Photo Journal & Trip Reports (Colorado)

Photo journals and trip reports from some of my outdoor photography adventures, starting with the most recent.

Categories:
Into the Black Canyon, Colorado
September-October 2020

With sheer walls towering over 2,000 vertical feet above the Gunnison River, there's no easy way to visit the bottom of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison; every possible hiking route is a steep, rugged scramble...

A Sunset and a Lion - San Juan Mountains, Colorado
October 2020

By mid-October all the aspen leaves have fallen and the color is gone from the mountains. Nevertheless, on Thursday afternoon last week, with clear air and a sky full of high clouds I decided spontaneously to go for a big hike to watch the sunset from the top of a 13,500 foot peak high above the town of Telluride...

Autumn Gold Rush in the San Juan Mountains, Colorado
September-October 2020

Walking through a grove of autumn aspens must be one of the most beautiful experiences that nature has to offer. Sunlight illuminates the golden leaves like a brilliant stained glass window in a cathedral of nature, like stepping into a colorful pointillist painting of Vincent van Gogh or Gustav Klimt...

At Home in the San Juans, Colorado
September 2020

In mid-September just a few days after getting back home to Ridgway, Colorado after my big trek around Glacier Peak in the Washington Cascades, I packed my backpack once more and headed up into the Sneffels Range for a quick overnight backpack trip...

Around Capitol and Snowmass - Elk Mountains, Colorado
August 2020

At the beginning of August we ventured into the beautiful Elk Mountains near Aspen, Colorado, for a 5-day backpack trek in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness circumnavigating Capitol Peak and Snowmass Mountain...

Columbines and Comets - San Juan Mountains, Colorado
July 2020

In mid July I ventured up to a 13,000-foot ridge to photograph Comet NEOWISE above the Sneffels Range, in the San Juan Mountains above Ouray, Colorado. Here are some photos from that evening, along with some additional photos from later in July...

Through the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness, Colorado
July 2020

This last week, in mid-July, we ventured out into the Sawatch Range for a 4-day, 25-mile, one-way shuttle trek through the southern bulk of the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness west of Buena Vista, Colorado...

Across the San Miguel Range, Colorado
July 2020

Over the 4th of July weekend, Claudia and I headed out into the Lizard Head Wilderness near Telluride, Colorado, for an adventurous 3-day backpack trek across the San Miguel Range. A week ago I did a solo backpack trip there near Lizard Head Peak, which got me thinking about a longer one-way shuttle trek route directly across and over the bulk of the range, starting from Lizard Head Pass on the southeast end of the range and ending at Woods Lake on the northeast side...

Hanging Around in the Lizard Head Wilderness, Colorado
June 2020

Last week I went out on a solo 3-day backpack trip into the Lizard Head Wilderness, which encompasses the San Miguel Range of the San Juan Mountains near Telluride, Colorado. With the below average snowpack this last spring, the alpine summer is slightly ahead of schedule and already by late June the wildflowers are starting to pop out on the high tundra...

Macey & Horn Lakes, Sangre de Cristos, Colorado
June 2020

In mid-June we drove over to the Sangre de Cristo Range in south-central Colorado for four days of backpacking in some new (to us) valleys along the eastern side of the range. As usual in June, there was less snow in the Sangres compared to most other Colorado mountain ranges, and it was great to get out for our first real multi-day alpine lake type of backpack trip this summer...

Gladstone High Camp - San Juans, Colorado
June 2020

Situated in the center of the San Miguel Range near Telluride, Colorado, Gladstone Peak (13,913 ft.) is overshadowed by its two popular neighboring fourteeners Wilson Peak and Mount Wilson. But Gladstone is an awesome peak with a dramatic pyramid shape, and in my opinion one of the more photogenic mountains of the San Juans...

Early Summer in the San Juans, Colorado
June 2020

Here in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado there's still snow lingering in the high peaks, as usual in June, so lately I've been doing a bunch of short backpack trips in the sub-alpine regions at or below treeline...

Spring in the San Juans, Colorado
May 2020

May is always a glorious month in the mountains of Colorado, when the freshly budded aspen forests have a brilliant green glow and snow has mostly melted off the trails but still lingers in the high peaks...

