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    Mary Falcone reviewed Carpenter Peak Trail

    4 months ago

    This was one of my favorite trails. It’s close to town and has a little of everything from, wide open trails, red rock formations, foothill/mountain view’s, full city views, forest covered trail, trees with leaves changing covered trail, small overgrown trail, and a good workout...it has it all. Like others said, don’t be fooled by the strenuous sign it’s accurately a “moderate” trail. Went on a cooler Saturday so didn’t see too many other hikers but suspect it’s much busier on a better weather day. I lucked into a mostly quiet and peaceful hike though. $7 to get into the park or free with your CO parks pass. Plenty of parking and nice to have indoor plumbing bathrooms at the visitor center trailhead. I will definitely be doing this hike again sometime.

    Mary Falcone completed Carpenter Peak Trail

    4 months ago

    Mary Falcone reviewed Saint Mary's Glacier

    5 months ago

    It was Labor Day so I expected crowds and they were for sure there. We arrived late, about 9:30 and there was plenty of room in the lower lot. When we left around 11:30 the lot was crazy. People were making spots, nearly blocking cars in and people had little patience. Hike to the lake itself it rocky and a more a “moderate” based on incline and loose rocks but it’s so short it probably gets bounced down to an “easy”. Be aware though it’s not a typical “easy” that is just a walking path. Lake is very pretty and reflect off the water nicely. We took our trekking poles and hiked up the glacier. Fun experience. Also saw two skiers taking runs on the glacier. I sure wouldn’t do it but it was fun to watch! Trekking poles are a big plus if you plan to go past the lake at all or over the glacier to the nearby trails. Based on the easy rating and proximity to Denver this trail is packed and packed with little kids and families. So just know it will be loud and somewhat (ok, a LOT) annoying if you go on a weekend. Still a quick and pretty hike with options to take it up to a moderate and get away from most of the kids if you go higher.

    Mary Falcone completed Saint Mary's Glacier

    5 months ago

    Mary Falcone reviewed Balanced Rock, Chautauqua Mountain Loop

    5 months ago

    As of two weeks ago the lake side of the loop was closed. There are signs at the beginning that note that. We trekked on and took the advice of others and went up the steep portion first. Not easy to find so definitely download the map and have it open and hunt for the river and a low point to cross. If you follow the easily marked trail at the beginning you are on the wrong path. Once headed up, it’s definitely nearly straight up for about 1.5 miles. I’d recommend trekking poles for support. Up you can manage without them, down they are nearly a must have. It’s a good workout on the way up. Towards the top there are lots of large “balanced” rocks you can climb on. We decided to chance it and kept going down the lake side hoping it wasn’t closed to hikers but just cars. Saw a few campers and evidences of rock slides they have been repairing. Eventually you get to a locked gate when that portion is closed. Was able to go around the side (steep and some barbed wire but passable) and get back to the beginning where we parked. Definitely enjoyed the loop more than an out and back. Hopefully it’s open now after repairs have been firmed up.

    Mary Falcone reviewed Legault Mountain Trail

    6 months ago

    Trail is close to Denver and right off 285 so it’s easy to get to. I was tired after a weekend hike so this was a perfect moderate hike. If you just do the trail as marked I would call this more an upper easy hike. If you take the “secret” trail to the top it’s moderate. Took me two loops of the Old Ski Loop trail to find the secret summit trail. It is NOT the first one you come to where to go up about 100 feet to a cluster of rocks with a partial view. I searched around there for a while. It’s above that on the marked trail (if you went left to right on the loop). I added a picture with markings. You won’t see the “no trespassing” sign someone else referenced until after you are already on the trail (and even then it’s off in the distance and you have to look for it). The trail to the summit is pretty well marked as someone has lined quite a bit of it with old tree branches. There are times you will question if you went the right way. Trust your gut...it’s a pretty intuitive trail. Don’t get fooled by the first false summit with good views. Keep going until you find the top and the geo markers and register. It’s probably less than .5 mile from the Old Ski Loop trail so it’s worth it. Someone should bring a new little notepad for the register and a new pen. Both are running low! Gorgeous views from the top and TONS of ladybugs. This will be a great trail for fall with the Aspens along it.

