100 Days of Hiking: Frequently Asked Questions

Earlier this summer I had a goal. It was to see if I could hike every day for 100 consecutive days. The hikes didn't have to be long or amazing. My goal was simply to see if I could do something every day for 100 days. Since we're in the business of writing trail guides, it only seemed natural to hike. Well, our 100 days have ended. I've found myself replying to emails, messages and answering questions about our experiences on the trails this summer. So, I thought I'd answer a few on the blog today. 1.) How many miles…

The Trek To Swastika Lake

There's a hard way, and an easy way--but we usually accidentally take the hard way. You see, we have these friends who we like to explore with but we have to be prepared for the unexpected when we hike with them. Together we've skied through a blizzard in the dark, almost lost children in a gigantic mud puddles, and now we can say that we've trudged straight up a mountain over piles of deadfall together. Actually they are awesome and every time we hike, ski, or snowshoe together is memorable...literally. So, a few months ago we snowshoed together into a charming little place…

Kennaday Peak Fire Lookout

Are you into visiting mountain peaks with grand sweeping views but aren't interested in walking up hill? Kennaday Peak my interest you because you can drive all the way to the top. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CbBYAlESbPM Kennaday Peak is located in the northwest portion of the Snowy Range at an altitude of 10,810 feet and has some incredible views of the surrounding area. Some of the highlights are Barrett Ridge to the south, the Platte River Valley to the west, Pennock Mountain and Elk Mountain to the north and of course Medicine Bow Peak to the east.     [caption id="attachment_2517" align="alignleft" width="150"]…

Tie Camp along North French Creek

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w8sfA75hKqY There is a place in the big meadow on the north end of the Tie Hack Trail where you can just barely see one of the log walls of a cabin. And to be honest, it's hard to be certain that it is a log wall until you start making your way toward it. When you get close you'll realize this is not just a cabin but an old Tie Hack Camp. This is a great site, I counted the remains of seven separate buildings. While none of them have anything left that resembles a roof most have significant portions…

Fire Lookout on Medicine Bow Peak

In the not so distant past there was a fire lookout station on top of Medicine Bow Peak. It was perched right up on the 12,013 foot summit. [caption id="attachment_2321" align="alignleft" width="150"] Taken by W.C. Alden in 1925, part of the USGS Photographic Library[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2320" align="alignleft" width="150"] Similar shot taken in 2012[/caption] It was first established in 1904 and the first lookout was Fred Miller. The Forest Service built the lookout on the summit but Fred built for himself a cabin near lookout lake and a smaller stone shelter on the summit ridge line near the lowest point between…

The Clark Peak Yurt

Last weekend we stayed in a yurt in Colorado State Forest State Park. While we like camping we also like sleeping on beds and the Clark Peak Yurt combined the luxury of sleeping on a bed with all the fun of camping. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=prqNgWwaSSA&feature=player_embedded Our weekend began late Friday afternoon with a rush to pack and get to the yurt before dark.  Following written directions and relying zen navigation we made it to the yurt just as the sun set and right before a light rainfall. Al quickly went to work unloading the car and doing manly things like building a…

Lake Marie Waterfall

The Lake Marie Waterfall is super easy to get too.  It's right off Wyoming Highway 130 and you don't even have to get off the pavement if you don't want to. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QV97xxxmEgw Lake Marie is named after Mary Bellamy who was in the first graduating class of Laramie High School.  Among many accomplishments in her life, she was the first woman elected to the Wyoming State Legislature in 1910. [caption id="attachment_1953" align="alignleft" width="300"] Lake Marie from the Medicine Bow Peak Trail[/caption] The lake is very popular for fishing, climbing Medicine Bow Peak, or relaxing in the beauty of the Snowy…

Old Cabin Near Quealy Lake Trail

We love old log cabins around these parts. These two are certainly unique. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FJAziL_SAs You first catch a glimpse of these cabins about half way through a wide meadow just South of Quealy Lake on the West side of Medicine Bow Peak. One of the cabins is in pretty good shape. My favorite feature is covered front porch.  Even in its current condition, it is still better than anything I could put on my house. The second cabin is in much worse shape. I'm sure it's foreshadowing the fate of its partner as  each winter takes it's toll. [caption id="attachment_1722"…

Falls Below Reservoir Lake

This is one of those out of the way gems.  Not many people come to Reservoir Lake to begin with and since this water fall is off the trail (just a little) not many people get to appreciate it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B4kHJOBdCZY Reservoir Lake sits at about 10,800 feet above sea level and it catches the runoff from the North end of the ridge that makes Medicine Bow Peak. Quealy Lake Trail is the only trail that will get you here.  While walking near the North end of the lake the trail crosses the point where the water drains and flows down…