Colorado Trail Day 18: Debris Flows that Go

Daily Neet Beat
We have an easy 4.3 mile hike today to get to Mount Princeton Hot Springs. It is all downhill, mostly through private land, and 3.2 miles of it are along a road. So we take our time in the morning, dry the tent off, and start a little after 9am.
We are traveling through a lot of private property today. I had to read this sign twice, it says “.7 miles” but the “.” Looks like a knot in the wood.

We get to the dirt road fairly soon and Ray spots a shelter for measuring debris flow activity. The area around Chalk Creek and Mount Princeton Hot Springs contains a number of debris flow paths.

Debris flow path coming off of Mount Princeton
The fan of material in the bottom left of the picture is from past debris flows. There are a number of houses below it.

Debris flows are sediment laden and can have small clay particles to large boulders or trees. A number of homes have been built on the fans created by these debris flows. There is at least one or more debris flows in this area every year and it is a high risk area for geologic hazards. Ray had a student work on getting real time data from these monitor stations on the build up of material in the channels.We drop down into the valley to the Mount Princeton Hot Springs Resort and are able to check into our room by noon. Time for a shower, food and a soak!Just the Facts


Total Miles: 4.3
Cumulative Miles: 229.6
Trail Segments: 13
Camp Elevation: 8205 at Mt. Princeton Hot Springs Resort
Elevation Gain:   0 feet
Elevation Loss:  1332 feet
Weather: Partly cloudy, rain in the afternoon

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