Fourth of July Trailhead ~ Colorado

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The Fourth of July Trailhead would have been a great place to hike the Indian Peaks Wilderness… However sadly, Mother Nature decided to rain and hail on us that day! As we drove up, the sun would shine, then hide. We figured we’d see what was happening when we got up there. Que the hail!

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It seems climbers see a place to climb, haphazardly park their cars and get out the ropes. I guess it’s good to be near a paved highway if you were to fall. My luck, I’d fall and a super bus will be rounding the bend =-(

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North Fork Middle Boulder Creek

After going through the town of Eldora, Colorado (pop. 142) we drove on about five miles to a single lane, dirt road. Although the road was narrow with steep switchbacks and steep in places, Chris had no trouble making it all the way to the parking area. I could not drive this road in my Mitsubishi Eclipse… Well, I could if I didn’t mind losing all my ground effects! Better to take a higher riding automobile.

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Not that you can see, however directly after the little row of Aspen on the left, was a good 500 foot drop.

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We truly like our adventures. We did much of the navigation by memory as we had no signal from the three cell phone companies we had phones for in the car. Even after looking on maps now, after the fact, they are not represented well as they were dirt. I think I will invest in a paper map, however, I still bet these roads are not on the map.

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wpid-wp-1444237089574.jpgThere are many stories of how the trailhead got its name:

  • For the purported silver lode discovered by C.C. Alvord on July 4, 1872 in a mine along the south flank of S. Arapaho Peak.
  • The trails to the lakes and high passes are typically not clear until after The Fourth of July.
  • Some also attribute the name to brilliant wildflowers reminiscent of fireworks on The Fourth of July.

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© Ilex – Midwestern Plant Girl

20 thoughts on “Fourth of July Trailhead ~ Colorado

  1. Wow! Those trails look amazing. LOve your reference to the sports bra in the comments. It just opened up my eyes to the experience.
    I was thinking of you while we were up at Byron Bay. Geoff’s family has been putting a fair bit of effort into their garden lately. This area has very rich volcanic soils and Geoff says that you basically throw vegetation on the ground and it strikes and grows. My favourite flowers on the farm were these huge red hippeastrums. I felt like I could dive inside one of those and wrap myself up in the petals like a blanket. Of course, I’ve set myself all sorts of unrealistic goals for our own garden. Going to plant a garden out the front based on some lavender plants and there’s a beautiful purple flowering tree called Tibouchinas. I thought I’d plant a few of them too, although by now the garden is getting expensive and hard to justify given my brown thumb.
    It’s also getting hot here and the thought of digging any kind of hole is a serious turn off!’ xx Ro

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    • Oh the volcanic soil must be a treat to grow in. I hear root veggies (carrots, beets, potatoes..) grow well in it. I only have my experience of living in Florida to give me perspective on the heat and soil type (kinda) of Australia. I fried out so many plants there it wasn’t funny! Sand holds no moisture and the heat can cook a plant faster than a microwave 😠 I finally planted a bunch of cacti type stuff and washed my hands of the garden.

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  2. Pingback: Phavorite Photos from 2015 – Part 2 | Midwestern Plants

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