving at 1am in the morning on a freezing cold Sunday night means free entry and front-row parking for the morning spectacle.
Bryce Canyon Surprise on the way home:
Read More Here: http://andylibrande.com/wedding/about/engagement/
Sights on the Drive from Denver to California: Pictures from: 7am, 8am, 10:30am, 11:30am, 3pm, 6pm, Star Trails that night.
Group Photo at the Catacombs:
When: October 1st-2nd, 2014
Who: Andy and Caitlin
Highbridge Hills is home to one of the great disc golf destinations in the United States. Situated on over 500 acres this isolated complex houses 6 full courses and several additional alternate courses that use various teepads of the main courses (something like 120+ holes!). The area of Disc Golf is huge and the location is in one of the most beautiful spots in Wisconsin.
Caitlin and I were lucky to play two of the main courses there, Blueberry Hill and Granite Ridge, and get just a taste of this mecca of disc golf. We were in the area due to a wedding some of our best friends and since we were going to make the trek to Wisconsin anyways, we knew we had to visit. We spent one afternoon playing one course and one morning playing another course while camping out overnight at the complex.
Here are a few pictures from an awesome adventure. I have also included some more details to help any other people that may be planning a trek here as the details on this place are surprisingly lacking (considering it is a destination place).
We were greeted with an amazing full-rainbow on Hole #11 of Blueberry Hill on our first night (click image for full-size, basket is in bottom RH corner):
Blueberry Hills Disc Course:
We arrived to the complex after 4 hours of driving mostly country roads. We left Minneapolis after picking up Caitlin’s sister’s car in downpouring rain and we drove almost the whole time in that same rain. Miraculously it was only lightly raining when we pulled up to the seemingly abandoned course.
It was the middle of the week and it was raining so the lack of people around was not surprising. After reading every map on the wall in their unique clubhouse and realizing that the camping was in a different place, and still being unsure of what to do since we were told people would be there, we just decided that light was fading quickly and we were going to get at least a few holes completed.
We started on Blueberry Hill and after a few holes the rain lightened-up and eventually came to a halt. The views were limited but everything we did see was incredibly beautiful.
Hole # 8 played through some really cool forest into an open field and then back into the forest. Lots of variety!
After losing a disc in some really thick grass, soaking ourselves while looking for it and generally wasting a lot of precious time, we were greeted with an amazing full-rainbow on Hole #11:
The sunset continued:
We finished the round in the dark after getting confused on the course and playing a few holes of one of the other courses there. Afterwards we headed to the campground area for the night.
Granite Ridge Disc Golf Course:
We awoke Thursday morning to clouds but no rain. After a early breakfast we were on the course at 9am. Granite Ridge was my favorite of the two courses as it had quite the variety of terrain (everything from tight trees, to open fields, to doglegs, water hazards, and swamps).
Hole #7 Granite Ridge is a tricky bastard. It calls for water on the lefthand side and you can’t see this large pond hidden behind a small amount of brush. Aim right. Her disc is visible and looked like it landed right on the edge of the green; however it was <5 ft from hitting the lake.
Myself teeing off and smacking a tree on Hole #6. To provide a little context on the height of some of these amazing trees on the course:
We had pretty bad weather and luckily it cleared up enough for beautiful views of the surrounding Chequamegon National Forest. Hole #11 on Granite Ridge:
After about 3 hours of somewhat slow playing (at least 4 times looking for discs but found all of them!) we ended our round, ran into Mike and Jonathan at the clubhouse and headed on the rest of our adventure to the Lake Superior area.
We just had a taste of the courses on the property and while unlikley we will be in the area anytime soon I hope that I can come back and experience the rest of the course.
