Sunday, August 14, 2011

Mt. Evans

On Saturday, Jason, Zach (our friend who also moved here from VA right before we did), and I went for a hike on one of the famous "fourteeners" in the Rocky Mountains.  There are 54 mountain peeks above 14,000 elevation and they are a very popular place to visit on the weekends.  Jason and Zach have now completed eight of the 54, including the one they did with me yesterday.

The boys chose the HARDEST hike possible! (Okay, that's a lie, it was only a difficulty class 2 out of 5.)  But it was absolutely beautiful and once I have feeling in my feet again I'm sure I will think it was worth it.  The hike ending up being 11 miles round trip, with a total of about 3,300 feet elevation gain--in other words, straight up.

We began by trudging through willow bushes and deep mud in ice cold water (there was still frost on the ground and frozen puddles around us).  Then we basically climbed on big rocks and boulders to the top of the gully, passed through some grassy areas at the top, and then summited Mt. Evans by climbing over another, more challenging mass of boulders.  As you can imagine, going down was as hard as going up because we were constantly falling and scraping ourselves up!  That, in combination with the effects of the altitude changing at a dramatic rate made for a long hike, both ways!

All in all though, it was a memorable trip and Zach took some awesome pictures -- all of which are posted below. 

Jason and I heading out of one patch of willows and into the next.  Our legs are totally scratched up!

My shoe after being completely submerged in mud pits!  

 In the middle of this picture it looks like a rock slide--and that is literally what we hiked up!

Along the way we saw some columbine, which is the Colorado state flower.

 Mirror lakes at the foothills of the mountains.

The view from probably half way up the gully.

Rock cliffs.

 A darling pika!

 View of Sawtooth Mountain  and Mt. Bierstadt (one of the 14ers).

 Another view of Sawtooth (right) and Mt. Bierstadt (left). 

 At the summit of Mt. Evans there is an observatory and people can drive to the last part of the hike on the highest paved road in North America.

 The observatory (we were too exhausted to explore this area).

 Jason and I at the summit (it was freezing!)

 Jason and Zach at the summit.

A big thanks to Zach for the awesome pix!


  1. Stunning! I can totally see why you moved out there--what incredible scenery! Beautiful photos, too--Zach has a great eye!!! Loved the shoe pic--did the mud suck it right off your foot? Way to go you three!!!