Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Day 23: Camp Near Vasquez Peak to Berthoud Pass (Highway 40)

A cold, damp fog settled over our camp in the night. We hiked into the mist. At times visibility was limited to the next tree or the next bend in the trail. 

The fog burned off in an hour or two, and we enjoyed mild, sunny weather. As we started the climb up Stanley Mountain (aka Not So Flat Stanley), we noticed someone hiking behind us: Stride!  Smiles was not far behind, and the four of us stopped for a long break together when we reached the top of the mountain. 

Our hike continued along the ridgetop. We hiked through beautiful grassy meadows sprinkled with purple and gold wildflowers. Our trail stayed high (above 12,000 feet) for a few miles, giving us incredible views of the snowy mountains surrounding us. 

We knew we were nearing Berthoud Pass at Highway 40 when we met a group of day hikers on their way to climb Mount Stanley. After a quick descent to the pass, we parted company with Stride and Smiles. They hiked the shorter Silverthorne Alternate, so they will be hiking on to Grand Lake before resupplying. We will be heading into Winter Park to resupply, and will set out for Grand Lake in the morning.  

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