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Topic: Help: 3-night backpacking trip in Rockies, Need trip for solo backpacker< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 04 2013, 5:39 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I've bicycled across the park but never backpacked there.  Luckily, I've got a work excuse to go to Denver with play days September 18 - 22.  If I arrive the 18th, I can kick off the trip the morning of the 19th and have the 19th, 20th, 21st in the back country.

3 nights out, 4 days of hiking.  Also, it will just be me, so I can't shuttle back and forth.  Most of my experience (and we're talking 2 - 5 night trips max) is in the Smokies with a little bit Washington.  I have limited experience on snow and will be hiking alone, so I'm good with strenuous stuff but not technical stuff.  

Again, this will be my first trip to Colorado so I want to see it at its best.  Help me out!!  Thanks!
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 04 2013, 5:57 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

You mention "the park," which I assume means RMNP. Are you locked into BPing there, or open to other suggestions? If the latter, how far are you willing to drive from Denver?
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 04 2013, 6:03 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Thanks for responding, cweston.  I'm open to other suggestions for sure.  I think 2 hours from Denver is probably the farthest I'd want to go, unless there's something farther that I just cannot miss.
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 04 2013, 6:51 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The Indian Peaks Wilderness might be worth looking into. After Sept. 15, you don't need a permit, so you can go wherever you want.

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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 04 2013, 11:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I must admit having seen some truly spectacular pics from the Indian Peaks of late.

A little mroe time behind the wheel can be more than worth it so say the least.

Flat Tops? Colorado trail south of Monarch Pass? Eastern Sangres?

You might check out summit post dot org and see some pretty darn great pages.


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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 04 2013, 11:58 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

If you start and end at Grand Lake, you can do the loop up to the CDT (taking a day-hike to tag Hallett Peak from July Campsite).

However, it's possible that the trail in the area of Haynach is still impassable.


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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 05 2013, 1:21 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

How about the Four Pass Loop out of Aspen?
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 05 2013, 3:33 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(JustinJames @ Sep. 05 2013, 11:21 am)
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How about the Four Pass Loop out of Aspen?

Sure, it's a beautiful hike.  But, it is far more than 2 hours from Denver.

Remember the chances of snow are high in Sept, so be prepared for it.

If you are lucky, the weather will be fabulous.  Enjoy.


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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 08 2013, 11:26 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The Indian Peaks are the second most spectacular range in Colorado, (ranking just behind the Needles Range in the San Juans.)

Like the Alps, the Indian Peaks are geologically young, sharp, and jagged with 13,000 ft. peaks, glaciers, well-stocked lakes, ancient mines, and jaw-dropping views at every turn...

And you can get to them in 30 minutes from Denver, (or a 60 minute ride on a city bus...)

Yes the trailheads are crowded on weekends, (but only a tiny fraction of the hoards in RMNP,) and 99.9 percent of Indian Peaks hikers are day-trippers who disappear by three in the afternoon.

Make camping reservations at the Boulder Ranger District, 303–541-2500,  ($5.00 a night per party.)
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 09 2013, 11:50 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(highpeakdrifter @ Sep. 08 2013, 9:26 pm)
QUOTE
The Indian Peaks are the second most spectacular range in Colorado, (ranking just behind the Needles Range in the San Juans.)

Like the Alps, the Indian Peaks are geologically young, sharp, and jagged with 13,000 ft. peaks, glaciers, well-stocked lakes, ancient mines, and jaw-dropping views at every turn...

And you can get to them in 30 minutes from Denver, (or a 60 minute ride on a city bus...)

Yes the trailheads are crowded on weekends, (but only a tiny fraction of the hoards in RMNP,) and 99.9 percent of Indian Peaks hikers are day-trippers who disappear by three in the afternoon.

Make camping reservations at the Boulder Ranger District, 303–541-2500,  ($5.00 a night per party.)

HPD, I'm getting worried....

You've been copy /pasting essentially the same reply about "the Indian Peaks are like the Alps" and all for the last couple of years, though there isn't even the remotest resemblance to the Alps in the IPW, which are neither "young" or "jaw dropping".

For example, there are several thousand, well established technical rock climbs in RMNP, that draw climbers from around the globe, which attests to the sheer steepness and rock quality in RMNP .

In the IPW you don't even need to take you're shoes off to count the number of climbs. The rock quality is abysmal, the "peaks" are 99%,  frost shattered scree piles.

