Alan and Jonna's 2005 hikes

Jonna and Alan have plans to spend a couple of weeks in Tibet in 2006 doing a circumambulation around Mount Kailash and Lake Mansarovar. Since the three day clockwise route around the sacred 22,000 ft high peak means traversing passes of around 18,000 ft in altitude, we have been trying to get out hiking in the Colorado Rockies every weekend in an effort to train for some high altitude hiking. While we haven't done any fourteeners yet, we have been out nearly every weekend hiking above 10,000 ft.

Here are some quick reviews and photos of some of our favorite hikes from the summer of 2005:

1) Mueller State Park, CO - June 5, 2005 - We went down to Manitou Springs, CO for a weekend and did some hiking at both Mueller State Park and up to Horsethief Falls near Cripple Creek. At Mueller we hiked Lone Eagle trail which is about 4.5 miles round trip. The hike up to Horsethief Falls is about three miles round trip. It was a beautiful summer day and both were great hikes.

2) Bryce Canyon, UT - July 2, 2005 - Jonna was driving out to California mid-summer so we decided to sneak in a hiking trip to Utah on her way west. I rode the motorcycle out and back while Jonna continued on to San Francisco in her car. We stayed in Escalante, UT and went hiking different two days. The first was a day hike at Bryce. We intended to do the Navajo Loop trail but it was closed so we went down into the Canyon from Sunrise Point and around to the lower end of Wall Street. The total hike was around 4 miles with 600 ft of elevation change going down from the rim into the valley and then back up.

3) Zion - July 3, 2005 - The day after Bryce, we did two short hikes in Zion National Park. In the morning we did the trail to both Middle and Lower Emerald Pools and then in the afternoon did the Pa'rus Trail along the Virgin River. Emerald Pools is about 2 miles with about 200 ft of elevation change climbing up the Canyon wall. Pa'rus is about 3.5 miles long but is pretty flat.

4) Heart Lake - July 31, 2005. We have a geocache about two miles up the Heart Lake trail at East Portal. We end up hiking in there twice a year, once to place the cache in the spring and then returning in the Fall to retrieve it. This was a short four mile hike with around 800 foot of elevation gain.

5) Blue Lake - August 7, 2005. We did the Blue Lake trail in the Indian Peaks Wilderness area at the perfect time. The hike was around 5 miles round trip with just under 1,000 ft of elevation gain.

6) James Peak Lake - August 21, 2005. Our friend Holly was visiting from Boston so we decided to go hiking the valley below James Peak. We drove in on the Kingston Peak pass 4WD drive road. The hike into the valley drops about 500 feet. Our total hike was probably around 4 miles.

7) Arapahoe Glacier - August 28, 2005 - 8 miles, 2000 ft

8) Twin Sisters - September 3, 2005 - 8.5 miles, 2200 ft

9) Grand Tetons - September 9, 2005. We had planned to do a few hikes in the Tetons but bad weather changed our plans. We did one small hike and a float trip on the Snake River. The hike was Heron Pond and Swan Lake which was around 4 miles but mainly flat.

10) Lake Isabelle - September 25, 2005 - 8 miles, 1500 ft

11) Diamond Lake - October 10, 2005 - 4 miles, 1000 ft

12) Heart Lake - October 15, 2005 - 9 miles, 2000 ft.

13) Buchanan Pass - October 30, 2005 - 5 miles, 800 ft

14) Royal Arch - November 6, 2005 - 3 miles, 1450 ft.

15) Mount Sanitas - November 25, 2005 - Red Rocks 1.2 miles, 300 ft Mt. Sanitas 3.1 miles, 1300 ft.

16) 10th Mountain Division Hut trip - December 3, 2005 - 9.5 miles, 1800 ft

If you enjoyed these you may also enjoy checking out some photos from our 2006 hikes.

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Alan Fleming