Colorado Trail Day 3: Flying Monkeys and Flowers with Yellow Eyes

Daily Neet Beat

Ray is now in charge of getting us up after I didn’t hear the alarm on my watch yesterday. We are up at 4am and on the trail by 5:30am. We are trying to beat the heat of the day and are climbing from 7,391 feet to above 10,400 feet. At least at 10,000 feet it will be cooler but there is a lot of “up”.

Heading into Lost Creek wilderness area
In the early morning we pass a rifle range sign. It is quiet maybe because we are there before 6:30am in the morning. The signs says to stay on the trail. I think I will follow that!
Ok, Ok…I will stay on the trail….
Today is not my best day. I am strong on the climb as we wind up through the pine and aspen forests but by mid-morning when we top out on the ridge above 10,000 feet my back is sore. My pack has rubbed a raw spot on my back where the top of my pants are and on my right collar bone.  My pack only weighed 33 lbs when we started in Denver which is actually pretty good for 8 days of food.  I know my pack will get lighter as we eat food and will lessen the weight on my back. I adjust straps, my waist belt and EAT.
Hiking through the forest
Beautiful aspen groves
We spend most of the day in the Lost Creek wilderness which is beautiful and peaceful. Everything is beautiful in this area except for a very ugly squirrel. He looks like a flying monkey from the Wizard of Oz.
Ugly “flying monkey” squirrel
No mountain bikes in wilderness areas which means you don’t have nice switchbacks going up but you don’t get surprised by someone on a bike coming up behind you suddenly. We are at camp around 2pm and stop because we have a good stream and camping spot. We spent time looking at flowers, I catch up on my blog, and we filter water. It is cool at 10,464 feet.
Parry’s Primrose with yellow “eyes”
Camp 3 at Brookside McCurdy Trail
Just the Facts:
Total Miles: 15.6 miles
Cumulative Miles: 51.9 miles
Trail Segments: 5.2 miles in Segment 3 and 11.4 miles in Segment 4
Camp Elevation: 10,464 feet
Elevation Gain: 3344 feet
Elevation Loss: 284 feet
Weather: sunny and cooler in the afternoon

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