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Topic: 3-4 day Crested Butte suggestions?, Looking for ideas on a 3-4 day trip< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 08 2013, 12:03 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Group of 3 adventurous men looking for a 3-4 day trip in the Crested Butte area.  Would like to find a base camp 6-8 miles in where we can fish nearby and then do 1-2 peaks with day trips from there.  We did Chicago basin/Elk Park loop last summer and wanted to explore the Crested Butte area, but avoid the crowds of the Maroon Bells.  Would love to get any suggestions or ideas.  Thanks!
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 08 2013, 12:52 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

This is my neck of the woods - I live in Gunnison.  Here are a couple of ideas:
1. My number one recommendation is almost always Oh-Be-Joyful valley.  Trailhead is 3 or 4 miles NW of Crested Butte.  Beautiful valley.  Lakes include Blue Lake and Peeler Lakes.  You could actually make a loop coming back down the old Gunsight Pass Road after going to those lakes.  Other side trips are Daisy Pass and Oh-Be-Joyful Pass.  Democrat Basin below the passes is one of the most beautiful camping areas I've had in Colorado.  And, there are several small peaks you can climb in the area, and some small ponds or lakes.  Not sure how the fishing is in the ponds.  But, you could head over to Blue or Peeler Lakes from a base camp there.  These would be low-mileage days, with Democrat Basin being about 8 miles in.

2. Copper Lake.  Just outside of Gothic north of CB, you take the Judd Falls trailhead and continue up that drainage to the lake, which has a couple nice campsites.  Sidetrips include East Maroon, Copper and Triangle Passes.  If you are ambitious, you could reach Conundrum Hot Springs on the oher side of Triangle Pass.  There are peaks you could climb above that pass also.

3. Twin Lakes.  From Brush Creek.  I have not been here, but they are supposed to be good.  And, just over the informal "Coffeepot Pass" is another access to Conundrum Hot Springs and the peaks on the ridge above.

There are others.  But, these are the 3 that best fit your criteria that are not too far from CB.  If you want to expand your scope, check out Ptarmigan Lake or Texas Creek in the Taylor Park area, as well as the West Elk Wilderness to the southwest.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 08 2013, 9:55 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Great feedback. Thanks so much. I would assume Oh be joyful would be less crowded than Copper lake?  Appreciate it.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 09 2013, 10:35 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

What makes you think one of the world's premiere Mt. Biking and summer recreation areas would be less crowded than the Bells?

If you want to get away from crowds one of the first things to do is to get as far from a famous resort town, paticularly ones with world class ski areas, as you can. IMO the Sangre de Cristo Range offers EXCELLENT high country lake fishing that as an overall range I would guess is unsurpassed in Colorado. Perhaps Swims with Trout could give his opinion on that because I'm honestly not a fisherman however many monsters I've seen in the Sangres that in my experience were unrivaled anywhere else in the Centennial State.

On the West side I've lauded Willow Lake as one of the most spectacular drainages I've ever been. A 170' or so waterfall drops into a cliff immured lake filled with monster trout. This is the most popular drainage on Colorado's Western Sangre slope for good reason, but during the week and not in absolute peak season it would I guess be a far less "crowded" place than anything very close to Crusty Butt at the same time. Kit Carson and Challenger peaks are climbed from Willow. Hardy climbers can go over Mt. Adams from the East and drop into Willow Creek a couple of miles below the lake. ***There are some truly AWESOME restaurants in Crestone now, IMO the most spectacular town in the State.

Beyond the Crestone Lakes most other Westside options for fishing are a bit rugged, Lamebeaver might comment on the fishing at Rito Alto Lake. I don't think S. Zapata is very good for fish but that may have changed. Pioneer Lakes are great fishing but not for beginers in the region IMO.

On the East side the options are also incredible. Lily Lake is too short for you to basecamp but fishing is awesome and peaks are stunning to say the least. I know fishing can be GREAT in Macey Lakes, Comanche Lake [lower], Venable Lakes, Brush Creek Lakes. Winchell Lakes are reputed to be "thje best" there is but VERY difficult and dangerous to get to. Get a map and start googling, you will foget CB for many reasons if you research the Sangres.

I understand the appeal of Crusty Butt, but for what you want you REALLY need to reconsider it as a backpack/fishing destination given what are IMO superior choices. If you have wives or others that want to stay in Crusty Butt the Sangres are just a spectacular drive away.

Yeah, I love the Sangres and am biased, but if you want fishing and spectacular peaks I honestly can't think of a better option in Colorado. Swims with Trout however just might have something to say about that and when it comes to fishing he's the guy I'd rely on here.

Coming from Minnesota SWT might have some great Northern Colorado options for you. Peaks in the Winds are generally more difficult but require more time than you have in most opinions.

Wherever you go have a wonderful trip.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 09 2013, 11:07 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

If it's just the guys and you want to have a fantastic trip in Colorado somewhere other than the Needles where you went last year, I suggest the Sangres or the Gore Range.

(You might want to see my TR from a recent Gore Range adventure here.)

As DC says, if you have non-BPers coming along, that could change the equation, although the Gore range is very close to I-70, Vail, Breckinridge, etc.

