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Indian Peaks Wilderness (My 2nd US BP trip)
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Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: Mind your own business
Indian Peaks Wilderness (My 2nd US BP trip) on 06/27/2012 19:11:28 MDT Print View

Hi folks,

Hope all is well tonight.

I had the pleasure of spending last weekend in the company of fellow expat and BPL member Stuart D in the amazing Indian Peaks Wilderness area of Colorado.

For those of you who do not know me I moved to Michigan in February for 3 years, I am from Ireland and before moving Wild camped and hiked in Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England and France.

As I have never hiked or Wild Camped above 4500 feet I knew that I may suffer a bit from the Altitude (more of that later)

We hit the trail at 7.30am on Friday morning and the plan was to hike over Buchanan Pass on to the Eastern Divide and then come back via Pawnee Pass.

I was hiking slowly at first and picked up my speed but by lunch time the Sun and altitude got the better of me and I slowed to a snail’s pace, at about 11300ft I had decided I was officially ill so we headed down to Red Deer Lake which at 10300ft was far more hospitable and we got below the tree line out of the Sun.

During the Night Wind really picked up and we where really appricative we found a some what shelter spot.

Enjoy the pictures,



Coney Flats.


Lovely shade.


Buchanan Pass ahead.


Red Deer Lake


What, a snowfield and its 100F.


Time for Lunch.


Stuart "The guide"


Me and a Tarp Tent Stratosphire 1.


Stuart's Cuben Solomid.

Edited by stephenm on 06/27/2012 20:04:39 MDT.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
Indian Peaks Wilderness (My 2nd US BP trip) on 06/27/2012 20:57:32 MDT Print View

Beautiful photos! Conditions look like they normally do in mid-July--no wonder Colorado is burning!

Maybe next time you go you'll be able to take an extra day or two to acclimatize before going high. It does help!

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: Mind your own business
Re: Indian Peaks Wilderness (My 2nd US BP trip) on 06/27/2012 21:06:54 MDT Print View

Hi Mary,

It is scary the amount of fires in the area, I know there is one not far from Stuarts house.

Stuart and I discussed it and the altitude did effect me but it was the sun that took the biggest toll, I manage to avoid sun burn except for one small spot on my wrist, I got some burn cream on in quickly and it's fine now.

That's sage advice about going out a few days early, I am going to head back in September when it's not so hot and will definitley take a few days hikes in lower down.



Christopher Chupka

Locale: NTX
Us too! on 06/27/2012 23:03:18 MDT Print View

My daughter and I are acclimatizing in a hotel room in Estes Park right now. We drove in from Wichita Falls this AM. No hotels available from Pueblo thru to Boulder.

We planned to stay at Mueller State Park but road blocked, Golden Gate Park also full.

We are gonna do a 3 or 4 day loop in the Indian Peaks starting Friday about noon.

The fires looked terrible from our view driving north on 25.
It was raining fairly decently from Pueblo til about 15 miles south of Colorado Springs.

Sorry about any incoherency, but I've been in the car with my 13 year old daughter since 8AM and its now after midnight TX time.

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: Mind your own business
Re: Us too! on 06/28/2012 12:43:43 MDT Print View

Hi Christopher,

There has been some rain in the area today.

I presume the hotels where full because of folk evacuated from fire zones.

Have a safe trip,


Edited by stephenm on 06/28/2012 12:47:54 MDT.

Drew Smith
(Drewsmith) - M

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Did you ever make it over Buchanan? on 07/15/2012 08:47:11 MDT Print View

There is some truly wild and lovely country on the west side of Buchanan Pass. Fox Park in particular is one of the most scenic areas in the Rockies, in my estimation. That is, assuming that the pine bark beetles have not devastated it in the 10 years since I last visited. Anyway, the Peaceful Valley - Brainard shuttle hike is a true classic, one that you should spend at least 3 days on to fully enjoy.

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: Mind your own business
Re: Did you ever make it over Buchanan? on 07/17/2012 07:33:10 MDT Print View


We did not make it over Buchanan Pass. I did see some dead trees which may be pine back bestle activitiy.

Christopher Chupka

Locale: NTX
Pics on 07/21/2012 22:20:01 MDT Print View

I added some pics from our trip in the Photo Gallery.

Stuart .

Locale: Mountains
Pics on 07/21/2012 22:38:00 MDT Print View

Just saw the pics, Chris. Very nice indeed. Aside from Crater Lake, where did you camp on the route?

Stephen's coming back out at the end of September and we're going for it again, this time in cooler temps and with a bit more acclimatization ahead of the actual backcountry trip.