    Mary Falcone completed Legault Mountain Trail

    6 months ago

    Mary Falcone reviewed Mount Bierstadt Trail

    6 months ago

    This was my first 14er and it’s supposedly one of the “easy” ones, but this is no walk in the park. I went with a group of mostly newbies and we started at 5:50am knowing we would be slower and wanted to be down early in case of storms. The bridge over the marsh was frosted at the time and SLIPPERY. We opted to jump down and walk through the marsh at areas so avoid a slip and injury. Watch for that. The first 1.5-2 miles is fairly easy. A moderate hike at best. The last 1.5-2 miles is hard and nearly everyone you see will agree....so don’t feel compelled to go fast. Take lots of breaks, even if they are short ones. The trail was crazy busy and lots of people boasting it was their first but everyone was polite and allowed you to pass or was patient until you let them pass. Shortly after the “shoulder” area (tip: definitely stop and have a quick snack here it’s about to get real) the trail gets steep and then you head into rocks. If you have read all the reviews and blogs you’ll be ready for a rock scramble but let me tell you that doesn’t really start until the last quarter mile. Don’t be fooled! By then you are so close you almost forget how tired you are and you power through. Others say you can do this in tennis shoes but unless you are experienced or the most stable person ever I recommend hiking shoes for the traction. Drink lots of water. I drank 3 liters and had an extra for the walk down. Summit is busy (pick your head up to avoid being stuck in an awkward position on a rock when someone unexpectedly stops) and chilly but very worth it. What no one really tells you about your first though is that the hike down is almost as hard. Your legs are tired and you’ve just experienced the high of the summit and now you have to reengage all the tired muscles and your knees and stay upright. You goal now: getting to the bottom and taking off your shoes! Overall I did it in 6 hours with about 30-40 minutes at the summit and I was slow...or felt it...but was consistent and realistic. Thoroughly enjoyed being able to check this off the bucket list! I recommend starting early if you are new just so have the comfort of taking your time and still beating the storms.

    Mary Falcone completed Mount Bierstadt Trail

    6 months ago

    Mary Falcone reviewed Beaver Brook and Chavez Trail Loop

    7 months ago

    Well worth the trip but this hike is no joke. I went in Beaver Brook and out Chavez (note before Chavez intersects with Beaver Brook you will have to choose left/right on Braille trail take either...they lead to the same place). My Apple Watch clocked 4.7 miles and 1,000 calories burned but I went pretty slow (2 hours 40 mins). The first 2-3 miles is downhill and then uphill on the way out. Be ready for your legs to burn! There is lots of shade on both sides of this loop which is great. On Chavez there are lots of easy rock scrambles where the trail runs into big formations. I was glad I had my hiking shoes instead of tennis shoes, they would have been too slippery. Also, a couple times I wondered if I had veered off the trail. Stick with your gut and you’ll find you are going the right direction and see clear trail shortly after you start wondering. Lots of cars in the parking lot (I had to overflow park coming at 9:30 am) but the trail was pretty empty most of the trek so you still got solitude. Lots of butterflies today which was fun. Definitely a moderate hike and you will feel it. Make sure to conserve some water for the uphill part on the way out. Lots of places to stop and sit and rest though which was needed (for me at least!).

    Mary Falcone completed Parmalee Trail Loop

    about 1 year ago

    Mary Falcone reviewed Red Rocks and Morrison Slide Trails

    over 1 year ago

    Close to home and cell service the entire time were pluses. I'm glad I read the reviews and followed the pro tip left by someone else on taking the right (or upper) red rocks trails when coming off the Morrison Slide portion (when you go clockwise). Both the trails are labeled Ref Rocks trail and I would have guessed wrong had I not read that. Good mix of challenging rocky steep sections and flatter walker sections. I quite liked the hike. On the way out was warned by the great hikers of CO that there was a rattle snake just off the trail in a bush. Definitely freaked me out but folks were able to describe where it was and that it wasn't on the path or looking to strike so it was easy to get by (and noisy and made itself known!). Glad the hiking community sticks together and shares the info to keep hikers and dogs safe! Hope I don't run into another anytime soon. On the plus side though I now know exactly what one sounds like it real life!

    Mary Falcone reviewed Devil's Head Lookout Trail to Fire Tower

    over 1 year ago

    Great hike and a great workout. All uphill on the way to the fire post station. Many reviews say this is a quick easy hike but for a novice hiker this truly is moderate. There are plenty of places to rest though and the trail is wide enough to let people pass. The uphill is all worth it when you get the 360 degree views from the fire post. If you have a fear of heights beware this will freak you out, but do it and have a death grip on the railings because it's worth it! Went on a Saturday about 10:30 and parking was full so we parked in the overflow lot about a 1/2 mile from the trailhead. Added some extra walking but kept us from being blocked in by all the yahoo's who decided to just make their own parking and block the small road. Gravel road was passable in a sedan but pretty bumpy from time to time...probably because it's getting late in the season. Do this hike. You won't regret it!

    Mary Falcone completed Eagle's View Trail Loop

    over 1 year ago

    Mary Falcone completed Turkey Trot Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Mary Falcone completed Red Rocks Trading Post Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Mary Falcone completed Bear Lake Nature Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Mary Falcone completed Alberta Falls Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Mary Falcone completed Fountain Valley Loop Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Mary Falcone added To Do

    over 1 year ago

    Mary Falcone reviewed Lyons Overlook Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Easy hike to the overlook. Combine it with the longer attached trail around the overlook makes for a nice easy to moderate hike. Not a ton of shade on the longer path but enough. Pretty red rocks for half of the hike.

    Mary Falcone completed Lyons Overlook Trail

    over 1 year ago