Sunday, September 21, 2008

Fern Canyon, Nebel Horn, Bear Peak

After recovering a bit from the race, we headed out for a "short" hike in Fern Canyon. I think it's named that because there is exactly one fern on the trail. This steep trail goes up to the summit of Bear Peak. Along the way we scoped out a little cave/tunnel formed by some gigantic boulders.

Further up the trail we scrambled up to the Nebel Horn -- the rock ridge/summit that Adam and I gave up on Thursday. (I found a class 3 approach to the summit but it wouldn't have been good to do on Thursday, so in hindsight, even though the trail was very close, it was good that we turned back.)

The Nebel Horn is really neat! There's a giant hueco on top the size of a 10-person jacuzzi. From the top I could see some climbers on a nearby rock. And if you look closely in the picture above, you'll find Laurel hanging out at the base of the Nebel Horn (zoom in).

From the Nebel Horn up to the Bear Peak summit the trail got even steeper and wilder. It felt like one of the 14ers we've done. We were both winded by the time we reached the summit. I think this is one of the best hikes we've done around Boulder -- excellent views, scrambling, and hiking.

We ate some granola bars at the summit and started the hike back down -- the way up took around 3 hours and we had about 2 hours of daylight to get back down. By the time we got back to NCAR it was just starting to get dark. (BTW, the pink building dead-center in this photo is NCAR, where we started!)

(all pics from this hike)

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