Read more on camping at Highbridge Hills, other logistics and a few more photos:Read More»
What: Our good friend Andrew was getting hitched in 3 weeks…so we threw him a good-ole bachelor party
Where: Lake Granby, Colorado ; 8,300 ft elevation
When: September 13th-14th, 2014
An early morning we left Denver after it literally snowed 24 hours earlier. As we drove-up and over Berthoud Pass the weather was incredible and we were stoked to be on our way. A quick 2.5 hour drive from denver and we were at the lake! Due to the size of the crew we had to take two trips to everyone to the campsite. The 2nd trip was a bit rough as the wind was strong and we were crammed into the boat:
1st order of business at the campsite: Beer-Drinking group shot:
The wind calmed down and we spent the whole afternoon waterskiing some excellent water. The water temp was the same as the air temp so the transition was freezing cold (in or out) but once you were in there with a wet-suit it was worth it:
We cooked ribeyes on the campfire like men, watched a beautiful evening happen around us, and had some campfire fun:
When: Saturday Night July 12th thru July 13th, 2014
What: Camped at the base of the “The Acres” /Citadel bouldering area on 700L (have climbed here before). Arrived late Sat night and night bouldered until 1AM. Woke up and did trad climbing at the Nautilus all day.
A late Saturday start as we had to work around Caitlin’s new nursing schedule, however it worked out perfectly. We arrived in Vedauwoo right as the sunset started to dip behind the horizon and luckily were able to locate a campsite without issue within walking distance of the Acres Boulders. After quickly establishing our campsite we headed up the trail to the boulders.
Jake about to send this problem under the light of the lantern (please note Caitlin is completely passed out in this photo!):
Rambo sending this large slab problem called “Organic” under the cover of darkness (and I am sure my flashes were only hurting and not helping): (Link for full size)
In the dark I had a mishap taking photos an accidentally broke my lens: LINK HERE
Stars over the Citadel formation where we were climbing. Taken from our campsite:
Next morning we cooked breakfast on the back of the truck and headed over to climb at the Nautilus. We were only relying on the Mountain Project app for directions and none of us had spent any time researching so figuring out where we were was not much fun for this vast area. But eventually we just started climbing some cracks where we had no idea of names/grades:
Tough climbing on beautiful rock:
Then we wandered over to a striking crack on one of the faces. It took Rambo a bit to climb it but it was amazing. We all tried it and it kicked all of our asses with Rambo leading it and Jake sending but the rest of us struggled through the crux. It wasn’t until some other guys wandered over that we realized we were on one of the area classics “Friday the 13th“:
Beautiful quick weekend of climbing!
Camping under the stars
Bouldering on Independence Pass
Hiking to the Base of the Maroon Bells
Disc Golfing at Colorado Mountain College in Carbondale
Caitlin and I packed a lot of activities into just a weekend. Below are the highlights.
We left Denver late and hit Kenosha Pass right during a beautiful sunset:
On the way up we had a delicious late night dinner at Eddyline Brewery.
We were planning on camping in the truck so we drove up FS 390 which has a ton of car-camping options and plenty of others were already out there. It was late on a friday but eventually we found a perfect level spot for the truck.The stars were amazing that night and I spent quite some time photographing them and the Milky Way:
Beaver ponds by our campsite the next morning:
Next morning we got up and drove up and over independence pass stopping at a bouldering area which was perfect for a short session on some easier blocks. After climbing we headed into Snowmass where we met up with the rest of Caitlin’s family.
The next day we had a beautiful hike up in the Maroon Bells area. It was my first time in this specific spot as we normally tend to stay away from the tourist parts of Colorado. Glad we went up there as it was totally worth it.
We hiked all the way to Crater Lake (tons of snow for June 22nd!). Jon and Laura:
Some some moose on the drive in:
Afterwards we went back to the condo and watched the devastating ending to the USA vs. Germany match. Everyone started heading home, however Caitlin and I stopped in Carbondale to sample the Colorado Mountain College Disc Golf course. We are quite glad we did as the views were amazing (courtesy deer in the background):
Lots of fun stuff in a short period of time.
What: A quick overnight stay at the Dinosaur National Monument on the northwest border of Colorado/Utah
When: April 5th and 6th, 2014
Why: Took a road trip to Utah to ski, took a detour on the way home. Good decision.
A little over three hours after skiing Snowbird resort in white out conditions we arrived at the campground. Sunset happened immediately after we arrived and we snapped a few photos before it disappeared. We set up camp for a nice early-April evening. The previous days were spent skiing decent late season snow in Park City and Snowbird for a late spring break trip.
Split Mountain at sunset. Three minutes later and the light had completely disappeared.
