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Hike in the Snowy Mountains

We spent our time after Christmas in Colorado.  It was exciting for us to spend time with our kids in Colorado Springs.

Hike 1 CS 2018 Glen Winter

At the trailhead to Mr. Cutler near Colorado Springs. Ready for a cold hike!

We did get out for a few hikes and planned more, but the weather became too cold to hike for more than a few minutes in the mountains. The next time we visit in the winter, we will plan on snowshoeing or skiing or both.

Hike 1 CS Springs 2018 Winter--Ice on path

One of the early lessons we learned was that an investment in micro spikes makes a big difference on icy trails. We did not have any on this hike, but the kids did. After hiking 2 ½ miles up over 700 feet in snowy 16-degree weather, we decided we should get some as well. We did enjoy our first hike in the mountains and the trail, although with ice patches, was manageable.

Hike 1 CS 2018 GSPBK on the way to the top

Getting near the top of Cutler with our hiking group. Kids have the spikes and we do not!

Our elevation started at 6500 feet above sea level, much higher than normal for us and went up from there to the top of Mt. Cutler (over 7,200feet). And yes, it was cold!

Our second hike was colder than the first from the start as we climbed up Raspberry Mountain.

Hike 2 CS 2018 Getting ready to go

All bundled up and getting ready to go for a hike–just over the bridge and up the mountain.

We started the hike at 9,500 feet above sea level and went for over 5 miles reaching the peak at over 10,500 feet above sea level.

The hike started at 30 degrees and grew colder; the hike ended over three hours later at 9 degrees as the sun was setting.

Hike 2 CS 2018 Getting back near sunset

I was happy to be the owner of new micro spikes, as my footing was secure on the assent and decent. Hike 2 CS 2018 Glen likes the micro spikes

We chose to get this hike in early in the visit before the anticipated cold front came into the mountains; it worked. Although at times our warm clothes were sometimes too warm, we were better off with the many layers we had on the hike.Hike 2 CS 2018 GK on the hike

It was good that we went when we did, as we spend a few days indoors playing cards and enjoying our new years celebration.

CS Bridge hand--what would you bid

Bridge hand–what would you bid?

Other highlights:

Enjoy what nature has to offer—make snow angels Hike 2 CS 2018 Snow angels

Trip by the numbers:  We hiked over 8 miles and had an elevation gain of almost 2,000 feet. Not too bad for a couple who live at almost 900 feet above sea level visiting Colorado.

Hike 2 CS 2018 View of Pikes peak from the trail

No bike rides in the cold and snow.

Bike End No Ride

 

 

 

Colorado Springs

We went to Colorado Springs to visit with our kids who recently moved into the area. The views from their house are amazing. I can see why they enjoy living out in this area. We spent more time with the kids and some of the boxes than we did sightseeing.

One of our highlights was hiking at The Garden of the Gods Park in Colorado Springs. The free park is awe inspiring. I was in the park about 8 years ago and it is a must visit when you are in the area.

We enjoyed hiking along the Ute trail in the mountain biking area. The magnificent red rocks are jutting out of the ground are quite the contrast with the rest of the mountains in the area and the green vegetation along the trails.

The beauty in this area is so different than our home state. It was wonderful to see. After our hike on the Ute trail we hiked around the main area. We followed the good tenants for getting acclimated to altitude, not over doing it on the first day or two, limiting alcohol and drinking plenty of water.CS GG KGB

Our other big hiking adventure was in North Cheyenne Cañon Park. If you go in the summer, it is probably best to avoid Saturday or Sunday visits as it was crowded when we went. We had to park away from the main parking area, which was fine for us as we enjoyed hiking up to catch the visitor’s center and the starting point for the trail up to Helen Hunt Falls.

Colorado 7 bridges hike to trail head

The hike up was beautiful.

The visitor’s center was fun with a map where hikers noteColorado 7 bridges hike to trail head--Hellen Hunt falls where hikers come fromd where they were from.

This is another park owned by the city of Colorado Springs.

Colorado 7 bridges hike to trail head--First trail up 6 G-K-S-B view from top of silver cascade

 

From Helen Hunt Falls we continued our day by hiking up the Seven Bridges Trail (although we only made it over 3 of the bridges). We found ourselves in the middle of an ultra-marathon (they were running 50 miles). Our kids had read a comment online about this trail that you should dance over each one of the bridges and do a different dance for each. That was fun and I am not posting the videos! We also managed some non-technical boulder climbing after bridge #3.

Other highlights:

We went bouldering. The kids have been enjoying a local past time, climbing rocks. It is fun to do so indoors in a controlled environment and even outside. Our daughter and daughter-in law enjoyed the outdoor rock climbing as well.

We will be back before too long and have more to share. We did hike over 10 miles and I rode a bike one day 5 miles in the neighborhood. We also recycled boxes and helped out around the new place in Colorado.

I managed one bike ride in the neighborhood. I had not ridden in an area with wild cactus plants growing before this ride.

Colorado mountain bike 2018 cati

View from the path near the kids house

I only managed 5 miles, but it was a fun 5 miles after I put the bike together and got it in working order.

We will be back soon!

Garden of the Gods G-K

Walking in the Garden of the Gods

Bike

Bike from my ride. This is in the driveway. What a view!