Wednesday, December 12, 2007

First Snowshoe of the Year

Okay, to start I seem to have lost control of where the pictures landed. Here's the story:

Today turned out perfect after several days of clouds and snow. I took off for Golden Gate State Park, about 13 miles NW of Denver. I was shooting for the Burro Trail and hopefully making it up to Windy Point.

This was my first trail of the year so I packed too much gear (which now includes Vicodin) and headed out. We have had alot of snow the last few days and with the temps staying below freezing, ice is everywhere. The drive up the canyon was uneventful for which I was VERY happy.

The trailhead was easy to find and totaly unused. Thus began my adventure in trail breaking. For those that have snowshoed you understand just how tiring this can be. My usual hiking pace is 3-5 mph, today was a whopping 1.6 - 2.2!! Yes, making of, or better yet, finding the trail can be quite the adventure.

My hike went well, I crossed paths with a big dog's foot prints on several occasions but never saw the dog. The snow was powder perfect though mostly on the lower elevation. I did not make it to Windy Point. The snow became scarce around 8400 ft so I wisely turned back. I made it back to the car just as the sun was setting over the mountains.

I am very excted for the snow to return to the mountains. I hope to snowshoe weekly to new exciting spots.


Camille said...

I assume you can tell the difference between a big dog footprint and a big bear or a big cat etc. etc. etc. :) Sounds like you had a good day. Me jealous.

Suzanne said...

Well, the bears should be sleeping. I was thinking maybe it was a coyote (too big) or a wolf (really rare). The dog had to be with 30 yards of me a couple of times based on how fresh the pints were. It was easy to test the freshness as the wind was filing my tracks instantly.