Today’s hike needed to be both inspiring and challenging but I was also worried about the condition of the trails I originally had planned on doing with all the snow we got the last weekend. I had hoped that the warm up being forecasted would happen earlier in the week and be more intense than it was, but it was enough that anywhere that received a ton of snow would have melted to the point of being annoying once we started hiking over it which pretty much covered those hikes I had planned. There was one trail I thought would be a good bet for this weekend after all our weather, but it was a repeater so I decided to add-on more mileage and elevation gain.
We originally went to Mt. Falcon Park Jefferson County Open Space (details of the trail in the link) at the end if July last year. The first time we hiked this park, we were there on a really hot day thinking “I bet this hike is really great in spring or fall”. Plus there are a great set of trails at the top that we could use to challenge us to go further and climb more. That is how we ended up back at Mt. Falcon Park today. Here is what we took on for our hike:
Turkey trot> Castle trail> Parmalee Trail> Meadow Trail > Castle > Turkey Trot : Officially 10.5 miles, my fitbit said 11.8 miles total it took us 4 &1/2 hours. A total elevation gain of 2100 feet.
It was a little cold and windy at first, but before we knew it we were peeling off layers of clothes trying not to sweat through everything. It didn’t take long for us to remember why we wanted to come back to this trail again, the views were beautiful again and the changing sky made them new when we passed them again later. We were lucky enough to have these 3 ladies greet us as we got closer to the west parking lot, too bad for the runner that came by before I could snap the perfect picture but at least I got this one.
We have been here before, but that first time we were competing with a race so we kept dodging runners. This time it was still pretty active but it was a nice mix of runners & hikers but nothing like the last time, it was such a nice hard workout with all the beauty! Instead of going from the East parking lot to the west parking then back, we wanted to get more mileage so at the top we decided to take on the Parmalee Trail because it had a nice elevation decrease then regain and it was a loop that brought us back to the Castle trail. It was a perfect add-on!
The Meadow Trail was actually the toughest part and not because it was hard but because it had a couple of feet of snow we had to walk on. Since we had already taken the legs off our pants it made for interesting half mile.
The Parmalee trail was really beautiful, mostly covered by trees and then it broke out of the trees with great views of the surrounding mountains.
When we got back to the Castle Trail, a lot more clouds had started to roll in but man did it make the mountains look even better.
As we headed back down the views of the ruins there also looked spectacular!!! I don’t know what it was but everything just looked so good today.
Oh and there was a new sign that I hadn’t seen before….I hope they start posting these everywhere because really going up is hard and those going down should give way even if they are jogging….
Here are a couple of the amazing views we had:
This hike was wonderful, even more so then the first time we did it! If you find your way over to this park try any of these trails or all of them, they were all great on their own each with new and amazing views!
When we got home, one of our cats was very vocal about us coming home smelling terrible but still demanded he get picked up….