Friday, May 11, 2018

Spring has sprung

Good hikes on Monday and Wednesday.  We enjoyed the company of some
visitors and new folks.  

Next Monday at 9 a.m. and Wednesday at 9 a.m. we'll do it again, somewhere else.  Join us at the visitor center in South Fork.

 —Wayne and Doug

Sunday, May 6, 2018

9 am Hike

Monday morning hike starts at 9 a.m. at Visitor Center
Wednesday morning hike starts at 9 a.m. at Visitor Center

Both will be wonderful.
Doug and Wayne

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

ATV ride 5-1-18

Harry led us up FSR345 to the Shaw Mesa turnoff, parked there and went down to FSR342 and 342A, clearing the road as we went along.  We took a side trip to check out the old adobe house along Shaw creek; it has deteriorated to the point it is hard to find.  I recall 20 years ago when all 4 walls were visible and the front door frame.  Nature reclaims its own pretty quickly.

Look for an email later this week to learn if there will be another ride Friday.........



We chose to hike around the Boulder Field area in an effort to avoid as much wind as possible, but it was still a very windy hike.  We continued on South of the BF and ended up going up (almost) to the top of a memorable hill.  A few folks made it to the top but most of us chose a lower altitude..........

The Oregon Grape is one of the few early blossoms showing up and I read on WebMD that it is used for psoriasis treatment: I don't know it you rub it on, eat it or just how it is used.

There were 17 of us today and all returned safely to the Visitor Center.


Hope to see all of you again and bring a friend..........


Aqua Ramon Hike Photos

Doug led us up the Agua Ramon road,starting about 1/2 mile above the village.  We hiked on bare ground for a ways then in the car tracks as far as the microwave tower, then it was in undisturbed (except for animal tracks) as far as the cattle guard where 3 of us headed back to the truck.  Doug and Mike continued on up the road..............

Maybe next Monday there will be enough known snow do some shoeing.


Sunday, December 3, 2017

Pronghorn II

Ten hearty souls faced strong winds on an otherwise beautiful hike on the "other" loop of the Pronghorn trails south of Del Norte.  

We'll walk again tomorrow (WED. at 10 a.m.).  The weather may allow us to get to the top of our own mountain in our back yard.  That's a fairly tough but short hike.
(if the weather changes drastically, we'll have a bailout ready. The forecasts have been rather sketchy, but most say Wednesday will be "improving", whatever that means.)

Up the pronghorn

Rocks and Trees


Pronghorn trail

going down

Big Buck waiting at home after the hike

Fort from early 2017

Here's one thing that we saw today.  Barbara remembered seeing it last year.  This didn't take long, but it is another of the curiosities and beauties of our "town mountain."  I have taken several solo hikes this summer up the lower part of Sentinel Mountain; each is a unique experience.   As you know there are very steep places, Spring creeks, diverse flowers through the spring and summer,  about 8 species of  trees, open spaces, nice views all around the mountain, many kinds of birds,
and jumbles of rocks.  This former volcanic formation is a local "secret" known to a few hunters but we're pretty sure it was visited by Ute people from "way back when."
It's kind of nice to have such a mountain in our "back yard", yet visited by so few.  Thanks to you hikers who have the gumption to take steps upwards, usually when we're off  trail.  

Next Monday we'll hike at 10 a.m. Meet before 10 at the visitor center in South Fork.  Pay little attention to some of the printed or computer information if it has another time. (0ne new hiker missed our hike this morning because he saw something somewhere that said we hiked at 9:30.  I can't remember any time when that happened.)  
I don't know what to do on Wednesdays starting in November.  Few people show up on that day.  These are pleasant hikes and we try to make them informative as well as good for our physical well-being.  But low numbers may indicate a distaste for those mid-week treks.
Thanks to Barbara for the pics! 

Begin forwarded message:

From: Barbara Thiesfeld <>
Subject: Fort from early 2017
Date: November 1, 2017 7:30:51 PM MDT
To: Douglas Knudson <>

Sent from my iPad

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Today's hike

A nice bunch of hikers (about 8) tested out some of the new trail routes to the south of our County Seat.  Few if any of us had used all the switchbacks, ups and downs, of this rather complex trail.  Finally, we got to a point where our never-before-puzzled leader decided to turn back the way we came up and down.
 Where we stopped at about 3.5 miles or more, it dawned on the oldest person on the hike that he once brought a group over a hill behind us and down a deep gully to our southeast.  So he and Dennis decided to explore that trail-less route and hopefully find the cars (not too difficult since it was clear that the vehicles were to the East).  So, the main group followed the leader who followed the trail.  Dennis and I didn't see them at noon, when we arrived at the parking place with minimum difficulty (almost all downhill). We pasted a note on a windshield and hoped that their trek was pleasant.  Their up-hill treks probably were rested by the down-hill stretches.

