2011 Boulder CO
6/24/11 – Chatauqua Park – We’ve been out to Boulder two times before and have been really impressed with the area and trail options. Our first day we have always headed to Chatauqua Park to do an easy hike to get acclimated to the elevation and what we’ll be in for during the week. It’s a very nice park with a number of scenic options that won’t hurt you to bad. This time we hiked up to Royal Arch. Cool natural arch and great view of Boulder.
6/25/11 – Heil Ranch – We rented bikes from the Trek Bicycle Store off of Baseline. We rode a 12.65 mile figure 8 loop at Heil Ranch. This place has a great rocky technical start as you climb up the mountain. Then you get a chance to take a little break for a couple of miles in the loop. Great place just north of boulder off of Left Hand Canyon Road.
6/26/11 – Bobcat Ridge – We rode our bikes at Bobcat Ridge (14.2 miles). Due to not knowing about bikes not being allowed on some of the trails we ended up riding an out and back on the Ginny Trail. That climb was a tough technical workout. The turnaround provided a very fast descent to finish the ride.
6/27/11 – Hall Ranch – Today we ran to give our biking legs a break (15.6 miles). We did the foot and horse travel only Nighthawk Trail to where it met up with the Button Rock Trail (the end of the Nighthawt Trail had some great views of Longs Peak). We took this 2 mile trail out to an overlook of one of the areas reservoirs. It was a great place to check out the mtn views, have a snack, and watch the birds soar overhead. We took the Button Rock Trail back 2 miles and then finished up by running the right hand side of the Nelson loop and the Bitterbrush Trail.
6/28/11 – Valmont Bike Park – This is a cutting edge bike park that just opened in Boulder. This place had it all. We tried a little of everything and watch the more experienced rider hit the Large and XL jumps and stunts (rode 9.25 miles of circles).
6/29/11 – Longs Peak – 13.2 miles – We hiked from the Longs Peak trailhead off of HWY 7. This trail starts out at over 9400ft and can take you to the peak at 14,259 approximately 8 miles later. The trail is a nice climb through the forest and then quickly takes you above tree line where at the 5.9 mile mark you hit the boulder field (which is just that, no trail marking, just a bunch of boulders at the base of the peak). I should note we were in hiking gear and had some extra layers. The people we saw towards the top had climbing gear (crampons and ice axes) to deal with the weather and slushy footing at the peak. We had already encountered some snowy sections on the way up so once we got to the boulder field we had to be very careful to find a route that wouldn’t have us falling through the snow and onto the jagged boulders. We decided to try to get as high as we could so we climbed the boulders until we made it close to the Keyhole. Just to the right of the Keyhole there was a ledge that we climbed out onto for some of the best views of the trip. It was here that we were hit with high, 40+ mph winds coming over the range. We took in the sites and then started to head back. Although we didn’t get to the top we were able to hit another elevation high – 13.259ft.
6/30/11 – Sourdough Trail – 15.7 miles – Today we headed to Nederland and then come back into town to check out the quaint little town known for Frozen Ned. We headed north on route 72 to the dirt road 116 that heads to the University of Colorado Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research. Just up this road is the Trailhead for Sourdough. This trail was in good shape, was scenic, and more uphill on the way out. We ended by intersecting with dirt road 232, we took a left and headed up to Left Hand Reservoir. This is a reservoir at 10,000 ft at the base of many mtn peaks. Once we had a little break we headed back on a mostly downhill ride back to the car.
7/1/11 – Valmont Bike Park – we had to take our bikes back today so we decided to head back to the bike park and ride it again. We were a little more adventurous but didn’t do many of the jumps. We mainly stayed on the XS – Medium sections.
7/1/11 – Betasso Preserve – This is just outside of Boulder heading out on Canyon which turns into Boulder Canyon Drive. We decided to get in a little more trail time before we had to head out so we came here for a hike. Since we were out here in 2009 they have added the Benjamin Loop for 9 miles figure 8 Loop. This makes for 2 loops connected by a common trail. Both loops have direction of travel. This direction changes every so often to keep things interesting. This is a nice park with some well made trails. We saw a lot of bikers while out there.