Monday, January 20, 2014

Strawberry Hill and Old Stage Road 1/20/14

Used the holiday morning to revisit Strawberry Hill and use it as access to the closed Old Stage Road and hiked up it a few miles - maybe 6 miles total (21 for season).  Seems to be a good idea to try to walk Old Stage Road again before it reopens to full traffic.

very little traffic on the closed road - need a key to get past a gate, unless you're on foot, that is.

zoom in - Gold Camp Road tunnel I guess

new sign for Bear Trap

flabbergasted by the mudline on these trees from this fall's floods....

Saturday, January 11, 2014

FCNC Winter Bird Count 1/11/14

These are the only pictures I took this morning at the Fountain Creek Nature Center 26th (or was it 22nd - twenty-somethingth) Winter Bird Count.  Tyler asked me to lead area 7, the southern area of the park.  We had 26 species in our area, 46 overall for the count it looks like.  Good bird for our area was the Townsend's Solitaire.  Lots of good looks at Killdeer and Green-winged Teal.  Weather was great today.  Lots of damage from the floods but area was fine to get around.  The bird below is the American Kestrel - a very beautiful falcon!  

Friday, January 03, 2014

Mt. Cutler and Strawberry Hill 1/3/14

Met my friend Jenny to go up Mt. Cutler, a pretty easy 2 mile hike.  Afterward, explored Strawberry Hill.  To access Strawberry Hill, turn left away from the main entrance to N. Cheyenne Canyon instead of entering, park right in front of the Starr Kempf house, and look for trailhead just across Mesa Rd.  Hiked another 2-2.5 miles on Strawberry Hill - also denoted Old Hobo Trail and Old Penrose Trail on some maps. So, total about 5.5 (14.6 running total) miles.

View heading up Mt. Cutler.

S. Cheyenne Canyon, including Seven Falls.

Zooming in on Seven Falls - mostly frozen over now.

This amazing frozen waterfall was on Cheyenne Mtn. under the Old Stage Road.

Heading back down.

Starr Kempf sculptures on Evans. Ave.

Hairy Woodpecker as I start wandering around Strawberry Hill.

Some open areas down near the bottom.

Some nice secluded areas on the way up.  

Lots of ruts from bicycle use and flood damage.  This is flood damage.

The trail crests a hill and suddenly you arrive at Old Stage Rd. by the mailboxes.  I wonder when that will open again - and Seven Falls, too?

On the way back I took a turn left heading over closer to the S. Cheyenne Canyon and came across this very wide flood-damaged area.  

Heading back down.

Down back near Mesa and Evans.  I think the ditch is called Dixon Ditch.  Trees show some high water marks.

Thursday, January 02, 2014