Days 41-43: Colorado

Hello from Northern Colorado! I’ve spent the last few days climbing mountain passes and circumventing mountain ranges, making my way from southern CO all the way through the state to the northern reaches. Over the last few days I’ve gotten to know these Rocky Mountains pretty well, and I’ve realized there is so much more I have to see here. These particular mountains here in CO are different than any other ranges I’ve seen so far across the western U.S. The mountain ranges here are full of tall (14,000+ ft) peaks, but just driving by these ranges you’d miss seeing half those peaks. The reason for that is the tallest mountains here are sometimes hidden and engulfed by slightly smaller mountains as well as an intricate network of raging rivers and deep canyons. I feel like to see the true natural beauty of Colorado, you would need to break out the backpack. There just seems to be a whole different world up in these high mountain ranges that no car or permanent mark of civilization can reach. The ruggedness of this state is something I didn’t expect before coming here; but looking back, how could there be 53 different 14,000 feet peaks without insane rivers, smaller ranges, and deep canyons coming down from them? This state is full of natural wonders, and is still forming new ones through the constant power of water and ice. From the highest mountains in the lower 48, to 1000 foot deep canyons, to the headwaters of some of this country’s major rivers; Colorado has got it all it seems.

-Warren

P.S.: New website, http://www.warrenhylton.com! I’ve got this blog, my photo gallery, and soon a print store all on that website; so feel free to give it a look.

Pictures from Days 41-43:

In a narrow valley surrounded by ice covered mountains, lays the small town of Ophir. What an incredible place to call home.

In a narrow valley surrounded by ice covered mountains, lays the small town of Ophir. What an incredible place to call home.

Colorado is a geologist's dream come true.

Colorado is a geologist’s dream come true.

The pass coming out of Telluride CO going over into the next valley where Ophir is located.

The pass coming out of Telluride CO going over into the next valley where Ophir is located.

One view of the Rockies.

One view of the Rockies.

This is what 2 million years of water erosion will do. Black Canyon National Park

This is what 2 million years of water erosion will do. Black Canyon National Park

Another view of Black Rock Canyon National Park.

Another view of Black Rock Canyon National Park.

This is where I camped one night.  A meadow in the middle of Gunnison National Forest.

This is where I camped one night. A meadow in the middle of Gunnison National Forest.

Tall mountains surrounded by smaller mountains.

Tall mountains surrounded by smaller mountains.

Sunset over CO. Rocky Mountain National Park in the back right.

Sunset over CO. Rocky Mountain National Park in the back right.

Sunrise at 6:30 AM. Can't think of a better way to start the day.

Sunrise at 6:30 AM. Can’t think of a better way to start the day.

Lake Granby is a huge lake surrounded by mountains. Beautiful place.

Lake Granby is a huge lake surrounded by mountains. Beautiful place.

Another shot of the lake with some of the surrounding mountains.

Another shot of the lake with some of the surrounding mountains.

The whole lake was surrounded with massive mountains like this.

The whole lake was surrounded with massive mountains like this.

A meadow in Rocky Mountain National Park.

A meadow in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Mt. Bowen. The area surrounded this mountain is protected wilderness, meaning no roads or signs of humanity.

Mt. Bowen. The area surrounded this mountain is protected wilderness, meaning no roads or signs of humanity.

A partially frozen creek in Rocky Mountain National Park.

A partially frozen creek in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Rocky Mountain National Park.

Rocky Mountain National Park.

 

Days 31-32: North Cascades Mountains

These mountains and forests are doing well in keeping me occupied. The more time I spend in a particular area, the more I see within the surrounding woods. It’s very easy to quickly get lost in the depth of all the greenery here in the Cascades; but when you look past the sheer number of green colors, you begin to see the thousands of plants and animals that make up all this. From the mice running around the forest floor to the 15 story high Douglas fir trees towering above, every part of the forest is a small piece of an overall environment. I’ve got some more days ahead of me exploring these beautiful forests, so stay tuned for more pictures coming soon!

-Warren

Pictures from Days 31-32:

Waterfalls are everywhere in these mountains, just hidden by thick forests.

Waterfalls are everywhere in these mountains, just hidden by thick forests.

In the old forest woods, light is prevalent at the top but becomes much scarcer closer towards the ground.

In the old forest woods, light is prevalent at the top but becomes much scarcer closer towards the ground.

These fir trees were the giants of the forest. They would rise sometimes twice as high as any other tree type around them. Literally the skyscrapers of the woods.

These fir trees were the giants of the forest. They would rise sometimes twice as high as any other tree type around them. Literally the skyscrapers of the woods.

Mt. Baker seen through the forest.

Mt. Baker seen through the forest.

One of the nicest sunsets I've seen in a while.

One of the nicest sunsets I’ve seen in a while.

And then the sunset turned red.

And then the sunset turned red.

Mt. Baker from Baker Lake.

Mt. Baker from Baker Lake.

Reflections in Baker Lake.

Reflections in Baker Lake.

A better view of Mt. Baker.

A better view of Mt. Baker.

It's easy to get lost in the depths of these woods.

It’s easy to get lost in the depths of these woods.