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Old 08-08-2017, 05:18 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
4,756 posts, read 4,868,050 times
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Chase these 10 Colorado waterfalls and discover more adventure around them | Colorado Springs Gazette, News

I did that Willow Lake climb (2900 ft elevation gain) when I was young. I remember thinking along the way, "aren't we there yet?" It damn near killed me.

When we finally got up to the lake there were other hikers there drinking beer!

Then I saw their companion Mule.

Now those guys knew how to make their hike easier. The Mule carried up all their stuff.
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Old 08-08-2017, 07:19 AM
 
1,553 posts, read 2,808,233 times
Reputation: 1979
Nice article, but how could they not list Hanging Lake?
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Old 08-08-2017, 08:32 AM
 
Location: Western Colorado
11,024 posts, read 12,361,150 times
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I am shocked they included the western slope. Cascade Falls in Ouray is pretty darn spectacular too.
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Old 08-08-2017, 09:44 AM
 
Location: Where the mountains touch the sky
602 posts, read 729,191 times
Reputation: 995
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vision67 View Post

I did that Willow Lake climb (2900 ft elevation gain) when I was young. I remember thinking along the way, "aren't we there yet?" It damn near killed me.

When we finally got up to the lake there were other hikers there drinking beer!

Then I saw their companion Mule.

Now those guys knew how to make their hike easier. The Mule carried up all their stuff.
Willow Lakes is beautiful but yes you have to earn it with that climb! Your mule story reminds me of one of the first backing trips we took my niece on when she was pretty young, I think around 9 or 10.

It was on the other side of the Sangres from the Willow Lake trail, Lake of the Clouds. Like most backpacking in that area it's a long climb and elevation gain to get to the high alpine lakes. She was struggling a bit with her pack and getting discouraged. On a steep part of the trail more than half way to the top we moved over to the side to let a family of four pass us that were hiking up with llamas. They were moving at a good pace since all they had were their camelback water packs and the llamas were carrying the gear including a large cooler. My niece was commenting on how that's the way we should backpack and she wanted a llama.

The kids, around 12 and 14 were leading the llamas who started getting spooked. They had made it just a bit past us when all hell broke lose. The llamas started twisting and bucking and began to run back down the trail. The kids, still trying to hold on to the leads, were getting drug along the rocks; parents were yelling at them to let go. The cooler went flying off, soda cans flew out and hit the ground and popped, a big bowl of delicious looking potato salad was dumped in the middle of the trail, while the llamas disappeared down the mountain and out of sight.

We helped them gather their stuff and gave them first aid items to clean up the scrapes and cuts on the kids (their first aid kit was still on a fleeing llama). My hubby asked the man if he knew where the llamas would go and he said "oh yeah they'll be waiting down the mountain by the truck".

As we continued our hike my niece told us quite gravely, I don't want a llama, llamas are a$$ h***s and we never heard another complaint about the trail from her again. :
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