A Dramatic Sunset in the Indian Peaks Wilderness, CO
Last week I was able to snag a permit for a dayhike in the Indian Peaks Wilderness, a wild stretch of Colorado's Front Range. The area is supremely scenic and offers easy access for the Front Range cities (Denver, Boulder, Loveland, Fort Collins, etc) which makes it supremely busy. Fortunately, a permit system has been implemented in the busiest areas to reduce traffic and protect these wild spaces. Unfortunately, backpacking is not allowed in this portion of the IPW so dayhiking is what is allowed. My goal was to catch sunset on top of Pawnee Pass and scramble around the surrounding peaks. A 9+ mile roundtrip from the trailhead.
The trail itself is stunning. A few miles of old growth forest followed by stunning Lake Isabelle finished with a steep, but well designed uphill to the pass with unbeatable views in every direction. The real surprise for me however, was the dramatic granite cliffs that flanked the pass. Despite the area being so popular I swear people are sleeping on this area because of all the places I've traveled this has got to be one of the most impressive and dramatic mountain wildernesses in the US. All within an hours drive of my house! Anyway, I'll the pictures do the talking from here on out! Enjoy!
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