Saturday, June 30, 2012

El Jebel

My leg is still in a splint, so my participation in things is limited, so I'll show you a little of what I have been able to do, and some of what I've missed.

There are 30+ RVs parked in a lot behind the park 'n ride for the bus stop.  The bus service is good  here, and this makes it very convenient for many of our activities.

About 2 blocks away is where we have been congregating in the late afternoons for happy hour.  Besides the $1 drinks, they have great food.

Our group sort of takes over the place, but we sure have lots of fun.

One day the group visited Maroon Bells, said to be one of the most photographed mountains in Colorado.
The Maroon Bells are in the background, as is Maroon Lake.
About 20+ came up for the trip, and just about everyone hiked either back to the source of Maroon Lake, which was a waterfall, or they hiked up to Crater Lake, about 1.5 miles further up the mountain.  I brought a book and sat down by the lake and read and enjoyed the wonderful scenery.

The Maroon Bells without us cluttering up the scenery.  

You can easily identify the avalanche areas.
The only way to get to Maroon Bells is by bus.  You can drive to Aspen Highlands, but even from there it is an 8 mile bus ride.  The drivers provide a narrative of the history of the area, along with much geographical information.  I thought the bus ride was well worth the trip, the scenery was just the icing on the cake.

Yellow-bellied marmots are quite common in the area, and this young one even posed for me.

On the bus ride back we have the "hear no evil, speak no evil and see no evil".

Now for some of what I didn't get to do, kayaking down the Roaring Fork River.

There were about 24 kayaks that started, but 2 flipped over immediately, and one of those decided not to kayak on this particular day.

The outfitters and locals had indicated the river was low and would probably not be real exciting, and there would be lots of portaging over the rocks.  Well, that wasn't what the group found.  It was six miles of fast water, with only about 100 feet of slow moving water, and many class 2, and someone was told later, even a class 3 rapid along the route.

Out of the 20+ who started only 6 made it down the entire trip without ending up like this.  And some ended up like this several times.

Even if you kept the right side up, the waves splashed into the kayaks and everyone had to stop and bail water.  Usually our water guns are for water fights on the river, but they also do double duty for bailing the water out of the kayaks.
And a note, 7 of the ladies decided about half-way down, they were ready to quit.  So they hauled their kayaks up the bank and left them there to be picked up later.  Marvin had taken gps coordinates, so he knew where to return for them.  The ladies then walked about a mile to the Walmart and the bus stop, where they caught the bus and arrived back at camp only about 30 minutes before the rest of the kayakers.

The group who kayaked the entire 6 miles.

Later in the evening was a concert at the base of Snowmass Mountain.

Firefall was the band.  Originally from the Boulder area back in the 1970s, their biggest hit was  "You are the Woman".  It was too bad it got rained out and had to end early, it was a great concert.

My next blog will be on Marble and the Crystal Mill.

1 comment:

Barbara and Ron said...

It looks like you were lucky to miss that kayak trip. Didn't anybody remember what happened the last time they kayaked the Roaring Fork? Even Ron flipped.