Thursday, October 29, 2009

Chautauqua Snowshoeing

Boulder didn't just get a lot of snow for October, it got a lot of snow period. Almost two feet, more in the foothills. We went to Chautauqua this afternoon to play for a few hours.

We started up the "ski jump" hill and just plowed through the snow up towards the First Flatiron. Lots of people were sledding and riding, some had shovels to make jumps.

Pretty soon we were past the crowds and had the forest to ourselves. Since we know the area well we wandered around off trail for a while -- we only saw one person in the next 2 hours of trekking. Occasionally we would come across one of the official trails or a social trail made by a hiker, snowboarder, or snowshoer. Followed some, abandoned others.

At one point we were trying to follow a ridge and we got cliffed out. We couldn't go any higher so we had to traverse sideways, which took us into a snow-covered scree field. Not much fun to get out of. The snow was bubbling like a lava lamp here:

Once in a while we got a glimpse of a Flatiron. This is the Third:

We found the First Flatiron access trail and took it to the end of the Spy access trail. Didn't see the buck that usually hangs out in that neighborhood. We checked out the base of the First and then headed back on trails. Some of the snowboarders had constructed a pretty good ramp.

Once we got back to the ski jump hill we started running to see who could manage to fall the most (least?).

It was a lot of fun to get outside in the snow today. Next week it should be back up in the 50s-60s and we'll be on bikes instead.

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