There are NO "glaciers" in the IPW, at least off of the "Peoples Republic of Boulder "Private Property"" watershed.Though the map might call them that, they are just static and declining snowfields.

QUOTE
"You can get to them in 30 min from Denver"


What was in that last bowl you smoked ? You're lucky to get from Denver to Boulder in 30 min, then it's another 30-45 min from Boulder to Nederland, than another 30-40 min to get to a TH. So at least a 1 1/2 hr drive, if everything in the cosmos aligns, but I'd figure on 2 hrs for a Denver to IPW TH at the least.

But you're biggest hazed, induced brain fart was to suggest that permits are required ! Did you read the OP's dates ?

After Sept. 15th you don't need a permit anywhere in the IPW, essentially the only time I'll BP there. No crowds, no permits.

The IPW will always be the poor bastard stepchild to RMNP and can't even remotely compare to the likes of the Gore's, Sangre's, Needle's/Weminuche, Aspen, etc.,etc.

It's one and only redeeming feature, and it's biggest problem, is that it's the closest Alpine wilderness to the Front Range megalopolis.


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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 12:23 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Ooh, that hurt!
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 7:09 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Well this is an interesting thread. Apparently perception is reality eh?

Pass that bowl my way BTW.
:laugh:
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 9:02 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(swimswithtrout @ Sep. 09 2013, 9:50 pm)
QUOTE
What was in that last bowl you smoked ? You're lucky to get from Denver to Boulder in 30 min, then it's another 30-45 min from Boulder to Nederland, than another 30-40 min to get to a TH. So at least a 1 1/2 hr drive, if everything in the cosmos aligns, but I'd figure on 2 hrs for a Denver to IPW TH at the least.

I agree with that time comment.

I'm 20ish minutes east of downtown Denver -- OFF rush hour -- and it took us 1 hour and 45 minutes to get to the 4th of July TH.   That was leaving my house at 5:30 am.

Starting that trip three hours later would have added at least an hour to the overall time.

There is no way one can reach IPW in 30 minutes from Denver.


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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 10:14 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

One thing to keep in mind is elevation. If you plan to go above 9k-10k you probably need to spend some time getting acclimated. Since it appears you don't have a lot of time, if you plan to go high on your hikes you should plan on camping lower than 9k -- at least for the first night.

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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 3:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

LMAO. Heeh. Heeh. Don't worry HPD, SWT has given me a well deserved education or two in these pages as well. It's a good thing.

Now get back to that organic pain medication and have a good one man.

What about the CT from Kenosha to Breck?


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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 3:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

OK, so my plan was to get in Thursday morning, drive to Aspen, spend the late afternoon and night there, then get up and start the Four Pass Loop trail.  I'd have to do that in three days and two nights.  I've seen conflicting reports of it being 24 miles and 28 miles.   Do you think that is the best use of my plan?  I would prefer a loop since I only have one car.  Is there another loop that might be better?  Is the altitude going to destroy me?
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 5:09 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

You never know until you feel it.  You'll find out on the first pass.
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 7:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(JustinJames @ Sep. 10 2013, 1:53 pm)
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OK, so my plan was to get in Thursday morning, drive to Aspen, spend the late afternoon and night there, then get up and start the Four Pass Loop trail.  I'd have to do that in three days and two nights.  I've seen conflicting reports of it being 24 miles and 28 miles.   Do you think that is the best use of my plan?  I would prefer a loop since I only have one car.  Is there another loop that might be better?  Is the altitude going to destroy me?

Don't forget to factor in the elevation gain and loss.  The miles are longer at altitude.   :;):

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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 10 2013, 9:05 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Deborah @ Sep. 10 2013, 6:47 pm)
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Don't forget to factor in the elevation gain and loss.  The miles are longer at altitude.   :;):

For sure.

Is the Four-Pass Loop doable in 3 days? Sure.

But it might be a lot to bite off for a flatlander unfamiliar with the effects of strenuous hiking at altitude.

I know this sounds patronizing, but people from other regions consistently underrate the big western ranges' capability to kick their butts. And that's especially true of the high altitude ranges.
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 11 2013, 6:51 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(swimswithtrout @ Sep. 09 2013, 11:50 pm)
QUOTE

(highpeakdrifter @ Sep. 08 2013, 9:26 pm)
QUOTE
The Indian Peaks are the second most spectacular range in Colorado, (ranking just behind the Needles Range in the San Juans.)

