Mt. Elbert Trail

Early Start
Yes, it is dark outside.

August 16, 2009 – It was our last weekend in Colorado.  So, we decided to get up before dawn, grab sweatshirts and head lamps, drive three hours into the mountains, and go for a hike.  We got breakfast, made coffee, grabbed our stuff, and headed out.  It was early.  And dark.  And early.  Coffee could only do so much.

False Summit
Don’t be fooled, this is just a false summit.

We reached drove through Leadville, down a rocky dirt road, and finally reached the parking lot.  We got some nice views of the sunrise over Leadville.  After about 2.25 miles, and 2200′ of elevation gain, we passed treeline.  At this point, we decided to enjoy the views, catch our breath, and head back down the trail.  We’re glad we did, since in a clearing just past treeline Tony noticed a little blue grouse happily eating grass.  This was a new bird for us, and since she’s only found out West, we decided that was a fitting end to our CO travels.

Mt Massive
Mt. Elbert’s massive next door neighbor, Mt. Massive

On the drive back to Denver, we admired the historic buildings and painted advertisements in Leadville.

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