The “College” in College Bowl

My jaw dropped in awe of the pure ignorance of these backcountry skiers. I could not believe what they were doing, and that they had also put our group at such huge risk. This group put the College back in College Bowl.

We are lucky in Crested Butte. Most winter recreationists are at least aware of avalanche danger and basic protocol. We are not prone to the inexperienced travelers that you can often see at places like Loveland Pass and parts of Berthoud Pass. And even after spending quite some time skiing on Berthoud, I never saw anything like this.

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Welcome Back Winter, 2018-19

The calendar says it’s still fall. But, around Crested Butte, it’s winter. Some hail, “Oh, winter came early this year!” But they forget that this is normal for us. Winter comes in October most years, with the exception of the last three falls which have been irregularly warm. Admittedly, I’d be okay riding my bike through the end of October without the snow flying. But, I’m always embracing the season we we’re in. And right now, we’re in winter, whether the calendar says so or not.

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TBT: Let the Ski Season Begin (12 Oct 2013)

Ski season began with a bang for us this year. With consistent weekly storm patterns, snow has been gathering up high for the last few weeks. Although still relatively thin, the snowpack is deep enough to not worry too much about hitting debris underneath. Furthermore, it’s supportable and bomber. We’ve never seen anything like it this early in October. That’s why we skied lines this day that we did not touch last year until April.

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TR: Gold Creek 427 to Cameron Creek 549 6.9.18

One of my favorite things about TrailQuest has been that it’s given us a great reason to visit places that I’ve heard of, but haven’t been to. Such was the case with this ride, which had us starting in Union Park. When I first moved to Crested Butte in the late 90’s, Union Park was a topic that seemed to be in every week’s paper, because cities on the front range hoped to build a reservoir here and pump the water through the continental divide. It never happened, and it isn’t likely to happen anytime soon, but nevertheless Union Park remained one of those places I had heard of but never been to. At least, not until TrailQuest got us to ride Gold Creek to Cameron Creek…

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TR: Star-Lily and Lily Pond 7.4.18

Ah, the Fourth of July in Crested Butte. It’s fun, but it’s also a madhouse and for that reason I prefer to ride my bike somewhere far away. My office was having a big party/fundraiser, however, so I needed to stay at least through the parade. Brittany was convinced that I would drink too many Bloody Marys, so she headed towards Taylor Park to ride Star-Lily and Lily Lake on her own. I kept it under control, however, so in the end I was only an hour behind her. We started at the intersection of Taylor Road (742) and 759, and then headed up the long grind towards Italian Mountain, thankfully with great views.

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Mountain Biking Fairview Peak (6 July 2018)

There’s something special about mountain biking on peaks. Plenty of mountain biking trails are accessible throughout Colorado, many of them don’t go to or near a peak. So, when I hear about a trail that allows you to ride to the top of a peak, or at least close to it, the trail piques my interest. Fairview Peak, near the Fossil Ridge area, was one trail that had been on the back of my mind for some time – after spying it during a backpacking trip in the Fossil Ridge Wilderness. But TrailQuest finally gave me a reason to explore mountain biking on Fairview Peak.

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TR: Timberline Trail from Mirror Lake to Texas Ridge 6.19.18

Brittany and I have talked about our Trailquest goals quite a few times and one of the things that the game forces us to do is ride a little farther than we might otherwise. Our original plan was to ride the Timberline trail from the Tincup/ Mirror Lake area, and also add a couple of spur trails- Hillerton (632) and Sanford Creek (584). More on our change of plans in a minute…

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