Trip Reports: Icy Ice Lakes Basin, Colorado - November 2009

The light snowfalls amounts in the San Juan Mountains this November provided a good opportunity for me to do a quick overnight backpacking trip to Ice Lakes Basin.  This spectacular basin is a popular location for summertime hiking, but not many people visit in the snow.
lunar alpenglow, moonlight, Ice Lakes Basin, Colorado, alpenglow, stars, photo

Lunar Alpenglow

Ice Lakes Basin, Colorado

The rising moon casts lunar alpenglow on the peaks of Ice Lakes Basin in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado on this chilly November night.  The 30-second, high ISO exposure enhanced the light and stars beyond what our eyes could see. Photo © copyright by Jack Brauer.

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Ice Lakes Basin, San Juan Mountains, Colorado, tent, winter, photo

Ice Lakes Winter Tent

San Juan Mountains, Colorado

Here’s the obligatory illuminated tent shot! Even though I was warm and cozy inside in my -30º sleeping bag, I hardly slept a wink due to the erratic gusty winds all night. The wind must have been coming in pulses, or else it was swirling around like mad in the basin, because it would be calm and quiet, then a blast of wind would pound my tent, over and over again every 30 seconds or so for the whole night. I knew the tent was fine, but still the noise was disconcerting enough to keep up awake most of the night. Photo © copyright by Jack Brauer.

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Ice Lakes Basin, sunrise, San Juan Mountains, Colorado, photo

Icy Ice Lakes Sunrise

San Juan Mountains, Colorado

A gorgeous sunrise over snowy Ice Lakes Basin, November. Photo © copyright by Jack Brauer.

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Ice Lakes, San Juan Mountains, Colorado, bluebird, October, snow, lake, blue, Golden Horn, photo

Bluebird at Ice Lakes

San Juan Mountains, Colorado

Golden Horn (13,769 ft.) reflection in Ice Lake on a gorgeous calm bluebird October morning after a two-day storm - the second snowfall of the season. Photo © copyright by Jack Brauer.

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