Monday, January 23, 2012

Legault Mountain

I did a little research on Summit Post and found another easy mountain to climb that was had a bit higher elevation. Legault Mountain is in the Meyer Ranch Park and stands 9,040 Ft. This was another beautiful area, a bit further from home but within a 45 minute drive.

The route started at the Meyer Ranch parking lot. Starting on the Owl's Perch Trail this connects with the Lodgepole Loop onto the Sunny Aspen Trail to the Old Ski Run Trail then finally onto the the summit ridge of Legault Mountain.

Aspen groves surround much of this area as well as a large amount of Lodgepoles hence the Lodgepole Loop Trail. I saw nobody while in the park area which is very nice for being so close to Denver. The trails were very gradual and covered in snow and ice. Funny story: I finally make it to REI to buy the micro spikes, which I do en route to the park. I arrive at the parking lot and load up my bag. Upon opening the box of spikes, I find there is only one not the pair in the box. Awesome...I went ahead on up the trail and did my best not to "eat it" and made it through without any accidents. On my way home I went to REI and got my other micro spike.

This was a beautiful area and I even ended up taking Kristi snowshoeing here a few months later. Once to the edge of the park there were a lot of private property signs which I had never encountered yet. The funny thing was they were graffiti up with spray paint. I can't imagine hiking all the way up there with spray paint to tag a sign, but then again I'm not a juvenile delinquent.
There was a slight climbers trail leading up the last 300 vertical feet to the summit. I always like a trail! After a nice stair stepping heart pounding gain I made it to the summit. The trees cleared enough to get a nice view of the Front Range. I could clearly see the Mt. Evans group of 14ers which I plan to tackle in the spring.

A great climb up with great rewards of scenery is all I can ask for. On the way back I just re-traced my steps since this wasn't really a loop hike. Now that I have been up to 9,000 Ft hopefully I can start getting up some bigger mountains. But, I will still take my time since I'm doing mostly solo hiking. The great thing is the cell reception is great in the Front Range so I don't need to renew my SPOT Messenger yet.

Date: 11/21/2011

Starting Elevation: 7,880 Ft.

Summit Elevation: 9,040 Ft.

Distance: 5.1 Miles

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