Thursday, September 20, 2018

5 Mile Campsite - Autumn Photo Essay - 9/20/18

North Loop to Charleston Peak

North Loop leaving Cave Spring

Trail Canyon Trail

Leaving the Trail Canyon Trailhead

Panorama from North Loop above Trail Canyon Saddle


Heading to Cave Spring
 Every year, one of the best hikes during the change of the season from summer to fall is the North Loop up from Trail Canyon. There is a very large grove of aspens around 2.75 miles from the trailhead; beginning just after Cave Spring. Of course there are many aspens that spread out over the entire hike up that accentuate the beauty of the surrounding limestone / dolomite mountains. Today, nine hikers started at Trail Canyon and hiked 5 miles up to a large campsite that is often used by backpackers choosing to do Charleston Peak in two days.

Almost to Cave Spring

Washing Sticks at Cave Spring (... it's a thing!)

Aspen Lined North Loop

Switchback within Aspens

Color near Wall Corner

Nine Hikers

Fall Color in Kyle Canyon (both sides!)
 This was a particularly strong gathering of club members and I believe there was a race from the trailhead to the Trail Canyon saddle! I did not ... er ... could not participate! However, by the time I reached the saddle, I believe the group had rested up and wanted to enjoy the color that was to come. We settled into a "normal" pace and we hiked up the mountain; stopping for photos often. Just wanted to say, our entire hike time of 5 hours was the same as last year's time and 1/2 hour less than the year before. Just sayin' kiddos.

Setsuko at 4.25 Mile Cliff Overlook


Charleston Peak from Big Falls Overlook

5 Mile Campsite Lee Canyon Overlook

Enjoying a Break at 5 Mile Campsite

Returning to Roots Corner

Nearing Mummy Junction
 We made it to the campsite and took our break. Soon, we started down. The trip down took less time but a few more photos still had to be taken. When we reached the Trail Canyon saddle, I couldn't hold them back any longer! The downhill race was on! Hey, it's all good. Just take care of yourselves, kids. It was an absolutely gorgeous day in the mountains at the peak of the autumn color. What's not to like? Love you guys!

10 miles; 3000 feet elevation gain; 5 hours

Mummy Scree Field in Distance

Return down Aspen Lined Switchbacks

Heading back to Cave Spring

Unbelievable Color Display

Arrival at Cave Spring ... again

Hiking down Trail Canyon

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