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Topic: Rocky Mountain National Park Loop, Backpacking loop recommendations< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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Messiah62 Search for posts by this member.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 15 2013, 12:51 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Me and 3 friends are looking for a good 5 day back packing trip in Rocky Mountain National Park over Memorial Day weekend, May 24-30. Two of us have experience and the other two have never backpacked before. We are all in good physical condition and are ages 23-26.

So far the only loop that look like might fit the bill is the Continental Divide Loop.
http://www.trimbleoutdoors.com/ViewTrip/1519196

Will this loop be too long for the duration of our trip? Are there other similar, yet shorter loops that would be good to do?

Thanks!
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double cabin Search for posts by this member.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 15 2013, 3:32 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Why not the Comanche or Indian Peaks Wilderness? Why not any other number of places in Colorado?

RMNP
is more known for dayhiking than backpacking. Combine that with an incredibly busy extended weekend I HIGHLY suggest you think of getting at least 4 hours outside of Denver.


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Lamebeaver Search for posts by this member.
trail? I don't need no stinkin trail!
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 15 2013, 5:26 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

End of May is pretty early for the high country

http://forums.backpacker.com/cgi-bin....1132681
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 15 2013, 7:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(double cabin @ Feb. 15 2013, 3:32 pm)
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Why not the Comanche or Indian Peaks Wilderness? Why not any other number of places in Colorado?

RMNP
is more known for dayhiking than backpacking. Combine that with an incredibly busy extended weekend I HIGHLY suggest you think of getting at least 4 hours outside of Denver.

I am from Nebraska. I'm really only familiar with the Colorado Springs area and the NP. I have been to Arches and that might be a possibility. I'll look into those place you mentioned.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 16 2013, 9:58 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Wow, good catch LB. I missed the dates.

I'm a CC Grad and love South Central Colorado. The West slope of the Sangres south of Salida tends to melt out earlier than other mountain areas, and contains some of the most spectacular hiking there is.

Don't limit yourself to loops, especially that early. The most spectacular terrain is almost always an out and back. You may not crest the Sangres but you should be able to get to a decent elevation. I'd say go to the South Crestone Trailhead. If not much late winter/spring snow try to get to camp below willow Lake. I've done willow in May before, twice. One of the most spectacular places I've ever been. Then try South Crestone Lake. Even if you don't make it all the way to the lakes the lower ends of those trails are still VERY special.

Beyond that with those dates if its not too hot yet New Mexico's Santa Fe NF or Gila Wilderness might be your best bet for an extended trip.

Feel free to message me if you want to talk about options. Otherwise have a great trip.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 16 2013, 12:00 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Any good 3 day trips that a backpacker can take around Colorado Springs? Such as up Pikes Peak? We are fine with cold weather and snow.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 16 2013, 2:27 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Here's a few shots taken over several Memorial Day weekend trips to RMNP in "average" conditions.







This year "might" be the year you could get by in late May/early June though. The South Platte river basin which includes RMNP and most of the N Front Range is 30% drier than our disastrous winter of last year, and is the driest spot in Colorado at this time.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 17 2013, 10:06 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Outside of Lake George is the Ute Creek Trailhead. Look into Bison/McCurdy Mts. The Taryall Range melts out early too, beeen on top of Bison a couple of times in May.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 19 2013, 11:17 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

I go with double cabin...By far, the most spectacular early hiking in the Rockies is the west slope of the Sangres....

And for camping, I highly recomend Valley View Hot Springs, with big hot pools, a great clubhouse with kitchens for campers, and world-class sand volleyball courts...

Everybody will be naked of course, because this is Colorado's largest nudist resort. (Open to the public, Mon.-Thurs.)

Bring a towel for sitting on during the nightly sing-a-longs at the lodge, and, if you're shy walking around the camp naked, just carry a guitar like I do.
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