San Sophia High Camp - San Juans, Colorado
May 2020

It's pretty rare to be able to camp up high in Colorado. In the summer the threat of thunderstorms above treeline is too terrifying, and in the winter it's just too damn cold. But in mid-May I had a perfect window of opportunity to hike up and camp at 13,200 feet up on a high ridgeline here in the Sneffels Range of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado...

Rock, Rust, and Lichen - Ouray, Colorado
May 2020

Rock textures photographed while hiking in the mountains around Ouray, Colorado.

Canyons Close to Home, Southwest Colorado
April 2020

Yearning for some closer-to-home adventure this spring, we ventured out for a few quick overnight backpack trips to explore some canyon and desert areas along the Dolores and Gunnison Rivers, both major river drainages of the San Juan Mountains where we live in southwest Colorado...

Winter in the San Juans, Colorado
2019/2020

Here is a collection (in chronological order) of my favorite photos taken during the 2019/20 winter here in the San Juan Mountains of southwest Colorado.

From December through March, this was one of the best backcountry splitboarding seasons in memory here in the San Juans...

Autumn in the San Juans, Colorado
October 2019

The fall colors in the San Juan Mountains have been beautiful this season, though the persistent clear blue skies have put somewhat of a damper on the photographic potential. But it's always glorious to walk through colorful aspen groves regardless of the weather, and we did have a few short windows of more interesting skies and light to enjoy...

Roaming the Uncompaghre Wilderness, Colorado
August 2019

During the first two weeks of August I revisited several of my favorite backpacking treks in the Uncompahgre Wilderness in the northern San Juan Mountains of Colorado, for a total of 8 days of hiking through a good portion of the wilderness...

High Above Ouray, Colorado
August 2019

Last night I camped up on a high ridgeline in the San Juan Mountains about 4,000 feet above Ouray, Colorado, and enjoyed a fantastic sunset and sunrise from my airy perch.

Summer Green in the San Juans, Colorado
July 2019

After the enormous winter of 2018-2019 in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado, by the end of July the snowpack has finally melted off enough to call it summertime in the alpine now. Last weekend we hiked a very pleasant three-day shuttle route through the vibrant green mountains west of Silverton...

Late Early Summer in the San Juans, Colorado
June-July 2019

Last year in the spring of 2018 I was talking about how that winter's meager snowpack had caused summer to arrive a full month early in May, and I was able to trek from Ouray to Telluride in mid-May when normally that would be a mid-June type of thing to do...

Through and Around the Great Sand Dunes, Colorado
June 2019

Eager to go backpacking while the mountains are still filled with snow, in early June we returned to the Great Sand Dunes in southern Colorado to trek for three days all the way through the dunefield then back around them...

Spring Skiing in the San Juan Mountains, Colorado
April-June 2019

If you've followed my blog for a while, you may wonder if I've given up on snowboarding since I haven't posted hardly any ski/snowboard photos this winter. Well, while I haven't been posting much, I have been out on the snow a lot this season, especially this spring!

2018-2019 was a winter to remember in Colorado, with roughly 160% of average snowpack by late winter...

Starlight on Sneffels, Colorado
June 2019

The winter of 2018-2019 in the San Juan Mountains has been one for the records books, with about 600% of average snowpack at the start of June. With all this beautiful snow in the mountains this spring, lately I've been having some hairbrained photo mission ideas - one of which was to hike up Mt...

A Snowy Sunrise in the San Juans, Colorado
May 2019

The exceptionally snowy winter in the San Juans keeps on going into May and our snowpack is currently 187% of average for this time of year! As I've been out splitboarding lately, I've been admiring all the peaks draped in thick snowpack, and thinking about how they'd look with colorful sunrise light...

Mount Hayden Backcountry Lodge, San Juans, Colorado
February 2019

This weekend we had a wonderful stay at Eric Johnson's Mount Hayden Backcountry Lodge. Located in Richmond Basin in a remote corner of the San Juan Mountains between Ouray and Telluride, the lodge is surrounded by a powder playground of skiable terrain...

