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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Eldora Mountain Resort- #1 (Nederland, CO) 10/16/2012

I'll be doing quite a few posts on Eldora Ski Resort because I received a season pass on the cheap. Before this, I skied in West, VA (Snowshoe, which was actually pretty nice), North Carolina (App Ski Mountain) and Dubai (Ski Dubai indoor skiing). Those were not the most challenging of locations so it was ideal for learning. Eldora is where we are continuing along our learning curve. I plan on honing my skiing/boarding skills so next year I'm ready for some killer shredding next season at the big resorts on the western slope.

The photos for this post were taken on the first day of the season. Obviously, the snowfall isn't coming down in any great amount. I'm not sure if the snow season hasn't kicked in or what. The only available runs open for this first day were "International" and "Hornblower." I believe this was a 20" base.

So, when I first told people what I was doing for the day, I got a lot of "Eldora sucks" and this and that. To be honest though, I really did not care. Naomi and I got sick deals on our passes and we felt it was ideal for a couple of East Coasters just getting our ski boots wet, especially her.

Okay, so the actual review.... The staff was really friendly. No one treated us like assholes and everyone scanning our passes at the lifts were polite. The ski patrol was really nice... I mean, really, really nice. Naomi had a couple nasty yard sales (If you don't know what a "yard sale" is, click this 8-second video) and they were always there to help pick up poles, get her footing, or just ask if we were okay. Naomi is a beginner, so she probably shouldn't have been on these runs, but in her defense, she crept down the mountain at a safe speed and was not a danger to anyone else around.

The man-made snow and grooming isn't all that bad. I suppose if you're a pro and you've been tearing up slopes all across the Western US, then this wont be that special to you. However, if you're around Boulder or Northern Colorado this isn't that far a drive for you. I was told by a local that it is a perfect place to get up a little early on powder days and go tear it up between 9-noon.

Next trip will be strictly snowboarding.

Shoutout to and r/snowboarding

About 5 miles away. Dirty ass Subaru.

Looks better in person, obviously.

Naomi coming down "International"

Who needs carving skis? Straight-edge HEADs and boots from circa 1990. 
Going up lift photo 1

Going up lift photo 2

View from top of Challenge/Cannonball lifts when you get off and look right

Monday, November 19, 2012

Lory State Park- (Westridge, Howard, Mill Creek Link) 11/15/2012

Started out at green star (parking lot at very end of Lory) 1. Arthur's Rock Trail 3. Portion of Timber Trail 5. Westridge Trail. 11. Howard Trail (where I took my fall) 9. Mill Creek Link

Location: Lory State Park (Westridge trail via Arthur's Rock/Timber trail, then Howard and Mill Creek Link) Bellvue, CO. 
Date: 11/15/2012
How far we went: ?? Lost track due to injury (see below)**
How long it took us: About 2 or 3 hours depending on pace.
Elevation reached: ?? Lost track of this too
Weather: A little chilly, very sunny. 

Another sunny day in Colorado. I was curious to see what the Westridge trail was so I went up via Arthur's Rock and took a left at the sign designated for Timber trail and followed that to my destination. It's the only place (I believe) at Lory where you have an unobstructed view of Longs Peak and the Continental Divide. I was in too much of a hurry on the Howard Trail (#11 above) and I tripped and took a hard fall sliding down the trail. Both hands, both arms, and my right leg all had some good damage. Luckily, I had some alcohol based wipes in my bookbag that day and was able to clean my wounds (there was a LOT of dirt in my cuts/skin.) I took a second to get cleaned up then I calmly proceeded to the bottom and home where I was able to better deal with it. I wasn't hurt bad though.. Either way, awesome trail. Don't be surprised if you see some daredevil mountain bikers on Howard. Pretty awesome to see them in action. 

Where you need to go left if you come up Arthur's Rock Trail.

Walking along Timber trail.

Walking along Westridge, take a turn to your right and you see the view.....

.... The view that my camera cannot give justice to. 

View of Arthur's rock from Westridge

Only shot I got of Howard trail before I tripped


Horsetooth Mountain- Part I, 10/15/2012

Location: Horsetooth Rock (Horsetooth Rock Trail to Horsetooth Rock, then on Walthen to Spring Creek Trail, then to Horsetooth Falls trail back to parking lot.)
Date: 10/15/2012
How far we went: 6.88 miles
How long it took us: 3:02:52
Elevation reached: 7256
Weather: A little chilly, very sunny. Wind at the top of the rock. 

Basically you pay $5 and until noon the next day you have a permit to explore this beautiful area (within operating hours). Horsetooth Rock is the most recognizable landmark from Fort Collins and is easily accessible via the Horsetooth Rock Trail. Everything is clearly marked and you'll find your way to the top easily. Note: It takes about an hour to an hour and a half (depending on your pace) to go from parking lot to summit. This is important if you plan on catching a sunrise. It is only challenging when you get to the actual rock and takes some scrambling to reach the very top. It's not so hard that the average hiker/athlete/nimble person cannot do it with minimal effort, but people have lost their lives up here and I personally know a bunch of people who could not do it. Moving along on the Walthen and connecting with Spring Creek Trail. Its not much of a  sight if its not late Spring and the water is not flowing. Still worth a visit any time of year. Residents of Fort Collins are lucky to have this in their backyard.
Starting off

Coming to base of rock
Sitting on top of rock... Can you spot my new friend? 
Looking west towards continental divide
Looking South Towards Denver
East towards Fort Collins

North to Wyoming

Moving away from rock on Walthen trail
On to Spring Creek
Drips coming down Horsetooth Falls