I'm not a fisherman, so I don't know about that. But every time I go to the Sangres I see fishermen in the backcountry, so the fish must be there. I'd give Macy Lakes in the eastern Sangres a good look: great base camp, not as crowded as some Sangres lakes, fantastic class 2 climb of Colony Baldy with views of the Crestone Peaks.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 09 2013, 12:05 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Hey guys!  The OP asked about the Crested Butte area.  Not the Sangres or Gore Range.  CW, I know you just got back from an excellent trip in the Gore Range.  But, Red didn't ask about that.  And, DC, why do you ALWAYS have to put in  your plug for the Sangres?  They are good, too.  But, many times when you mention them, they are outside of the parameters set by the original post.  So, get OFF it unless someone asks about it, or asks a question general enough that the Sangres would be within bounds of what was asked.

Back to your question, Red.  Yes, due to its proximity to Aspen on the other side, you will have more people at Copper Lake than in Oh-Be-Joyful.  And, you'll see hardly anyone in the Brush Creek area.  Contrary to what Double Cabin says, you will not see mountain bikers in the Copper Lake area or Oh-Be-Joyful.  Both are in designated wilderness areas.  I've been at Copper Lake when 2 groups have been camped there (7 people).  I've also been there and had the lake to myself.  Mid-week is better than weekend.  And, the Oh-Be-Joyful area is large enough that most of the time you can find solitude if you want.  Democrat Basin is not small.  And, both times I was in to the lakes I had Blue Lake and both Peeler Lakes to myself.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 09 2013, 12:12 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Point taken.

But the OP did specifically mention avoiding crowds.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 09 2013, 12:41 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(cweston @ Jul. 09 2013, 10:12 am)
QUOTE
Point taken.

But the OP did specifically mention avoiding crowds.

I know.  But, he also specifically asked about the Crested Butte area, not trailheads 3 hours away or more, or Colorado in general.  And, the trails I suggested are NOT crowded, unlike the nearby Maroon Bells area.  You had a great trip, and I LOVED your pictures.  But, DC does this on a regular basis.  Someone will ask about Rocky Mountain National Park or the Indian Peaks, and he'll go ahead with his Sangres sermon.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 10 2013, 2:25 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'd recommend the 4-Pass Loop and Conundrum Hot Springs, both easily accessible from Crested Butte...

Oh-Be-Joyful sucks...It's basically just a long drag-ass hike to nowhere...

Whereas, at Conundrum Hot Springs, you're likely to encounter hot, naked, ready-to-party women...

Bring cold Fetzer...You'll be the Kings of the Springs.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 10 2013, 8:04 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Yeah, I know about DC's Sangre schtick. It seems fairly harmless to me. It's kindof like when you do internet searches with multiple keywords--sometimes it's helpful to see some results with one of the keywords dropped.

I know if I made a post like that about a region I'm not completely familiar with, I wouldn't mind getting other suggestions.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 10 2013, 11:57 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

BF,

Wow, lighten up man. It's a forum. They want fishing and solitude,  and think Crested Butte would be less crowded than the Bells. That's a misperception and you know it. The Sangres would of course be a SHORTER drive if Crusty Butt doesn't need to be in the equation.

Lots of people suggest alternative destinations here all the time. I'm trying to give this poster information few consider because the Sangres don't have a World Class Ski Resort with the attendant masses .Their ultimate objective, fishing and Solitude is not something they're REALLY going to find [IMO] in the place they focused in on based on the resort/town, not the area backcountry.

Since I've been sincerely thanked and sometimes reciprocated with gifts for my Sangre suggestions I'm not going to buy your exclusive diatribe and you know that if you don't like my posts you can ignore them. As to sermons if that's how the poster wants to take it that is their prerogative. If the poster REALLY wants to catch big fish and lots of them with fewer people around and some great peaks then they'll appreciate and consider my post.

So absolutely no point taken here whatsoever.

Peace,

John


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 10 2013, 4:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(double cabin @ Jul. 10 2013, 9:57 am)
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They want fishing and solitude,  and think Crested Butte would be less crowded than the Bells. That's a misperception and you know it.

I'm not going to buy your exclusive diatribe and you know that if you don't like my posts you can ignore them.

Have you been up Oh-Be-Joyful?  Gorgeous area and, yes, without the crowds of the Maroon Bells area most of the time.

Exclusive?  I am simply going by what he posted in the first place.  There ARE areas near Crested Butte that are scenic and not crowded if you get out of town.  It is you that needs to ignore my posts, as I gave the information first.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 10 2013, 5:25 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

"I know you are but what am I?" LMAO.

Dude,

Really?

Op if youa re going to Oh be Joyful I seem to remember it received some pretty heavy stock use.

Crested Butte is a wonderful area but because of just over two dozen or so miles of Mt. Biking Trails the biking community in Colorado has essentially held up the designation of more than 2 million acres of Wilderness, "Colorado Gems."

OP, do enjoy yourself wherever you go. My apologies for my part in the drama.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 13 2013, 10:55 am Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

Oh Be Joyful, Daisy Pass and Democrat Basin were awesome last year.  No stock, no crowds, no bikes.
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