Tagged: 11ers

Whipple Mountain & Last Dollar Mountain
Independence Day | Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Diane hikes through a hillside of lupine as we descend the Whipple Mountain Trail.

This year for Independence Day Diane and I woke up early and drove down to the west end of the Sneffels Range near Telluride to climb a couple of mountains just off the Last Dollar Road. We started out by hiking up the Whipple Trail to the summit of Whipple Mountain (11,922) which was about 1.5 miles in length with 1,500 feet of elevation gain. It was mostly up an easy trail lined with wildflowers and then the last section from the saddle to the summit was on a faint track through a forest where the mosquitoes were pretty terrible. We enjoyed the view from the summit over toward Wilson Peak, El Diente Peak, and Lizard Head for a little bit and then hiked back down to the trailhead.

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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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