Sunset facing the other direction:
Green River campground. The Cottonwood trees looked especially creepy with no leaves and a mostly full moon:
The next morning we got up and hiked around this beautiful area on the “Sounds of Silence” trail; a 3 mile loop it provided a great view of the geological insanity of the area. It was April and we started early so it was actually a bit chilly at first. Then we started climbing up a very unique trail that switch backs along the bottom of the ravine I am standing in below. Parts of the hike you were completely surrounded by tall dirt “dunes”.
The top was worth the effort with Split Mountain looming over us:
After the hike we made our way to the Dinosaur Quarry visitor center. This is a 40ft tall wall of dinosaur bones that one guy randomly stumbled upon 100 years ago. Many of the fossils ended up in the Carnegie Museum, however what is left is quite amazing to look at:
This is a massive park and we only did the easiest part. Sounds like a good excuse to go back.
On the way home we were reminded that yes, it is still winter. Gore Range outside of Silverthorne, CO.
When: Sat November 16th thru Tues November 19th, 2013
Where: Red Rocks Park just outside of Las Vegas, Nevada staying mainly at the Red Rocks Campground
What: A long weekend exploring and climbing in one incredible desert
Day #1: The Kraft Boulders:
An early Saturday morning arrival to Las Vegas had us out to the Kraft Boulders before mid-day and right as everyone else decided to show. Pulling into the parking lot we knew that it was going to be a busy day at the boulders which is understandable considering it’s proximity to the city, convenience of parking, and an simple access trail to the huge boulder field surrounding the base of the mountain. After checking out a few key boulders on our hike in we settled in at a isolated boulder in the Gateway Canyon section where we spent several hours exploring the area’s problems.
As the day quickly progress the shade quickly engulfed our location. We moved back around the bend to the main cluster and played around on many more boulders, met lots of people who were visiting like we were, and had Sasquatch occasionally bark at the roaming packs of pad-people. Additionally we encountered an large amount of an unique flower bush that I was lucky enough to document the many different species observed (link to picture).
Being in the desert this time of the year is a sensory overload. Direct sun with no breeze and it was 100 degrees, 10 mins later as the sun dips behind the peak you have to put on pants and a heavy jacket.
Day #2: Windy Peak Boulders:
Bumping down a dirt road for 20 mins is apparently all we needed to separate ourselves from the hustle and bustle of the previous day. After being around 50-70 climbers the day prior it was a relief to be the lone car parked at the trailhead for the Windy Peak boulders. A simple hike through amazing terrain found us at the Fish Head boulder. This 30 min hike was only slowed-down by the youngest dog in the group, Zion, as not having any idea what was causing all of that prickly pain.
Only a dog with the name of Beans would still be smiling during the process of ripping cactus thorns from his pads:
The Fish Head boulder is one of the most beautiful massive chunks of rock I have seen. Perched high on the hillside, it is easy to see from the parking lot and features a corridor of perfect climbs, perfect landings, and a great spot to hang-out in the sun.
Step inside the Fish Head boulder and one begins to see the true beauty. The climbing is a long wall of progressively taller problems ranging in the moderate grade. Overhanging these climbs is the upper mouth of the Fish head making for an impressive backdrop like none I have ever seen before.
The Starting Hold of Bait and Tackle, a perfect V1 with an incredible backdrop:
Chris sending Mas Mu (v6), a striking problem right in the middle of the corridor:
The winter days are short and we climbed as long and as late as our hunger allowed attempting to spend every possible minute absorbing this boulder-strewn valley.
Moving our way back to the car we stopped at the Sting boulder, moving again as the sun began to fade. We scoped the Le Cheval area for future missions and finished out the session in the moonless dark on the Warm-up boulder.
Hiking out the moon rose and lit the path through the thick and wild lands of the desert:
Day #3: Rest Day + Evening Session at Kraft + the Strip:
Monday morning we woke up pretty sore from the previous 2 full days of climbing, packed-up camp, and headed to a local Disc Golf course for some fun. Great little course that was perfect for stretching the muscles but not overly exerting yourself.
Just as the evening began to come upon us we headed back to the Kraft boulders, passing the crowds as they departed. A brief sunset singled as the last climbers left the area and we began our session. We climbed for 3 hours past sunset in solitude spending time on the Potato Chips boulder, the Warm-up Boulders, and the Barndoor boulder.