Like the Alps, the Indian Peaks are geologically young, sharp, and jagged with 13,000 ft. peaks, glaciers, well-stocked lakes, ancient mines, and jaw-dropping views at every turn...

And you can get to them in 30 minutes from Denver, (or a 60 minute ride on a city bus...)

Yes the trailheads are crowded on weekends, (but only a tiny fraction of the hoards in RMNP,) and 99.9 percent of Indian Peaks hikers are day-trippers who disappear by three in the afternoon.

Make camping reservations at the Boulder Ranger District, 303–541-2500,  ($5.00 a night per party.)

HPD, I'm getting worried....

You've been copy /pasting essentially the same reply about "the Indian Peaks are like the Alps" and all for the last couple of years, though there isn't even the remotest resemblance to the Alps in the IPW, which are neither "young" or "jaw dropping".

For example, there are several thousand, well established technical rock climbs in RMNP, that draw climbers from around the globe, which attests to the sheer steepness and rock quality in RMNP .

In the IPW you don't even need to take you're shoes off to count the number of climbs. The rock quality is abysmal, the "peaks" are 99%,  frost shattered scree piles.

There are NO "glaciers" in the IPW, at least off of the "Peoples Republic of Boulder "Private Property"" watershed.Though the map might call them that, they are just static and declining snowfields.

QUOTE
"You can get to them in 30 min from Denver"


What was in that last bowl you smoked ? You're lucky to get from Denver to Boulder in 30 min, then it's another 30-45 min from Boulder to Nederland, than another 30-40 min to get to a TH. So at least a 1 1/2 hr drive, if everything in the cosmos aligns, but I'd figure on 2 hrs for a Denver to IPW TH at the least.

But you're biggest hazed, induced brain fart was to suggest that permits are required ! Did you read the OP's dates ?

After Sept. 15th you don't need a permit anywhere in the IPW, essentially the only time I'll BP there. No crowds, no permits.

The IPW will always be the poor bastard stepchild to RMNP and can't even remotely compare to the likes of the Gore's, Sangre's, Needle's/Weminuche, Aspen, etc.,etc.

It's one and only redeeming feature, and it's biggest problem, is that it's the closest Alpine wilderness to the Front Range megalopolis.

Burn!

I'd have to agree with all this, and add that, having been to both the Alps and IP (in fact, I used to live in Ned), there is very little comparison/resemblance between the two. I tend to get pretty bored in the Indian Peaks, but then again, I've fully toured most of the state's great ranges. The Alps indeed have massive, technical glacier climbs, and are very hard to summit without an extremely exposed ridge traverse with class 5 moves. The Alps tower; as SWT said, the Indian Peaks are babies compared to RMNP and the like. The Alps are a world-class range, and are highly developed. The Indian Peaks, being a designated wilderness, are not developed, and hold far from world-class scenery.


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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 12 2013, 12:15 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Hey, OP, I've done the 4-pass-loop a half-dozen times, the last time was in mid-September. It took me, and my 50-year-old daughter, 72 hours from TH to TH, and it was a piece of cake, along with spectacular aspen colors all the way...

Don't let the negative norvices on this forum dissuade you, the 4-pass Loop is one of the world's bucket-list hikes, and you'll remember it forever.
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 12 2013, 9:16 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

One mans negativity is another mans reality.

We all understand that right?
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 12 2013, 11:57 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Negative people suck, and nearly everybody in the world hates them.

The world will be inherited by the bright shiny optimistic dreamers, who have created everything that is happy in all civilization from the beginning of time...
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 13 2013, 7:16 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Ultra opinionated bombastic people suck in my view.

And those who run from the reality that life is sometimes negative.

We all just have to deal with that.
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 16 2013, 7:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Thanks for the feedback everyone.  I was planning on doing the 4-pass loop staying this Friday morning.  How are conditions. Id fly into Denvrr Thursday and drive to Aspen then start the hike Friday.  Yall think I should cancel?
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trail? I don't need no stinkin trail!
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PostIcon Posted on: Sep. 16 2013, 8:32 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

Weather is fine now.   Your trip is away from the flood areas.  You shouldn't have any problems.  Have a nice trip.
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