Twin Lakes

Greetings from the small community of Twin Lakes, Colorado. We have now hiked 175 miles of the Colorado Trail with 309 miles remaining.

The hike is going well and the weather has improved. It’s been three days since any significant rain has fallen.

We saw a red fox this morning from our tent site, Deb’s second sighting of a red fox since she saw one strolling through the town of Breckenridge.

Last Saturday on our second day in Breckenridge we slack packed from Copper Mountain, 14.4 miles back to our hostel room at the Fireside Inn (a great place to stay!) The day’s 10% chance of rain turned into 100% by the time we had 6 miles remaining to make it back to our room. Thankfully we had a shower and hot tub waiting for us! We both really liked Breckenridge and talked about a longer stay there someday.

We still haven’t seen any moose or elk or cougar or bear. The alpine meadows have been mostly quiet.

The Colorado trail itself can get quite steep, especially in the wilderness sections where the grades don’t have to make the mountain bikers happy (bikes are not allowed in the wilderness sections.) Deb is nick-naming the trail the “calf-burner.” The other oddity of the trail is the high treeline – it seems we have to be higher than 11,000 feet before we have expansive views.

Breckenridge

Today we passed the 100 mile mark in our hike and we arrived in the resort community of Breckenridge, Colorado.

The Colorado Trail gives up any pretense of being a wilderness experience here as the trail drops down from the mountains between a mobile home park and a condominium complex to a bus stop on the outskirts of Breckenridge. (The mobile home park was nicer than any I have seen with many of the mobile homes built like log cabins that surrounded a small lake).

Feeling it best to adapt to our new surroundings, we checked into the lovely Fireside Inn Hostel, showered, washed clothes, and sampled one of the many restaurants. Deb has made plans for us to “slack pack” the next 12 miles of trail.

Slack packing is hiking without carrying a heavy backpack full of camping gear. Tomorrow we will catch the free shuttle bus to the Copper Mountain ski resort and walk the 12 miles of Colorado Trail back to Breckenridge for another night of luxury at the Fireside Inn. On Saturday we will resume backpacking from Copper Mountain.

The past few days have not all been luxury. A few days ago we crossed over the Continental Divide for the first time with a long strenuous climb to just shy of 12,000 feet.

Colorado Weather

The weather has been interesting on the Colorado Trail. It rains every day like clockwork at three PM — except on the days it rains at noon or five PM or during the night. The thunderstorms usually don’t last very long, but they can be pretty exciting with lightning and loud thunder and sometimes hail. […]