Here is a photo that I took of Mt. Yale with Hartenstein Lake in the foreground. Mt. Yale is one of Colorado's many "14ers." These are mountains that are over 14,000 feet in elevation at the summit. The trailhead to Mt. Yale is located close to the town of Buena Vista and is easy to access. Nearby Mt. Princeton and Mt. Harvard are also visible as you hike to the summit.
Here is a quick video of a recent Kawasaki KLR ride along the Peak to Peak Highway, Hwy 119, and some forest service roads in Gilpin County, Colorado. We got rained on a little on the way back, but overall it was a nice day.
For those of you that are fly fisherman, I thought I would point out a great free online fly fishing magazine. This is Fly is available to view online for free, or you can download the current and past issues for $2.00 each. I think they do a great job with the photography and articles, especially for a free magazine. The photo and link below go to the magazine and you can subscribe on their site to get notified when additional issues are published.
As a follow up to my previous post here: Mt. Quandary Ascent, I wanted to post another photo from the same trip. Here is a view from the east ridge of Mt. Quandary looking north towards Grays and Torrey's. This was taken the previous morning before the snow storm moved in. The snow in the foreground is where we built our snow cave to spend a night.
Mt. Quandary, Grays and Torreys are all 14ers. These peaks rise above 14,000 feet above sea level and provide hiking and mountaineering opportunities for all different skill levels. The popular routes on these three peaks are considered fairly easy climbs and can be done without technical equipment.
Here is a picture of a couple hikers ascending the east ridge of Mt. Quandary in April of 2014. We spent two nights in a snow cave. It was the first time that I have built a snow shelter and slept in it. The temperature stayed a fairly consistent 30-35 degrees inside, which was about 10-15 degrees warmer than the temperature outside overnight.
The most interesting experience in the snow shelter was the stillness. Compared to a tent, the snow shelter completely protected from the wind and noise from the snow storm that hit us the second night. I can definitely understand why some of the Denali climbers elect to build snow shelters as opposed to staying in a tent.
These conditions aren't the easiest to ascend a 14er, but Quandary is a fairly easy climb in the summer. The trail is fairly well marked (assuming it isn't covered completely in snow) and makes for an obvious route to the summit.
The following is a quick list of items that you should bring with out on any outdoor adventure. You can never predict when injury or sickness may strike, but having these items can help improve your chances of getting back to civilization after any catastrophe.