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Josie at Michigan Lakes, Aug 4, 2012

August 18, 2012

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My daughter Josie told me a while back that she wanted to hike up to Michigan Lakes some time during her visit this summer.  She liked the photos from my first hike (see here for a description of my first hike to this area).

Before I go any further in the trip’s description, here is my standard, rather longish, comment. Please check my photo galleries here for all the larger and higher quality photos for this trip. The photos in that gallery are a quantum leap in size and quality compared to the little teaser photos I put in this site’s trip narrative (plus there are more of them). See below for a Google Map link to the location of the hike.  (If you want to see all my trips, this link will direct you to a MapQuest map that shows ALL my trips. Please note that some of the links for the hikes are located somewhere in the hike itself, while other links on the map are the trailhead for the hike located on a road. The issue being, even if the link looks like it’s pointing to a road, that’s actually just the trailhead.) All links should open a new browser window.

I said, “Sure, Josie.  We can eat breakfast in Fort Collins, run up to Cameron Pass and do the hike, then go into Walden to see Kate, and get back to Fort Collins in time to go eat at Coops.”

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In addition to the MapQuest map link above, please see a live Google map below. Point “A” from Fort Collins leads to point “B” at the trailhead.  I parked the car at the Forest Service picnic area that is right at the top of Cameron Pass.  We walked across the highway to the trailhead.  The trailhead starts just up from where the Michigan Ditch road hits the highway.

You will need to purchase a Colorado State Forest pass at the trailhead (self-serve).  Cost $3/day/person.  So, $6.  Very worth while.  If you hike a lot in the state forest, an annual pass would probably be a good purchase to look into.

You can “grab” the map to scroll it around and use the “+” and “-“ icons in the upper left hand corner to zoom in or out to get more detail. You can also click on the “View Larger Map” link and it will bring up the map in a larger window (if you right click on the “View Larger Map” link and select “Open Link in new tab/window” then you can have both my blog and the map open at the same time).

“How long is the hike, dad?”

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“Oh, don’t really remember, Josie.  I think only 4 or 5 miles round trip.”

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“Okay, that sounds good,” said Josie.

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Well, turned out I was a little off on the number of miles.

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Was actually 11 miles round trip.

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Luckily, the weather was just about perfect and it was rather pretty.  And, we did have a great breakfast at Snooze before leaving Fort Collins.  I think we got to the restaurant about one minute after they opened the door.

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I was a little surprised at the number of ‘rooms we saw.  And the number of wildflowers.  I had expected it to be too hot and dry.

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It was actually quite nice and green.

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Once we got up to the lake area, it was a bit windy.  So we hunted around for somewhere out of the wind to eat some cheese and crackers.

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Found a good spot and took a bit of a rest.

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After our rest, we headed back down the trail in order to make our next stop for the day.  Walden, CO.  On the way back down the trail, we saw several ‘rooms that were very large.  This one was pretty good size, but I think we saw one or two others that were larger.

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Iron Mountain in the distance.  Trap Park is right on the other side of that mountain.

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Some time I want to hike over that ridge to the right of Iron Mountain.  Pretty sure I know how to get on the trail now.

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So, as per normal, we hit a time/space warp where the trail intersected with the ditch.  Took around a 100 miles and 3 days to make it back to the car.  But, we eventually did reach the car and drive down into Walden to see Kate.

Once we got to Walden, Josie resuscitated herself with a large cup of chocolate mint chip ice cream (I had a few bites myself : ) and we had a very nice visit with Kate (and Pahs).

And, yes, we did make it to Coops by 8:30 that evening.

Awesome day.

– Geoff Weatherford

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One Comment leave one →
  1. October 25, 2012 4:21 pm

    What a great thing to get to do with your daughter. Being out side together enjoying nature. Loved your pictures also. Thanks for sharing.

    Backyardblazer.com

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