Sunday, September 30, 2018

Uraling to Montezuma and Loveland Pass


Another clear and sunny sky with brisk Sunrise temperatures but while the sun appearing proved to be a wash, I did catch its light shining on the nearby peaks and making a line of Aspen trees on ridge glow.

 Ten Mile Peak on the left and Peak 1 on the right.

 Buffalo Mountain to the left and Red Peak on the right.

 The Glowing Aspen

Times like the above I wish I had a larger than 200 mm telephoto lens with me!

I rode off towards the small town of Montezuma, to explore the road which leads south of it and see what's there.

What's there is a narrow road, very rock strewn and rough but still very much Uralable.  It's also apparently a favorite of locals with their ATVs, side by sides, dirt bikes, mountain bikes, or just hikers. 

What I thought would be a solitary ride felt at times to be like grand central station!

So, I didn't go much further than where it junctions with FR5, then I turned back towards Montezuma and back to Keystone.

 Montezuma Road

Once I got back to Keystone, I got on US6 heading east towards Loveland Pass to see what kind of Fall Colors I could find this late in the season.

Here's some views of the mountain peaks visible from US6 as it traverses Loveland Pass.

 This is the closest point I rode towards the pass summit,
I could see it was crawling with cagers so elected not to 
go all the way to the summit this time.

 The mountains, majestic though they are, are not as
pretty to me, without a thick layer of white snow...

 A view of some of the 10 peaks and a portion of
the Keystone Ski Resort's ski runs.

Following pics of Fall Colors were taken as I descended down US6 back towards Keystone.  There really wasn't much in the way of Fall Colors as in other areas, but there were some spots:

Back in Keystone, I saw a pick up truck going up a hillside road which looked interesting.  The sign said it was the way to the local dump and a public firing range.  Interesting.

So I doubled back and got up to the top of the hillside, found the dump, skipped the dump and turned back to pose Scarlett along the edge of the cliff side.

 That's Buffalo Mountain and Red Peak in the background.

 from left to right:
Crystal Peak, Copper Mtn, Pacific Peak, Quandary and
Atlantic Peaks

left to right:
Peak 4,3, TenMile, and Peak 1

No clouds to speak of for tonight's sunset so no pics either.  I'll be packing up and going home tomorrow.  

Hope you enjoyed the last few postings and their Fall Colors.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Uraling to Shrine Pass, Fall Colors on Officers Gulch and a Sunset

Pretty full day of riding and hiking for Fall Colors.

Martha left mid-morning to join "the coven" as they met to peruse the wares available at the outlet stores in Silverthorne.

I rode out shortly after 10AM, with temperatures in the low 40s and sunny skies.  It would climb into the high 60s, low 70s by the end of the riding.  Quite warm and mild with some wind.

First I rode the I-70 Super Slab about 15 miles to exit 190, which leads you to Shrine Pass Road.  Not much in terms of Fall Colors along this road however, but still some nice mountain peak views, even on a hazy day like today.

I stopped at the Mount of the Holy Cross Overlook first to get a picture of that worthy peak:

 Taken at max capability of the 200mm Telephoto, and
then heavily post-processed to wash out the haze and bring
out the details.  Can you see how the cuts in the rock form
a cross, especially when filled with snow in Winter?

Historical Image

I then rode Scarlett a short distance past the summit of Shrine Pass where there's a trailhead and a small parking lot.  We rode till a certain spot where I like to pose the rigs when I am on this road.  

 That far away peak is Mount of the Holy Cross

I chose to not ride all the way to the other end of Shrine Pass Road which ends in the small town of Redcliff.  Instead I turned back to the summit parking lot area and posed Scarlett with the peaks behind her.

 The peak on the left is Crystal Peak and Pacific Peak
on the right, the one in the middle didn't have a 
name according to the Peakfinder app.

I returned to exit 190, near Vail Pass, and elected to turn east on I-70 for a few miles till I got to the Officers Gulch exit.  There was lots of Fall Color to be seen from the highway and I was curious to explore this area.

Turns out, it's been closed to motorized traffic by the Forest Services for many years now.  What used to be some nice camping sites are no more, but it's still open to foot traffic so it was time to do a little hiking for Fall Colors.

 Walked all the way to the fence at the western boundary

It was late afternoon by now, so I headed on back to the campsite to rest for a bit and wait for the sunset.  No need to ride anywhere, it seems that Uma, the URRV, and Scarlett where already in the right spot for tonight's sunset:

 The colors above Peak 1 and 2 were pretty good

Temperatures dropped fast as the sun faded from the skies, a pretty good day for pictures and riding.  The thermometer outside says its 59 degrees outside, feels much cooler!  Time to turn on the catalytic propane heater.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Uraling and camping near Dillon Reservoir

Martha is attending a "get together" by what I lovingly refer to as the "coven".  The place they're gathering at is in Vail and she convinced me to head up on Thursday of this week to get in some camping near Dillon, CO

Dry camping in the Prospector Campground run by the National Forest Service till Monday.

Thursday evening, I ran up Swan Mountain Road about a mile from the campground and found this nice spot for sunset pictures with some of the Ten Peaks in the background.

Near the Sapphire Point Overlook parking lot.

 The tallest peak is Peak 1, the remaining nine go off
to the left in the picture above.

Friday, after work, found a nice grouping of Aspen in full Fall Color mode, so yes, more Fall Color pictures ahead.  These trees were located close to the hospital in Frisco where I was taken after my motorcycle accident back in 2008.

 I like the red leaves the best.

 This time, I remembered to look up, while wandering
among the Aspen

 The view from a bike path near the hospital in Frisco

I rode around Dillon Lake/Reservoir, crossing over the dam and posing Scarlett at the usual spot on Swan Mountain Road:

Before returning to the campsite, I did a short but steep hike up a hillside next to the campground area.  Found a flat rocky cliff area that overlooked the campground where I'm staying:

Martha joined me Friday evening, we went out to dinner in Dillon and relaxed the evening away.