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Showing posts from March, 2018

BACKPACK COPPER CREEK TO CONUNDRUM HOT SPRINGS

With 2x the views, this challenging alternate trail to Conundrum Hot Springs packs a punch.
Please Note: As of this year, Conundrum Springs camping requires an overnight permit. You must get a permit in order to camp at the springs. Below are details on how to tackle the hike. To read my story of how I nearly died in Maroon Bells, click here. 
If you're looking for an incredibly challenging hike, Copper Creek to Triangle Pass to Conundrum Springs is the hike for you! When you plug in "Conundrum Springs" into your GPS it will give you two options - Aspen or Crested Butte. If you're looking for the 16-18 mile trip, go to Aspen. If you're looking to pack on closer to 22.5 miles, start from Gothic/Crested Butte. This trip is much more enjoyable broken up - a one-night trip is honestly not worth it unless you're a fast, avid hiker. This is important - people have died attempting this trail assuming it was the 16 mile trip. The additional 4-6 miles may not sound lik…

FIND HIDDEN SIERRA POINT in YOSEMITE

Find the hidden trail to Sierra Point - named one of John Muir's favorite trails, this spot has near 360 views of waterfalls.

The unmaintained trail is initially hard to find if you’re not familiar with its location. Here are the instructions: From Happy Isle, start on the JMT trail heading towards Vernal Falls. Shortly after passing a sign indicating the start of the John Muir Trail, you'll come to another sign on the left side that says "Rock Piles." If you go straight up through the rocks and stay to the right side of the large talus slide you'll easily find the well worn trail. Once you’ve found the trail, essentially just go UP. The trail is fairly easy to follow, though very steep. This is definitely not a trail to tackle in any cold/icy seasons. You will probably fight off mosquitos the whole way up, but you’ll find the views to be absolutely worth it. If you start to have trouble keeping the trail in sight, remember that it is essentially going up and to th…

LOSE YOUR BREATH AT SAPPHIRE POINT

With amazing views of Dillon Lake Reservoir, this is a great spot to stretch your legs and snap some amazing photos. The wildlife is also particularly friendly! Sapphire Point Overlook Trail is an often forgotten hidden gem in the Colorado front range. Just about 15 minutes from the highway, you can find the best view in town.  The trail is very short and takes you through some gorgeous and pockets of beautiful views of the lake. Depending on where you start, you may reach the point sooner rather than later. If you begin to the left, where the bathroom is, you'll walk just a minute or two before you arrive at the official Sapphire Point Overlook spot. The birds here are especially friendly and can easily be photographed. Some people bring wild seed to encourage the birds, but it's always best practice to leave them alone and leave no trace.  The view from the overlook is great, you can climb the boulders (carefully) to get better vantage points as well as more privacy. The se…

A PREVIOUS ENGAGEMENT

As the year changed to 2018, I could feel my body start to remember the sand in my shoes and the dirt in my hair. I swear I felt my muscles tighten in anticipation of the adventures that wait. Here's hella hoping 2018 is going to be an incredible year - it certainly started off pretty great. Headed for Goblin Valley - When I began doing all this wild stuff, I started making lists of all the things within 8 hours of Denver that I wanted to see. Camping trips, overlooks, backpacking trips, dog parks, geographical features - you name it and I was interested. One of the major things that always stood out to me was a short backpacking trip in Utah on the Diamond Fork Hot Spring trail. During the winter the road is closed, which adds another 10 miles to your trip, which means the springs are left to be enjoyed by the few, the brave and the athletically inclined. Not having the chance to do this last year, I made it the #1 priority of 2018. Funny how priorities change. Drew and I packed…

PORTLAND

Last week Miranda and I decided to test out the whole non-rev thing for the first time. We debated on a few different places, but our criteria were basic: somewhere cooler, somewhere COOLer, and not already overbooked. After looking at some options, we decided that Portland would be a great 24/hr stop. And then they legalized marijuana! You wouldn’t think this would affect anything, but our flight went from being 3/4 booked to overbooked essentially overnight. When a flight is overbooked and you’re flying non-rev (non-revenue) you quickly get a pretty dismal look at the whole situation. But luckily, if you don’t make it on the first flight you’re rolled over to the next one so we figured, “Worst case scenario, we have to wait.” Fast forward to the day of, Friday at approx. 3:00 p.m. Miranda rushes home after work where I am already waiting, by the time we get to the airport it’s 4:20, our flight boards at 4:35. The guest agent tells us, “There’s no way I can get you on now. You’re t…

RED OR GREEN

Chili, I mean. And if you ever decide on visiting New Mexico, it might be a good question to ask yourself… Yesterday Lauren, Gabe, and I took a day trip out to Roswell, NM on a whim — a whim that we created on the mention of flying out to uncharted territories for lunch! Ah, the life of a jet setter. :~) After a few days of discussing and planning, we saved the date for a Tuesday morning. We would depart from the DFW International Airport early in the morning, return to it no later than seven in the evening and essentially conquer all there was to see in Roswell in five hours! All talks of travel as the days grew closer succeeded in stirring up lots of excitement from everyone. But, why Roswell? When I was a kid, I discovered a passion for aliens inside of the movie E.T. (Ever seen that one?) I continued to spend time watching other alien-films, reading about extraterrestrials, and entertaining ideas that involved conversing with life from other parts of our galaxy. I fantasized about…

A HAPPY FALL

After visiting Moab in January of 2017, I've been dreaming about making it all the way west and visiting Zion National Park. The incredible weeping canyons and red dirt were calling my name from miles away. Mildly depressed around the holidays, I did what I always do, called Kimberly Crist to see where she would be spending Thanksgiving. While most were planning their holiday trips back home, we started planning our western Utah adventure. With other friends in tow, we would set out on Thursday evening to arrive at our Hipcamp location just south of Zion in Hilldale, UT. To say it wasn't an incredibly surreal experience pulling into the small town would be a downright lie. It's a very unique community surrounded by tall walls of red rock, no paved roads. We continued on for a while then began driving upwards to Zion Glamping Adventures. Now, glamping is not normally the way we roll but Kim and Keith were checking out the spot as part of a Hipcamp field scout gig. I could…

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