Hiking Project Logo

Beginner Backing in Colorado Front Range-ish


Original Post
Sarah Krzanowsky · · Evergreen, CO · Joined Apr 2019 · Points: 0

Hi there!  
I have a brand new BSA Scout troop that is looking to go backpacking in the Colorado Front Range area mid-August.  My oldest scout, 16yrs, has done one other backpacking trip, the rest have not.  I do love hiking and have done snowshoe trips to the huts here, a few nights in the Boundary Waters, but alas, backpacking has not quite happened yet.

Do you know of any easy, maybe 2 night backpacking trips that my girls can do? Not too much elevation gain or miles each day.  

Thank you so much!
-Sarah

aikibujin · · Castle Rock, CO · Joined Oct 2014 · Points: 0

What's the maximum mileage and elevation gain you expect to do every day? And how well are the girls acclimatized to the elevation (are they living in Colorado or will they be coming from lower parts of the country)? That will give us a better idea of what to suggest. The better backpacking loops I’ve done in Colorado (like the Four-Pass Loop and Pawnee-Buchanan Loop) all tends to have pretty big mileage and elevation if you want to do them over 2 nights.

Sarah Krzanowsky · · Evergreen, CO · Joined Apr 2019 · Points: 0
aikibujin wrote: What's the maximum mileage and elevation gain you expect to do every day? And how well are the girls acclimatized to the elevation (are they living in Colorado or will they be coming from lower parts of the country)? That will give us a better idea of what to suggest. The better backpacking loops I’ve done in Colorado (like the Four-Pass Loop and Pawnee-Buchanan Loop) all tends to have pretty big mileage and elevation if you want to do them over 2 nights.

Ah, good questions, thanks.  They are all acclimated, we live in the front range in the 7,000-8,000 ft range.  I would guess 2-3 miles a day, and less than 1000ft gain each day. 

aikibujin · · Castle Rock, CO · Joined Oct 2014 · Points: 0
Sarah Krzanowsky wrote:

Ah, good questions, thanks.  They are all acclimated, we live in the front range in the 7,000-8,000 ft range.  I would guess 2-3 miles a day, and less than 1000ft gain each day. 

That’s going to limit your options a lot. It’d be hard to make a backpacking loop that’s 9 miles long, your best option maybe an out-and-back trip, set up a basecamp on day 1, do a day hike / explore on day 2, and return on day 3. Lost Lake in the Indian Peak Wilderness near Nederland is one option that I can think of. You can camp right next to the lake, it’s a very pretty lake, and you have a bunch of options to day hike from there (King Lake, Woodland Lake, Devil’s Thumb, Jasper Lake). It is VERY popular and busy on the weekends though.
https://www.hikingproject.com/trail/7006672/hessie-to-lost-lake


Is the Maroon Bells too far? If not, you can hike from Maroon Lake to Crater Lake and basecamp around there. Again, very popular and busy area, but it is beautiful.
I’ll try to think of any other options.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Other Stuff
Post a Reply to "Beginner Backing in Colorado Front Range-ish"

Log In to Reply