Day 7, 7/23, 27mi (M-173): Herringbone Creek

It was an overcast morning but relatively mild for 11,000’ The clouds were hanging low obscuring the upper peaks.

Most of the day was spent hiking 1-2mi climbs through pine forests. This was the view to the East back toward Leadville.

A bit to chilly for a dip…at least for my taste.

The weather forecast had called for afternoon thunderstorms and there was fair amount of thunder but only an occasional drizzle before the sun popped back out. This is the view of Mt. Elbert, Colorado’s highest peak and the 2nd highest (~14,450’) in the contiguous US after Mt. Whitney. There is a 3.5mi side trail that will get you there…I skipped it as I’ve done it before, plus an extra 4000’ of climbing didn’t sound terribly appealing at the time.

Today’s miles weren’t easy with the constant up and down but they did seem to tick by without too much extra effort. I managed to roll into camp at the reasonable hour of 6:15 and listened to more thunder roll by from my tent.

Day 6, 7/22, 25mi (M-146): Tennessee Creek

Today was a fantastic stretch of trail. Quite a bit of it I’ve done before both in the winter (Janet’s Cabin and the Mitchell Creek ski tour) as well as summer excursions up Guller Creek from copper.

This was last nights sunset over Frisco. The sun was a ball of fire as it burned through the smoky sky.

After taking the 6:30am bus to Copper to pick up where I left the trail yesterday, I made my way under the ski lifts before re-entering the forest.

Working my way up Guller Creek above tree line.

The wildflowers on the way to Searle Pass were phenomenal!

Looking back toward Frisco and the Gore Range.

The trail is incredibly well maintained…so smooth and well graded.

A field of dreams

I finished the day just beyond Tennessee Pass near Leadville, CO. After only see three other thru hikers all day there were four other tents set up by the creek I planned to stay at…fortunately there was plenty of room 🙂