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Tag: uncompahgre valley

The Black Canyon

Saturday, October 17, 2015

It’s been a few years since I had been to many of the main overlooks along the South Rim in the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and I thought it was time to finally get back for another visit. Diane and I left home early enough on Saturday morning so that we were able to make it to the Cedar Point overlook about a half hour before the sun came up. I spent that time photographing The Painted Wall and the deep canyon below us until shortly after the sunrise. Once the sun was up we drove the rest of the way to the end of the road and hiked out to Warner Point since I had never been out there before. Clouds started rolling in from the west as we hiked back to the trailhead as a storm front moved into the area that was supposed to bring us some rain for the next couple of days. After our hike, we drove back out of the park and stopped at a couple of the other viewpoints along the way. Before leaving we drove down the East Portal Road to the Crystal Dam on the Gunnison River and were pleasantly surprised to find a couple nice patches of fall colors along the way. It’s always nice to spend a few hours along the rim of The Black Canyon.

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Twin Peaks

Saturday, June 13, 2015

This morning I drove down to Ouray so I could try and climb my first mountain summit of the year. After this weekend I’m going to be pretty busy for the rest of June and I didn’t want to wait until July to get into the mountains for the first time this year. Since I’m not in the best shape right now and the weather forecast was predicting that storms would move into the area late in the morning, I decided to hike to the top of Twin Peaks (10,798 feet), a famous Ouray landmark. There are currently two trails that will get you to the summit- a new trail and an old trail. The reason for this is because in the early 1980’s the Old Twin Peaks Trail was washed out by a major storm. To replace the old trail, a new connector from the Oak Creek Trail was built to bypass the washed out section. This trail is now known as the New Twin Peaks Trail. In 2004 the Ouray Trails Group reconstructed the old trail which now consists of over 300 steps and 1,300 feet of elevation gain within 1.2 miles. Apparently, the Forest Service won’t officially sanction the reconstructed trail because they consider it too steep, but it is back on the maps.

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