Snowy Ice Lakes, Colorado
October 2018

With fresh snow in the San Juan Mountains and dreams of winter I couldn't resist heading up high for a quick early season winter camp at Ice Lakes Basin near Silverton. I got a little more than I bargained for with two feet of fresh powder and knee-deep postholing through a snowstorm up there! In the morning I was treated to some fiery light for a few moments at sunrise, for a different kind of autumn color...

8 Days in the Weminuche, San Juans, Colorado
August 2018

In mid-August Claudia and I backpacked for eight days into the Needle Mountains in the Weminuche Wilderness of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado. This was I think the sixth or seventh time I've done a week-long trek in this particular range, but I was still able to find some new routes to take and new places to camp and photograph along with some old favorites...

Grenadier Range, San Juans, Colorado
July 2018

In late July we went on a 6-day backpack trek in and around the rugged Grenadier Range in the Weminuche Wilderness of the central San Juan Mountains of Colorado. Along the way we scrambled up several 13ers, hiked over numerous high passes, and visited some gorgeous remote alpine lakes...

Hiking from Ouray to Telluride Around the Sneffels Range, Colorado
May 2018

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...

Autumn Aspens on Kebler Pass, Colorado
October 2017

Kebler Pass is easily my favorite place to enjoy the aspens in Colorado, with the largest continuous mature aspen fields in the state and perhaps the world. This October was one of the stranger autumns transitions I've seen in Colorado; the aspens up on Kebler went from mostly green to peak gold in just a couple days, and a few days after that the color faded away...

Highlights from 2 Months of Backpacking in Colorado
August/September 2017

For all of August and September 2017, my wife and I lived out of our truck and tent while traveling around and backpacking in our great state of Colorado. We did over a dozen backpacking trips in various mountain ranges throughout the state, including the Flat Tops, Gore Range, Sawatch Range, San Juans, Sangre de Cristos, and Indian Peaks...

Autumn Backpacking in Northern Colorado
September 2017

In mid-to-late September we went on a bunch of short backpacking and camping trips in various central/north mountain ranges of Colorado, including the Sawatch Range, Gore Range, Indian Peaks, and Rocky Mountain National Park...

Crestone Needle & Humboldt, Sangre de Cristos, Colorado
September 2017

In late August/early September, we spent five days camped at South Colony Lakes in the Sangre de Cristo range in Colorado. Surrounded by three 14ers, including the rugged Crestone Needle towering directly overhead, this basin is supremely awesome -- one of the classic gems of Colorado...

Sunflowers in the Great Sand Dunes, Colorado
August 2017

While backpacking to South Zapata Lake for a night, we got a good view of the Great Sand Dunes and I could see vast fields of sunflowers all around and in the dunes. I took a mental note of where the largest sunflower fields were and the next day we hiked into the dunes towards these areas...

Quick Tour through the San Juans, Colorado
August 2017

In mid August we found ourselves drawn back to the San Juans like moths to a flame. We spent a few nights car camping up above Red Mountain Pass, drove eastward over four old mining road passes, then did a backpack trip intp Cataract Gulch near the 14er Sunshine Peak...

Hanging Around Huron Peak, Colorado
August 2017

In mid-August we backpacked around the headwaters of the South Fork Clear Creek near Huron Peak in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness and Sawatch Range of Colorado. The last time I hiked in this area was back in 2008, but this time we hiked the long way in here from the south from Taylor Park and Texas Creek, via the Continental Divide Trail and a high pass above Lake Ann...

Exploring the Holy Cross Wilderness, Colorado
August 2017

In early August we set out into the Holy Cross Wilderness (in the Sawatch Range of Colorado generally between Vail and Leadville) for a 3-night backpack trek. We spent our first night at the super popular Missouri Lakes then explored an off trail route over a high ridgeline to a remote and pristine lake where we spent the second day and night...

Mount Powell, Gore Range, Colorado
August 2017

In early August we backpacked into the rugged north end of the Gore Range and Eagles Nest Wilderness for three nights. We hiked the Upper Piney River Trail for while, branched off on a faint boot trail then camped the first night in the high basin below Mount Powell and Kneeknocker Pass...

