Category: Highpointing

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Catching the sunset over Monument Canyon from Pothole Point.

For most of the day we had an overcast sky with the occasional light rain shower here in the Grand Valley, but as it got later in the afternoon the clouds started to break up a bit and the chances of a nice sunset were looking good. I decided to head out with my camera and take a drive through the Colorado National Monument on Rim Rock Drive so I could take a few photos from the overlooks until sunset. The late afternoon light breaking through the clouds turned out to be pretty nice at times. When I reached the Book Cliffs View near the Visitor’s Center and campground I decided to finally climb to the summit of Saddlehorn (5,770) nearby. It was a short and easy climb, but it’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time and am happy that I can finally cross it off my list. Here are a few photos from my evening along Rim Rock Drive.

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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

After work on Wednesday, Diane and I drove up onto the Grand Mesa for an evening hike on the Crag Crest Trail. We started from the West Trailhead and hiked up to the highest point on the Crag Crest ridge (11,189), which is also the second highest point in Mesa County (after Leon Peak) and about 4 miles from the trailhead. It had rained earlier in the afternoon and much of the trail was wet and muddy, plus the mosquitoes were out in force when we started. The mosquitoes were so bad at the beginning of the trail that we couldn’t stop moving or else we would be swarmed by them! Thankfully, they seemed to disappear once we reached the higher portion of the ridge and we also didn’t have any issues with mosquitoes on the hike back down. The sky was pretty cloudy and overcast for much of the hike, but when we reached the summit we were treated to a little blue sky and sunlight. From the top we were able to see the tops of the West Elks and even the distant San Juan Mountains. There was even a tiny rainbow over the Beckwith Peaks in the distance for a few minutes. Thankfully, we never saw any lightning or heard any thunder during the entire hike. We made it back to my Jeep at the trailhead shortly after sunset and we never had to use our headlamps. We were the only ones on the trail this evening and it was a nice way to spend a few hours after work.

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Mesa County High Point
Thursday, September 4, 2014

Since I had the day off from work I decided to go on a short hike close to home today. While I doubt I’ll ever try to complete all the county high points in Colorado, I thought it might be nice to at least climb the highest peak in Mesa County where I reside (and maybe a few of the surrounding counties, eventually). After a little research I found that Leon Peak on the Grand Mesa is the highest point in Mesa County at 11,236 feet and that it was a pretty short hike without too much elevation gain from a nearby campground. It would be a perfect hike to complete in a couple of hours this morning.

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