November 24, 2021
The Nā Pali Coast of Kauai
You may not know it, but you’re probably quite familiar with Kauai’s Nā Pali Coast. Jurassic Park ostensibly takes place on an island near Costa Rica. But the original film sourced its lush, tropical landscapes from Kauai. And the iconic helicopter shots bookending the movie’s main events prominently feature this stunning, rugged coastline.
Continue reading “Hanakapi’ai Falls via the Kalalau Trail”
October 10, 2021
Sunrise on Loveland Pass
With temperatures dropping and snowguns firing, my 2021 hiking season would soon draw to a close. Unfortunately, I did not have the luxury of letting my legs and lungs atrophy into ‘winter mode’. On the horizon was a family trip to Hawaii where I hoped to summit Mauna Kea. And so, on an ephemeral October Sunday, I found myself driving up to Loveland Pass.
Continue reading “Cupid Peak (and almost Grizzly) from Loveland Pass”
September 4, 2021
By early September my 2021 Colorado fourteener season was drawing to a close. That said, I needed a low-drama, high-vertical summit to keep me in shape for an upcoming technical ascent. Luckily the Sawatch Range contains peaks like this in abundance. After scouting some maps and websites I settled in on Mount Antero.
Continue reading “Mount Antero (via West Slopes)”
August 27, 2021
The Sahara amidst the Rockies
The great state of Colorado spans 10,000′ in elevation and over 450 miles in extent. Its geography and climate span an equally impressive range. A single day’s drive can take you from the high eastern plains to red rock desert, with the spine of the Rockies in between.
Continue reading “High Dune (Great Sand Dunes NP)”
August 27, 2021
Mesa Verde National Park features elaborate cliff dwellings and myriad archeological sites. The structures, excavations, and artifacts span over a thousand years of ancestral Puebloan history. The park divides into two large sub-mesas. Chapin Mesa hosts crowd favorites like Cliff Palace and Square Tower House. But the quieter Wetherill Mesa features its own set of large cliff dwellings, like Mug House, Step House, and Long House.
Continue reading “Long House (Mesa Verde NP)”
August 27, 2021
Thousands of years of history
Mesa Verde National Park features a unique blend of stunning scenery and over a thousand years of archeological treasures. Ancestral Puebloan people built elaborate cliff dwellings on this high cuesta just beyond the Rocky Mountains.
Continue reading “Petroglyph Point Trail (Mesa Verde NP)”
August 26, 2021
Views for Days
Colorado boasts an impressive roster of four national parks. Everyone knows Rocky Mountain National Park. It ranks among the most popular in the country, with roughly 4.4 million visitors in 2021 alone. But way over in the southwest corner of the state lies Mesa Verde National Park. Mesa Verde ranks as Colorado’s least-visited, but arguably one of the nation’s most unique.
Continue reading “Mesa Verde National Park”
August 24, 2021
Journey to the Center of the San Juans
My Sneffels adventure came towards the end of my first year bagging fourteener peaks in Colorado. That was no accident! Sneffels sits, tucked away in the San Juan mountains of Southwestern Colorado. This large, rugged range lies many hours from major metros like Denver. Some of the trickiest fourteeners reside in the San Juans.
Continue reading “Mount Sneffels via the South Slopes”
August 23, 2021
Hiking Vail, Gondola to Gondola
Most folks know Vail primarily as a skiing and winter destination. And few would argue that this storied resort truly shines brightest when dressed in powder. But the “mothership” of America’s largest skiing company offers myriad recreational opportunities year round.
Continue reading “Hiking Vail (Northeast Rim / Ridge Trails)”
August 14, 2021
Come on down to South Park
I arrived the night before in the small town of Alma, Colorado. Alma claims to be the highest incorporated town in the United States. Indisputably, at roughly 10,500′ Alma has the highest altitude post office in the US. I slept that night at the Treeline Hostel, which bills itself as “the highest elevation accommodation in North America” … see a pattern here?
Continue reading “The DeCaLiBron”