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Chimney Rock, hike #410

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Chimney Rock, hike #410

Trail #256



Jul 11, 2011…Chimney Rock…TR #256 …hike # 410     

The plan was to attempt once again to get to Silver Dollar Peak, having unsuccessfully attempted four previous times. There would need to be plenty of snow so as to be able to walk on the still snow-buried heavy brush…mostly alder. HA! The joke was on us…there was no snow at all. So as so often happens, plans changed and we just continued to head up on the trail. Lots of water, and the first crossing…Thor Creek has a nice new bridge so that was not a problem getting across. The second unnamed creek was an issue…there would be no crossing it. Instead we bushwhacked up the side of the creek thru the alder and found a double log to cross over on…we have crossed over using these logs before a few times. Then once over the harrowing crossing, we headed back down the other side of the creek to the trail. It was so hot. Continuing on, I was in the lead and while always spotting for bears or moose, I spotted movement up ahead. There was a very young doe standing in the trail staring at me. I zoomed in and got goods shots and then I saw a second one…a young buck… come out of the woods. So cute and curious they were.

The falls were full of wild water…this is the most water we have ever seen on this trail. Continuing on, we finally reached the biggie…Chimney Creek, where we saw the first snow. I took one look at the raging creek and said to Jim…I am NOT crossing that…with the emphasis on NOT! We sat down and ate our mango. Then he got the bright idea to try to walk up into the brush and try to find a way over…and that I was to stay there. Why don’t I ever learn? I don’t like being left alone, and he knows that I don’t like being left alone…I told him okay but not to be long. He was gone for 25 very long fear-filled minutes. My head was constantly spinning around looking for bears. The roar of the creek was deafening which added to the anxiety. Did he fall? Was he hurt? Did he fall in? How long do I wait before I go in to look for him? I tried my phone and there was no service to check email or play on the internet to pass the time or to call 911. I was screaming but of course he couldn’t hear me. Where was he? I kept looking across to the other side of the wild and loud creek and if I saw him over there I was going to wave goodbye and walk back to the truck alone and wait there for him. I was mad enough to do it. He finally did show up, unable to get across the rushing water and I had no words for him, at least none that I said out loud. So rude. Then we sat down and had lunch before heading back down the trail at 12:10.

It was VERY hot coming down this mostly sunny and always hot trail. We stopped a bit to take pictures, of the yellow violets and bear grass just coming into bloom. Saw neither people nor any wildlife, except for a snowshoe hare and a chipmunk. The huckleberry season should be good this year…so many bushes laden with still small and green berries. We missed it with a bad season last year. I lost my hat today…when we got to the truck I was so hot and anxious to get the boots off that I threw it on the ground and forgot to pick it back up.

Left home                    8:30

Started up                   9:25

Got to truck                 2:00   

Total miles hiked          7½ -8 miles      

Total hiking time           4 hours, 35 minutes      


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Author info

Betsy Fulling Betsy Fulling In 2002, after a bout with cancer and wanting her energy back, Betsy Fulling began hiking with her husband Jim. Regardless of the weather they go into the high country every week - in eight years, she has only missed five times.

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Homepage, Headlines, deer, hiking, Chimney Rock, Silver Dollar Peak, Thor Creek, Chimney Creek, yellow violets, bear grass

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Yellow Violets Bear Grass

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