Continental Divide Trail – Day 67

July 29, 2023
Miles Today/ Total: 22.5 / 1157.8

I was up and ready to go pretty quick this morning. I have to hike 22.5 miles today to get to a small notch of land on Lake Granby that isn’t part of the Indian Peaks Wilderness or Rocky Mountain National Park (both having camping restrictions).

The trail started out going through a wet and rocky area leading up to Diamond Lake. I followed the trail through the campground there and only saw 1 tent despite all permits being unavailable. Past the campground the trail began short descent and then started working its way up to Arapahoe Pass.

It was a gradual ascent and there were a lot of hikers out this morning (Saturday). I reached the top of Arapahoe Pass and continued on to Caribou Pass. Most of the other hikers stopped at the high point leading to Caribou Pass and I continued on a narrow ledge around the side of the mountain. There were a couple of places where the trail had washed out or rocks had slid down, but they were easy to get around.

After Caribou Pass it was a long descent down to Junco Lake. The trail, like most in the Indian Peak Wilderness, was steep and heavily washed out. I reached the Junco Lake Trailhead about 11:00am, filled out the trail log, and continued on the High Lonesome Trail toward Monarch Lake.

This trail was pretty well maintained and I was able to make some good time on it. I reached the Monarch Lake trailhead and took a break on the picnic table there.

From here the trail followed the road out of Monarch Lake parking lot, through the Lake Granby campgrounds and to the Roaring Fork Trailhead.

Back on trail I started out on the Roaring Fork Trail. About 1/2 mile in (and about 800’ elevation) I checked my map and had gone the wrong way. I turned around and headed back down the hill. Back at the missed turn, I continued in the correct direction and headed on the trail around Lake Granby. This trail had some elevation, but it was a gradual climb up to the top of the ridge overlooking the lake.

The trail followed the ridge for awhile and began dropping down into a valley that led to the lake. I reached the lake and was able to collect water from a small creek feeding the lake. I then searched out a campsite and found a small site overlooking the lake. There were several large campsites in this area and many of the boaters utilize these sites on the weekends.

I cooked my dinner while sitting on a log overlooking the lake. There are several boater groups around me and I feel it will be a noisy night.

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