Life is great in Colorado. We do work here, and I have worked too much. Embarrassingly, I took my first backpacking trip a few days ago in Lost Creek Wilderness.
Kudos to Walter Pienciak for recommending it to me. He wrote, “An area rich for personal discovery.” and “If you’re looking for a sense of solitude, it may be here.” Worthwhile and wonderful, Walter!
It’s difficult to imagine a more beautiful place to go backpacking. That’s all you can do there. No cars, bikes, or ATVs. The path out of Wigwam Trailhead is slightly difficult if you are looking for a stroll in the park. The interesting part is that after a hundred feet, you leave the rocks and marsh behind, and it’s, well, a walk in the park.
Hardly anybody was there. Even at the Lost Park Campground where we parked, there were only a few camp sites filled. The road in is dirt for about 20 miles from Jefferson so that probably deters people. If you come from any other direction, you need a jeep, or so the maps say. Also, the hiking is more strenuous on the east side.
And, thanks to Google, have a look for yourself:
You can see where we started, and where we camped. Aidan hadn’t been backpacking before so we took an easy day. The campsite was perfect: near enough to water, a large boulder made a hearth, flat, surrounded by trees, and a perfect tree to make a bear hang.
We had a blast. Fire is great for that. The smoke followed vortices, which showed up great with a flashlight. This picture doesn’t do it justice.
Aidan found the rock outcrop above, which provided a 360-degree view of the area. Truly breathtaking.
The only downside to the area is that is on the approach to Denver or Colorado Springs’ Airport. The jet noise is loud enough to make you realize you are only 50 miles from civilization. I’d say it was about a jet every hour or so, and none during the night.
The trip was a great break from the everyday life of computers and cell phones. Food always tastes better when backpacking, and water is always fresher. We slept well. The evening chill was nice. The morning was a bit cold, but a fresh, hot cuppa fixed it right up.
I’ll be getting lost there again, soon.