Autumn Colors in Crested Butte, Colorado
September/October 2015

In September 2015 we made the move from Ouray to Crested Butte, and have been enjoying hiking the trails and savoring the golden autumn colors around here.  Here's some photos!

Wetterhorn Ski Mission, San Juans, Colorado
April 2015

Wetterhorn Peak stands above its surrounding basins like an ancient crumbling volcano. Rising to 14,015 feet, the pyramidal fourteener is not only one of the most photogenic mountains in Colorado, but its steep eastern face holds a classic ski descent that I’ve been wanting to snowboard for years...

Conundrum Hot Springs, Elk Mountains, Colorado
September 2014

There are few things in life finer than soaking in natural hot springs, especially when those hot springs are situated at treeline in an alpine basin surrounded by high peaks and valley vistas! Such is the case at Conundrum Hot Springs, a remote but popular wild hot springs in the Elk Mountains between the towns of Aspen and Crested Butte in Colorado...

Wildflower Trek, San Juan Mountains, Colorado
July 2014

Earlier this week Claudia and I backpacked for 5 days in the mountains west of Silverton, Colorado, following an improvised route that took us through numerous high alpine basins filled with endless fields of wildflowers...

Mt. Lindsey & Lily Lake, Sangre de Cristos, Colorado
June 2014

With our San Juans still covered in quite a bit of snow up high, earlier this week we drove east for 3 nights of backpacking in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains where the snow is mostly gone and summer backpacking season is well underway...

Great Sand Dunes Trek, Colorado
June 2014

The Great Sand Dunes in southern Colorado are perhaps the most unique landscape in the Rockies, with 700-foot tall sand dunes nestled at the foot of 13,000-foot mountains. Winds that blow across the vast San Luis Valley carry sand grains which become trapped by the towering Sangre de Cristo Mountains, and the streams that flow out of the mountains keep the sand in one place, resulting in the tallest dunes of North America...

2013-14 Winter in the San Juan Mountains, Colorado
Winter 2013-14

A collection of my favorite photos from the winter season of 2013-2014 in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado.

Winter Camping above Ouray, Colorado
February 2014

I headed out yesterday for a night of winter camping up on the “lower” Bridge of Heaven overlooking the town of Ouray, Colorado. I've winter camped up here once before five years previously, but this time I found a ridiculous spot to pitch my tent, right on the point of a precipitous rock outcropping! This airy perch provided a spectacular scene for tent photos, as well as an island of dry rock amongst the snow to cook and relax in ease...

Powderfest at the Fowler/Hilliard Hut, Colorado
January 2014

It had been snowing for nearly three weeks straight in the northern mountains of Colorado. With the northwest storm flow forecasted to dump a few more heavy punches before finally clearing out, last week I checked the 10th Mtn...

Winter Camping at Blue Lakes, Colorado
October 2013

Hungry for an adventure, on Tuesday I hiked up to Blue Lakes in the Sneffels Range to camp out in the snow. Late autumn can be a good time for winter camping – kind of like “diet” winter camping since there’s less snow to deal with and usually less avalanche danger (*depending, of course)...

Wetterhorn Peak, Colorado
June 2013

Unlike other mountain ranges in Colorado, the San Juan Mountains have a volcanic history. Around 35 million years ago this region was home to several dozen stratovolcanoes, similar to those in the present day Pacific Northwest...

Hiking Whitehouse Mountain, Colorado
June 2013

In mid-June we did a quick backpack trip and climbed up Whitehouse Mountain in the Sneffels Range of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado.

Summer is in full swing in the mountains! Except for a few lingering patches, most of the snow is gone and the tundra has come alive with its vibrant green grasses and early summer wildflowers like these Spreading Globeflowers (I think that’s what they are called)...

An Evening with Sneffels, Colorado
June 2013

On Saturday we ventured into the Sneffels Range in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado for a quick overnighter backpack trip. Taking advantage of a clear weather forecast, we camped all the way up at 12,900 feet on a high sub-peak of Sneffels...

2012-2013 Winter in Ouray, Colorado
Winter 2012-2013

A selection of skiing, landscape, and town photos in and around Ouray in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado during the 2012-2013 winter season.