The Glow of Las Vegas as Chris sends the dynamic Dusty Coffee (v4) on the Barndoor boulder:
High-Fiving an awesome trip:
Three day’s climbing in the Red Rocks desert has really inspired me to make sure I come back and continue to explore.
When: October 12th-14th, 2014
Where: Palisade, Colorado and Fruita, Colorado
Who: Giant Crew: Paige, Bobby, Andrew, Whitney, Ben, Beth, Dan, Cassie, Stephen, Sarah, Caitlin, and Myself
- Free Camping thanks to Government Shut-down — CHECK
- Free Wine thanks to numerous awesome wineries — CHECK
- Free workout courtesy of ~25 miles of biking on roads for free wine — CHECK
- Free hang-over cure by Mountain Biking the beautiful trails of Fruita — CHECK
Whitney organized a weekend where we spent Saturday cruising through the wineries of Palisade and Sunday mountain-biking. Both were fantastic and we had perfect weather all weekend. A giant crew of us assembled in the desert just outside of Fruita which apparently was a popular thing to do that weekend (campground was over-flowing).
Palisade Wine Tour:
- Canyon Wind Cellars
- Colterris Winery
- Calson’s Winery
- Colorado Cellars Winery
- Peach Street Distillers
The Whole Crew (less me the photographer) right after visiting Canyon Wind Cellars (and while still sober):
Enjoying the Front Yard of Canyon Wind Cellars:
Our crew taking up the whole road (it was mostly empty with no problems with the local vehicle traffic):
Fruit Boxes along the road:
The Beautiful Grounds of the Colterris Winery:
Bikes in front of the Outhouse at the very laid-back vineyard of Hermosa Vineyards:
After visiting Hermosa vineyards we were pretty deep into our tastings and all a bit tipsy. The finally slog back down the valley to the cars (and Peach Pit Distillery) took us quite some time (at least an hour). Here is the river when we crossed it going back down to the cars.
Mountain Biking Fruita:
We all hit the sack early that night after our full-day touring the vineyards and the next morning woke-up to cool-temps and perfect weather for MTB. A crew that knew what they were doing took off and Caitlin and I decided to do Kesler’s run and circle back to camp. Well we deviated off of that plan and ended up doing Western Zippity (an additional 5-6 miles) before looping back to camp.
Caitlin bombing down the awesome Kessel Run (named after a Star War’s reference):
Way-out in the middle of nowhere on the cross-country trail “Western Zippity”:
Cassie on the upper-part of Kessel Run:
Beautiful weekend on the western slope!
Dates: October 5th thru 8th, 2012 (Friday thru Monday)
Who: Caitlin and I
Roadtrip (Link to Map of Route):
- Stop 1: Penitente Canyon, San Luis Valley, Colorado = Climbing and Camping
- Stop 2: CHACO CANYON, New Mexico = exploring ancient cultures, hiking, camping, mind-exploding
- Stop 3: San Juan Mountains, Durango, Colorado = camping, Aspen leaf watching, ass-freezing
Friday October 5th, Denver saw it’s first snowstorm of the 2012-2013 year as we woke-up to a solid 2 inches of fresh on our lawns and cars. While refreshing to see some of the white-stuff it was a clear sign of a quickly changing season and forced Caitlin and I to head-up to the mountains to experience the last of the Fall season.
Based on some really quick planning and weather watching we ended-up heading south towards the border (and into New Mexico) with several different stops with some unique experiences:
Stop #1: Penitente Canyon in the San Luis Valley, Colorado
Friday afternoon we rolled into a nearly deserted campground at Penitente allowing us to be able to camp in one of the best spots. The drive in was pretty weird with Denver being ~35 degrees when we left, thick fog on HWY 285, and then clear-blue beautiful skies (plus~20 degrees warmer) once we hit Bailey; classic Colorado. Four hours later we find ourselves preparing to do some sport climbing in one of the most beautiful canyon’s in Colorado:
The weather was perfect (~70 degrees cooling down quickly), but we were able to get a couple routes in before the sun completely left the sky.
The next morning we had an incredible hike through the canyon along a trail I have never hiked. Starting off very cold, it warmed up nicely and the aspen’s back-dropped against the canyon was incredible.