On Wednesday at 9:30, you may join us in a much shorter, but also interesting site close to town.  The plan is to locate an historic Indian site (camping and hunting probably) from way back in our South Fork history. This is on the lower reaches of Sentinel Mountain, starting at the area behind Doc's ski store.  Most of you have been near this location, but only one case of actually seeing it is known, and that has not been relocated recently.  This is not a long hike, but requires alert eyes and location techniques.  As you know, the Ute people, who still visit here frequently, were the masters of the mountains of Colorado and Eastern Utah.  I believe that this campsite was one of the "vacation outposts" of a leading hunter.  Join us and let's see what you think.  
We'll be careful with the weather:  if it looks like snow, please dress appropriately.   Whether we locate the old site or not, we'll try to be back to the cars no later than noon.  Please join us if you have good eyes and strong legs.  We won't have more than about 2.5 miles of walking and looking.  This is a hike with a scattered search mission.

Coming Events:
Next week(November) we will go along with the national time change.  This will let us start a little later, by setting our watches one hour back.  In other words, we'll be hiking, snowshoeing or Norwegian skiing- X/C, depending on which covering appears on the ground.  That means than NEXT WEEK (not this Wednesday) we will depart the visitor center at 10 a.m., (unless you are informed otherwise).  If you want assurance, call me at 719-873-5239 before 9:25 a.m. on hike day or before.

Thanks to Dennis Shepherd, whose camera functioned when mine ran out of energy.

More photos by Barbara Thiesfeld


Monday, October 2, 2017

Yes, we did

Our Auto hike and several short strolls on Wednesday were glorious. Three made it all the way to Platoro's hospitality and good food. The scenery was spectacular.
a little snow was on the 13ers. None was on the leaves, but they had every color, from green to pink, to red, to orange, to gold, to rich yellow, on every hillside.

Deer were out and they posed for the photographers. The sun was sunny, then hid behind clouds, then popped out again. There was very little rain so we walked a couple of trails along the spectacular trails. We named the different fir trees, standing so stately amongst the suffering spruces .

The big burgers seemed to be specially made for us, along with a big bowl of ice cream. On the way home, we encountered our first gentle snow (the road wasn't wet yet). When we got below 10,500 feet, we were in a bit of rain, but not for long.

I've visited the Platoro area every September for about 15 years. This was one of the most scenic and varied color shows ever. It was a pleasure to have new folks (Mr and Mrs Lick) with me. They were excited and expressive all the way. They repeatedly stated "we're going to love living in Colorado." I was pleased to help with the what I consider the most spectacular show in the state. We were glad to help bring the snow to our town this morning.

This completes my Wednesday hikes for October, as Judy and I are attending two meetings: one is the Old Spanish Trail Association national gathering in Barstow, California. The other is the wedding of our eldest grandson in West Des Moines, Iowa. Some of you know Jordan from a concert he offered at Penny's house. He hopes to be back later this fall with his classical guitar. We may do it with dinner at the Windsor Hotel in our county seat.

I think we will continue hikes, snowshoeing, and XC skiing through the winter, probably on Mondays, assuming interest. I'll see you in the snow.

--Doug Knudson

Color ride Thursday

Let's take a ride up East Bear trail, then up past Dyer Park, make a loop around Middle Park and come back on the Middle Alder trail.
If the weather isn't good, just up the Bear trail and back down the Middle Alder trail and back to the trucks. 

Meet at the parking lot on Bear Creek Road, 1/4 mile up from CR 15 at 9am. We should see lots of color in the Aspen groves. ..


Saturday, September 23, 2017

Dunes Photos

Wednesday hike with artistry by Linda and Margie (thanks, my camera ran out of energy).
We followed a trail to the pass in the Sangres.  This was more or less where lots of Indians of many tribes traveled (we think).  It was also the passage of
Zebulon Pike and his men in the winter (1806),  Antoine Robidoux (hauling trade goods from Bent's Old Fort on the prairie to his trading post at Fort Uncompahgre), and John Charles Fremont in 1848.

Welcome committee at the top

Aspen in the sky

The hikers

The sand piles

Hiking through the rocks

Almost autumn

Dunes and the SLV

Top of the Sangres

Trail companion

You are welcome to take our Monday hike all winter.  Our Wednesday "hike" will be a drive over the mountains to several short strolls among the aspen (often the best show in Coloradp) topped off with a lunch at
Platoro.  Both of these events will start at 9 a.m. departure from the South Fork Visitor Center.