Ski Hut Tour in the Gore Range, Colorado
March 2013

Last week we spent four days and three nights on a 10th Mountain Division ski hut tour in the southern Gore Range of Colorado! The first leg of our trip took us to the Jackal Hut, which is perched on a high ridge with expansive views towards Leadville and the highest peaks of Colorado in the Sawatch Range...

Colorado Fall Colors
September 2012

Photos of aspens and autumn color, mostly in the San Juan Mountains.  This fall was a very colorful one, with the aspens showing off much oranger and redder colors than usual.

Autumn on Stony Pass, San Juans, Colorado
September 2012

Desiring a leisurely change of pace after our recent tiring backpacking treks, Claudia and I decided to go car camping this weekend up on Stony Pass in the San Juan Mountains east of Silverton, Colorado...

The Lime Loop, San Juans, Colorado
September 2012

Over Labor Day weekend some friends joined us for a strenuous 3-day loop trek in the Weminuche Wilderness, south of the area we hiked through last week. Our route took us over a high ridgeline with spectacular views of the Needle Mountains on the other side of the valley...

The Wild Heart of the San Juans, Colorado
August 2012

Last week we went on another 7-day trek through the high peaks of the Weminuche Wilderness in the San Juan Mountains of southwest Colorado. During our backpacking trip we were treated not only to spectacular mountain vistas, but to some pretty cool wildlife encounters too!

Dunes and Sangres, Colorado
June 2012

This last weekend we went on a little road trip to the Great Sand Dunes of Colorado, followed by a couple nights of camping and hiking in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. We arrived at the dunes in the afternoon on Friday and started the hike into the dunes under a sky full of wild ominous clouds, along with sandblasting winds...

Supermoon on Sneffels, Colorado
May 2012

I’ve been itching for an adventure lately, so early this morning I hiked up Mt. Sneffels in the moonlight again! I left Ouray at 1:30am (ouch!) and started hiking into Yankee Boy Basin at 2:30am. The “supermoon” – aka, the full moon at its closest orbit to Earth – was incredibly bright, and I had no troubles finding my way without headlamp...

Weminuche High Loop, Colorado
August 2011

In late August we did a 7-day loop trek in and around the Needle Mountains, the rugged heart of the Weminuche Wilderness in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado. This was the fourth time I've done a week-long backpack trip in these mountains, and as usual we had some crazy weather during our trip, including lots of lightning, thunder, and several stunning sunrises and sunsets...

Maroon Bells Four Pass Loop, Colorado
July 2011

In late July we spent 6 days backpacking around the famous Maroon Bells in the Elk Mountains of Colorado. The photos pretty much tell the story so I won’t say too much else except that it was another great trek in Colorado!

Wetterhorn / Uncompahgre Loop Trek, Colorado
July 2011

Last week Claudia and I went on a 5-day backpacking loop in the Uncompahgre Wilderness in the San Juan Mountains east of Ouray. Our route circumnavigated the fourteeners Wetterhorn and Uncompahgre Peaks and took us through a paradise of expansive green tundra, wildflowers, and peaks...

A Night in the Great Sand Dunes, Colorado
June 2011

On Monday I headed to the Great Sand Dunes for a quick overnighter. I hiked in at about 10pm, slept on a dune for about 4 hours, then woke up around 3:30am to shoot the setting (nearly full) moon, followed by sunrise...

Epic Spring Ski Season in Western Colorado
May/June 2011

With record-breaking snowfalls in April, continuing well in May, the spring ski season in the San Juans was a memorable one.  May surprised us with several long snow storms that brought mid-winter-esque powder days and smiles all around! Here is a collection of my favorite ski photos from May and June...

Colorado Fall Colors
September/October 2010

Photos of colorful aspens in the San Juans and Elk Mountains of Colorado, during the autumn of 2010.

Capitol Peak, Colorado
September 2010

In late September I spent four days doing various hikes around Capitol Peak, a rugged fourteener in the Elk Mountains of Colorado.

