Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Two New Trails

View from the summit.  Mummy Range in Rocky Mountain National Park is visible in the background.
Last Friday, August 31, I helped the Trails Committee for my community install some rock steps on a particularly steep portion of one of the trails that threads through the open space in our community.  I had not yet walked this trail, and I was impressed with the scenery, so I returned yesterday (September 4) to walk this trail (called Maroon Bells) and another trail I had not previously explored, the Asbury Trail.

The view from the top of the Maroon Bells Trail is spectacular.  The Mummy Range, off to the south and across the Poudre River canyon, is visible in Rocky Mountain National Park.  Some of the Mummy's slopes still have a little snow from last winter.

Ranch and forest land adjacent to the open space in my community.
The stone steps the Trails Committee volunteers installed last Friday on the Maroon Bells Trail
At the eastern end of the Maroon Bells Trail, I picked up the Asbury Trail, which I had not previously walked.  This rocky, difficult trail travels along the contours of a steep hill with a full southern exposure; it was hot and challenging.
Cairns marking the Asbury Trail
As I rounded a bend in the Asbury Trail, I startled three magnificent mule deer bucks in full velvet.  One deer ran off, but the other two allowed me to capture their picture.  Since there's no hunting in our community, the deer are fairly tame and don't run long distances even when caught off guard.

Two of the three mule deer bucks I startled along the Asbury Trail
I took these images with my cell phone and enhanced them with Canon's PhotoProfessional program.  The originals are relatively low density images, so there's only so much improvement the program can make.

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