We also stumbled upon an old wagon-rut in the rock from when the early Mexican settlers would use an ox and a small wagon to haul wood out of the area to their homesteads and the size of the erosion was impressive (click for pic here).
On-wards to the next stop we happened to cross over Wolf Creek Pass which had perfect Aspen colors and is a pass that everyone must see at least once during the fall leaf-viewing season:
Stop #2: Chaco Culture National Historic Park, New Mexico
The ever-present shaking of the car, mixed with the dust and grit from driving down 21 miles of wash-boarded road was not helping lift our solemn spirits. At the turn-off to the canyon was an apparent “CAMPGROUND FULL” sign and we found ourselves in the middle of no-man’s-land, bumping down a dirt-road, trying to figure out what to do. After driving 4 hours already that day we decided that we were just going to push-on and confirm if the campground was actually full. Pulling-up to the campground host at 4:45pm on a Saturday (yes our timing wasn’t the best), our suspicions were confirmed that yes, those signs were correct, however, there was a group campsite that was open and as long as no-one reserved it in the next 15 mins we could share it with the other late-comers. The Chacoan gods presented some luck to us and we had a place to camp!!!
After claiming our tent-pad we rushed over to Pueblo Bonito to experience the sunset that was about to happen. Most people had already left the area leaving Caitlin and I to run-around and experience a powerful place under a powerful sunset. Caitlin summoning the gods over the massive 5 story building with 700+ rooms and 35 kivas, built over 1,000 years ago:
The Great Kiva at Pueblo Bonito:
Caitlin and I:
Timing was again on our side and that night we went to a incredible outdoor presentation provided by park ranger G.B. Cornucopia on the Chaco culture’s obsession with the sun, tracking time, and many of the numerous questions around the park. The complexity of this culture was beginning to be revealed to us and our jaw’s were on the floor the entire time.
6:45am and the sunrise was just starting to push color into the clear skies and the entire campground was starting to rumble to life. We rushed-up to the nearest butte to experience the morning much like the Chacoan’s would have done everyday in their lives. Caitlin got really excited! Fajada Butte (a major ceremonial spot) under the morning glow:
Our major adventure of the day was hiking to the overlook’s of Pueblo Bonito and Chetro Ketl. Viewing the sites from above provides a much needed perspective on the layout and the differences between the different sites and was by far the best views of the sites. Caitlin over Pueblo Bonito:
While on top we also visited the Pueblo Alto and New Alto sites:
Nothing is more hip then wearing Chaco’s while hiking in Chaco Canyon.
It was nearing 2pm and we rushed back over to Pueblo Bonito to have a walking tour lead by Park Ranger G.B. Cornucopia, who after 2 hours taught us more about the site and the different opinions on what it all meant then we could have ever hoped!!! Exploring the famous dark hallways of Pueblo Bonito:
We showed-up to this park with minimal knowledge of this culture and left being inspired to understand more about this unique place.
Stop #3: Lime Creek Road, Durango Colorado
It was now 5 PM on Sunday as we pulled ourselves away from Chaco canyon. With barely more then an hour of sunlight left we headed north as fast as we could to Durango. Having minimal notes on where to car-camp, we bumped up a rocky-forest service road in the pitch-black until we came to an incredible site that had 360-degree’s of star viewing right next to a pond. We quickly built a campfire, cooked dinner, and enjoyed our last night of the trip.
It got extremely cold overnight, enough to start freezing water in certain spots, but the morning sun was a nice relief as we awoke to incredible views:
Driving home over Molas Pass to Silverton, over Red Mountain Pass to Ouray (with a quick stop at Mouse’s chocolates), back through Gunnison and over Monarch and Kenosha passes, we landed back in Denver satisfied with our last-minute, but incredible trip!
Over the course of the year we did a lot of trips that were awesome but not big enough (or unique enough) to warrant a normal in-depth Trip Report. Instead here are those trips where cool photos were taken with a brief write-up. (Most of the links below go to more photos, so click around!)
Annie with Caitlin Spotting:
The next morning was beautiful. Caitlin playing in the Aspen forest:
Nov 21st: Turkey Rocks trad Climbing the Day before Thanksgiving with Rambo (link):
Just a sampling of many fine smaller trips!