Ouray/Uncompahgre Loop, Colorado
August 2010

This last weekend we repeated one of my favorite backpacking routes - a loop hike starting from the Bear Creek trailhead near Ouray, up through the rolling tundra of the Uncompahgre Wilderness, then back down into the town of Ouray via the Bridge of Heaven...

Sunset Atop Mt. Sneffels, Colorado
August 2010

After climbing the southwest ridge route of Mt. Sneffels on an afternoon when the clouds weren't too threatening, we stayed up on the summit to watch and photograph the sunset.  We then descended the normal route in the dark with headlamps and walked back to my truck where cold beers awaited...

Weminuche Wilderness Trek, Colorado
August 2010

During the second of week of this August 2010, Claudia and I went backpacking for 7 days in the Weminuche Wilderness, duplicating the same route that I did solo back in September 2007. 

We had all kinds of crazy weather during the trek, ranging from torrential monsoons to perfect bluebird days...

Blue Lakes, San Juans, Colorado
August 2010

Photos from three days of summer camping at Blue Lakes, in the Sneffels Range of the San Juan Mountains, Colorado.

Sunrise on Wetterhorn Peak, Colorado
July 2010

On Sunday I hiked into Wetterhorn Basin, in the Uncompahgre Wilderness east of Ridgway, Colorado. With all the stormy monsoon weather and fantastic sunsets we’ve been having in the San Juans lately, I had hopes of catching another great sunset in the mountains...

Ice Lakes Basin, San Juans, Colorado
July 2010

This weekend I went on an overnight backpacking trip to Ice Lakes Basin, in the San Juans of Colorado, along with a fellow photographer and about 200-300 other hikers. I’ve never seen so many people in the San Juans! I guess this is the “go to” place around here now...

Wandering in the Weminuche, Colorado
July 2010

After another fun 4th of July in Ouray, I went on a 5-day backpacking loop in the Weminuche Wilderness in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado.  I left from the Beartown trailhead, hiked south along the Continental Divide Trail for a couple days until reaching the area of Flint Lakes and Rock Lake...

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, near Silverton, Colorado. This spectacular basin is a popular location for summertime hiking, but not many people visit in the snow...

Lightning Disco at Blue Lakes, Colorado
September 2009

On Saturday I hiked up to Blue Lakes for a quick overnight backpacking trip in the Sneffels Range of southwest Colorado's San Juan Mountains. The alpine tundra has turned a beautiful array of autumn colors, and even a few aspens are starting to change...

South Colony Lakes, Colorado
June 2009

This weekend I went on a little road trip to the Sangre de Cristo Mountains near Westcliffe, Colorado, to meet up with a friend for some camping and hiking around South Colony Lakes. The lakes are situated at the foot of three 14ers, making them a perfect basecamp for several days worth of hiking...

Bridge of Heaven Winter Camp - Ouray, Colorado
April 2009

Over the last few days, a late season storm has come through the San Juans in Colorado, dumping almost 2 feet of snow.  On Sunday, while still snowing hard outside the weather forecast called for a sunny clear Monday, so I headed out for a spur-of-the-moment winter backpacking trip, hoping to get a photo of the fresh snow smothering Ouray and the Uncompahgre Gorge...

2009 Skiing & Snowboarding in the San Juans, Colorado
Winter 2009

My favorite shots from our backcountry skiing and snowboarding adventures during the 2009 winter and spring, in the San Juan Mountains, near Ouray, Colorado.

Great Sand Dunes Megaloop, Colorado
March 2009

In mid-March I was desperate for some wilderness action, so I headed out on a backpacking trip in the Great Sand Dunes in southern Colorado. My initial plan was to do a simple three day hike up and back the Sand Ramp Trail along the eastern side of the dunes...

Hideout Cabin, San Juans
January 2009

This weekend I joined some friends for a three day weekend up at their backcountry cabin in the San Juan Mountains south of Telluride, Colorado. The cabin’s a real gem, situated in a rugged San Juan setting surrounded by prime ski terrain...

Red Mountain, San Juans, Colorado
September 2008

Today I drove up Red Mountain Pass (above Ouray, Colorado) to check out the golden aspens, and then ended up hiking up Red Mountain #3 to watch the sunset from up top.

