Friday, July 31, 2015

High Mesa to the Top Of The World! 7.25.15

On this day I had the rare treat to have my wife Joann join me on a hike.  I promised that this one was fairly flat and the views would be worth any effort expended.  She doesn't always believe me when I say that though.  Maybe it's our varied definitions of "fairly flat".  But, this one is really fairly flat.  It begins at the very end of the High Mesa Road.  The trail follows an old logging road for about 3 miles where it crosses a motorcycle trail up over High Mesa.  It's easiest to then follow the MC trail out to the edge of the mountain and turn left (south) and then hike on up to the high point - that's the Top of the World.  That last hitch is fairly straight up, but it's not far.  The views are stunning, as you'll soon see.

Panorama from Top of the World.  Views of Silverjack Reservoir, Cimarron West Fork, Middle Fork ,and East Fork.  Heaven just has to be only a stone's throw away!

View up the Cimarron East Fork.  That's Uncompahgre Peak at the end of the valley - I've been to the foot of it on a couple sides.  I need to get up there!  It's the highest point in the San Juan Mountains.

Trees don't last long up here, there's just too much wind.  But, on this day it was unusually pleasant, only a breeze.

Some old mountain goat.

The west side of Sheep Mountain is gnarly!  I'd love to see how that was created.

Shrooms - I doubt they are edible.  Joann thought they were "cute".

Trees, trees, and more trees - some extremely tall for this country!  What fun to watch them sway in the breeze.

I wonder what a moose was doing up this high?  She probably was avoiding the "city" below in the Silverjack area and the Little Cimarron.  From above, it literally looked like a city of campers, motorhomes, etc.  I'm glad I was up here too - above that mess.

View of Sheep Mountain just after leaving the trail head.  This is why I hike.  These views are tucked away all over these San Juan mountains.

Looking down on Silverjack Reservoir and the city of campers.

View up the Cimarron East fork.  The middle fork is in the far right of the picture.  The brown area in the lower left is the East Fork fire site from a couple years ago.

Gopro camera setup taking a timelapse.  

Lady on a Rock (Joann) - upper right.  The Sneffels Range is in the far background, above and beyond Owl Creek Pass.

Cottontail rabbits were all over the road on the way out.  I don't know what attracted them to the road, but we'd come around a corner and see 8 or 10 of them out on the road.  What a wonderful day in God's great outdoors with the love of my life!