The towns of Ouray and Telluride in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado are only 10 miles apart as the crow flies, but are separated by the rugged Sneffels Range. In the summertime it's possible to hike, run, bike, or even drive 17 miles over 13,114 ft. Imogene Pass between the two towns, but in the spring this route is still covered in snow - even after a low snow season like this last winter. With a disturbing 20% of average winter snowpack in the San Juans this year, the trails below treeline are almost completely snow-free and it looks more like mid-June than mid-May. I realized it would be possible to do a backpack trip all the way around the Sneffels Range from Ouray to Telluride the long way!
So this last weekend in mid-May I hiked almost 50 miles over three days from Ouray to Telluride, via the Oak Creek Trail, Twin Peaks Trail, Silvershield Trail, Corbett Canyon Trail, Dallas Trail, Alder Creek Trail, Last Dollar Road, and Deep Creek Trail. Below are a few highlight photos from this adventure!