Weminuche Wilderness Loop, Colorado
August 2008

For 7 days in August, I hiked a high loop route through the high and rugged Needle Mountains in the Weminuche Wilderness in the San Juans south of Silverton, Colorado. This trip had a couple unexpected events in store for me, but fortunately, Lady Luck was really by my side this time...

Continental Divide Trail through the South San Juans, Colorado
August 2008

This last week I hiked the Continental Divide Trail (CDT) through the South San Juan Wilderness with two of my friends. It’s a 60+ mile trek from Cumbres Pass near Chama, New Mexico to Wolf Creek Pass near Pagosa Springs, Colorado...

Ouray-Uncompahgre Loop, Colorado
July 2008

This weekend I went on a wonderful 25 mile backpacking loop from Ouray, Colorado. I started at Bear Creek, a few miles up the road from Ouray, hiked up to the rolling green tundra paradise of the Uncompahgre Wilderness, along the Horsethief Trail to the Bridge of Heaven Trail, then back down into Ouray...

Cow Creek Bushwhack, San Juans, Colorado
July 2008

During the last three days, I bushwhacked through the Cow Creek valley, a rugged and remote mountain valley in the Uncompahgre Wilderness of the San Juan Mountains east of Ridgway. My original plan was to hike through the valley and continue up to the high alpine zone, where I would hike a high loop route around to Wetterhorn Basin and then take a trail back to my truck...

2 Sunrises on Mount Sneffels, Colorado
June 2008

This June I made two early morning hikes high up in Yankee Boy Basin, a high mountain valley above Ouray, Colorado.

On Monday I woke up at 2am, drove up to Yankee Boy Basin, and hiked in the dark via headlamp up to the ridgeline of Cirque Mountain, a 13-thousand footer with a nice view of neighboring Mount Sneffels...

2008 Skiing & Snowboarding in Colorado
Winter/Spring 2008

The 2007-2008 snow season has been an epic one, with record breaking snowfalls in western Colorado. The town of Ouray (where I live) got over 21 feet of snow, more than twice the average, and the most in 60 years of records! The high mountains probably got twice that, if not more...

Winter Camping in the West Needle Mountains, Colorado
March 2008

Lured by a full moon and a forecast of clear skies, in late March I went backpacking for two nights in the West Needle Mountains in the San Juans near Silverton, Colorado. This area is incredibly photogenic; from my campsite on a 12,200 ft ridgeline, I enjoyed broad vistas of the Needle Mountains, the West Needles, and all the peaks of the Molas Pass area...

Colorado Fall Colors
September/October 2007

Autumn is probably the most spectacular season in the Colorado Rockies, as the vast fields of aspens turn bright yellow and orange under snowcapped mountain peaks. For the last several weeks, I've been searching for grand aspen vistas to photograph, mainly in the West Elk Mountains near Crested Butte, and San Juan Mountains around Telluride and Ouray...

Weminuche Wilderness Trek, Colorado
September 2007

Over a span of 7 days in late August/early September, I hiked alone through a high route in the Weminuche Wilderness of the San Juans. The mountains here are perhaps the most rugged and remote in all of Colorado...

Maroon Bells Four Pass Loop, Colorado
July 2007

This popular hike in the Elk Mountains near Aspen is referred to as the Four Pass Loop. It is about 25 miles long, and passes over four high mountain passes, circumnavigating the famous Maroon Bells fourteeners...

Spring Riding in the San Juans, Colorado
April/May 2007

Instead of making separate trip reports for each spring backcountry hike and ski/snowboard trip that my friends and I do, I thought I'd just make a page with some of my favorite pictures from various hikes this spring in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado...

Spring Descents in Colorado
April/May 2006

Here are some photos from springtime backcountry snowboarding in the Front Range, Gore Range, and Sawatch Range of Colorado during the 2006 season.

Mount of the Holy Cross, Colorado
October 2003

Notch Mountain, in the Sawatch Range just south of Vail, Colorado, has a perfect front-and-center view of Mount of the Holy Cross and its east facing cross couloir, made famous in 1873 by legendary wilderness photographer William H...