(Last Updated On: August 22, 2014)
I’ve done all parts of this loop before, but never the whole thing. With my dad in town, I put this hike high on the radar. With some of the most stunning mountain views and colorful wildflowers that the Crested Butte has to offer, I was eager to show the “Triple Bipass Loop” – Hasley, Frigid Air, and West Maroon – to my father.
We began at the West Maroon trailhead. After only 1/2 mile, the trail has an unobvious split. We took the left fork toward Hasley Pass. While the wildflowers were waning, especially in the valley, we still found spots where they were brilliant.
I’ve learned, recently, that these flowers are NOT asters. They are fleabane.
THESE are asters 🙂
Not sure of the name of this plant, but it reminds me of the Green Gentian or Monument plant, except red.
Many of the sunflowers were past their prime. But, occasionally we came across one in its perfection.
A rainbow of colors.
I love this hike.
Frigid Air held a fiery glow while the Maroon Bells loomed behind, towering in the shadows.
The views from the top of Hasley Pass are hard to beat, unless you drop down into Hasley Basin, which we did.
I call this my fairyland. It truly is a magical place.
King’s Crown, named for its nearly microscopic crowns housed in every flower.
After descending for a short bit into Hasley Basin, we followed a faint trail that traversed right into another basin.
Views from the second basin, with paintbrush and elephant heads in the foreground.
Another look at Snowmass.
We found lots of sheep in this hidden basin.
So many sheep, it was hard to capture them all in pictures. Here’s one attempt.
Some sheep cared that we were there. Others didn’t. Either way, we had to walk between an obvious split in the herd to make our way to the next saddle.
We ascended the hidden basin to another pass where Frigid Air Pass lay across the way.
The faint trail we followed from this pass was decorated with plentiful wildflowers, like these sneezeweed and larkspur.
Alas we made our way on top of Frigid Air Pass, where the backside of the Maroon Bells stood proud before us.
Looking down the magnificent Fravert Basin from Frigid Air Pass.
My dad on top of Frigid Air.
Layers of mountains sprawled before us.
The trail to West Maroon hosted some of the best wildflowers we saw on our day’s hike.
The intersection of the Frigid Air trail with the West Maroon Pass trail is always an interesting one. Do I really go up for another 30 minutes before I go down? Or should I just go down? Until this day, down had always prevailed. But, my dad and I headed up. I’d forgotten how beautiful it was from the top of the West Maroon Pass, having been there two years prior on our way to Aspen.
After a quick spurt on West Maroon Pass, we headed downward toward the East Fork valley.
Fields of fireweed smiled at us as we passed them by.
Thanks to my dad for letting me drag him along as a flatlander on this beautiful scenic hike. Fireweed peaking is a true sign of the end of summer. But, there is still much more playing in the mountains to do before the snow flies 🙂
Want to do this hike yourself?