We had a great time; well, most of us anyway. The Old Tin Cup shortcut presented a particular challenge to two riders on Monday. Dan's group found out on Thursday how miserable and cold it could get when a cold front moves through and it rains hard. Did I hear somebody mention snowflakes? They got caught on Cumberland Pass in a downpour. It showered on all of us everyday but that is expected this time of year.
There were several roads that were blocked by snow in the Crested Butte area. The avalanche damage was also extensive. I saw several pine trees ten to twelve inches in diameter sheared off at the base. Several aspen groves were recovering from being flattened and there was a lot of debris in the bottom of the creeks and rivers.
I checked out the Iron Chest trail while we were in the area. They had removed all the big rocks in order to carry supplies to seal the old mine at the top. It was leaching bad things into Chalk Creek. They have replaced most of the big rocks on the trail. It is not as difficult as when Lloyd and I rode it in 2003, (see pictures on TR 2003 page) but it is still difficult to extreme.
Photos by Bruce Branson
Going up Antero Monday - 13,200 ft. - Notice the ATVs on the trail below.
Looking down from Antero 14,100 feet - Monday
Heard of elk - Williams Pass - Tuesday
Williams Pass looking back toward Tomichi Pass - Tuesday
Tomichi Pass - from Hancock - Tuesday
Hancock Pass from Tomichi - Tuesday
Marmot want an Oreo? - Hancock Pass - Tuesday
West side of Alpine Tunnel/Palisades Wall from Tomichi - Tuesday
The following link will route you to history of the Alpine Tunnel/Palisades Wall.
West side of Paradise Divide/Ule Pass - Wednesday
Emerald Lake - The road below was blocked by snow but passable - Wednesday
Old townsite of Scholfield - Wednesday
The entrance to Crystal River Canyon was still blocked by snow.
Gothic Mountain/Upper end of Natural Area - Wednesday
Gothic Natural Area/Crested Butte Ski Area in background
Group going up east side of Paradise Divide - Wednesday
Taylor Reservoir - Friday
One of the Texas Lakes on Texas Creek - Friday