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Backpack at Blue Lakes in the Beautiful San Juans

 

 

 

Blue Lakes Backpack - this page will be updated with new info as soon as possible!  Please stay tuned...

 

We will hike in on the Blue Lakes Trail to make camp at the lowest blue lake. 


WHEN:
For those coming from GJCO, meet at 6:00 a.m. to carpool or caravan.
GJ carpool caravanning will meet at Orchard Mesa City Market parking lot.


Those from outside GJ, plan your time to meet at trailhead at 10:00 AM. Any Delta, Montrose or Ridgeway members, we can scoop you up on the drive through your towns.


Plan to hike in and explore around on Saturday.

 

This is FULL MOON weekend, with the moon at perigee - count on some FANTASTIC night skies (weather permitting).


WHERE:
We will depart from the East Dallas Creek trailhead. This soon splits into the Blaine Basin approach and the Blue Lakes Approach. We will be taking the Blue Lakes trail approach to the pass. This is said to be a lot less crowded than Yankee Boy Basin so, probably a nicer place to be.

We will be camping below the pass at the lower Blue Lake.

From Ridgeway on US Hwy 550, turn west on CO Hwy 62 then go 4.8 miles. Turn south onto Ouray County road 7 (East Dallas Cr. Rd.). This is now a dirt road and you want to measure distances carefully so set the trip odometer. Stay left at .3 miles and right at 2.0 miles. Enter Uncompahgre Natl Forest at mile 7.2. Stay right, crossing E. Dallas Creek at mile 8.2. At 8.8, take the middle of 3 forks and reach the trailhead at mile 9.


Backpack in 3 miles to the lower lake at 11,000', to the upper lakes at either 11,480' or 11,720'. Distance to the higher lakes is ~4 miles from the trailhead.  The best camping is said to be at the lower lakes in a large grove of trees.


BRING:
- Camping gear; tent, sleeping bag, etc.
- Water filter (can be shared)
- Rain gear (especially since we'll start Sat. hike at 10:00 a.m. we may get caught in afternoon thunder storms.
- Proper methods for human sanitation (this is a high impact area)

CARPOOLING:
Carpooling or caravanning possible from GJ, Montrose or . . . ? Let it be known in your RSVP if you want to drive/ride? Meet at the Orchard Mesa City Market store parking lot at 7 AM. I will most likely NOT be arriving via GJ, so if someone in GJ would like to coordinate carpooling, that would be great.


COST:
Generous gas contribution if you are a carpool rider. Parking & camping are free.


DOGS:
As this event is being updated to a BACKPACK ONLY (some may want to hike up to Blue Lakes Pass to get some outstanding views and pictures on Sunday...), we will allow very well-trained and behaved dogs - your dog must be on voice command or else leashed if he/she starts to get out of hand.  You must maintain control of your pup at all times and clean up after them as appropriate!!!


CONTACT:
Suzy Noonan (401)[masked]
As the time nears for this trip final plans may be partially or wholly decided for us based on the weather

 

Join or login to comment.

  • Suzy N.

    We've got SO many great photos getting uploaded here for this trip, but I especially love the ones of all our pups romping through the flowers and streams, and scrambling up those amazing trails and overlooks! Doggone FUN!

    1 · June 25, 2013

  • Lori L.

    It was AWESOME (oops . . . I mean FABULOUS)!

    June 24, 2013

    • Lori L.

      Thanks to Suzy for doing such a great job of pulling this together. Its takes a lot of time and energy to facilitate so many people having a safe and enjoyable backpacking adventure.

      1 · June 25, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Great trail that navigated steep slopes to land us on the shores of a turquoise blue lake. The scale and slope of that part of the San Juan's was dramatic enough and then the full moon was added. Wow!

    June 24, 2013

  • Ridgway R.

    Thanks Barrie. That pack I carried down was 58 lbs. I think I have some cutting to do! Yeah, i'm tired, too.

    June 23, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Criminy! You sure DO have some paring down to do, for your pack AS WELL AS your two PUPS' packs! Are George and Spike still "speaking" to you? LOL.

      1 · June 24, 2013

    • Mary M.

      Ridgway, your pack needs a "diet" but not you, Thanks for showing me the special blow-it-up mattress assist!

      June 24, 2013

  • Mary M.

    Everyone cooperated even though there were different plans afoot; a most congenial bunch, great weather, excellent hiking companions-just yes, I can't stop myself, FANTASTIC! (you thought I was going to say awesome, didnt' you?)

    1 · June 24, 2013

  • Suzy N.

    Hate to over-use the word, but it really WAS an AWESOME weekend up at Blue Lakes!!! We had a great crew of people turn out, perfect weather (no rain!), THE SUPERMOON was incredible (once it FINALLY peeked over the peaks: "It's DEFINITELY getting brighter at the notch!!! DEFINITELY, definitely brighter!") and the lakes were, as usual, breathtakingly beautiful. I think all of our frisky canine buddies had a blast, too! Thanks to the whole group for your enthusiastic participation, making this a fantastic trip!

    June 24, 2013

  • Barrie B.

    Happy Birthday Ridgway. To everyone there I had a great time. I am whoopped though.

    1 · June 23, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Great to hear you really enjoyed the weekend. It's awesome that some of you more intrepid adventurers made it to the top of Blue Lakes Pass. Another time for me! Thank you again for loaning some of your gear!

      June 24, 2013

  • Ridgway R.

    Why can't I find the picture upload?

    June 23, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Site will probably allow you to download once the event's "officially" over at 4:00 p.m.

      June 24, 2013

    • Elizabeth B.

      Doug I've seen this problem before and folks just have to make sure that they are logged in

      June 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Great trip. Stacy a and Ridg thanks for the companionship.

    June 23, 2013

    • Ridgway R.

      My pleasure.

      June 24, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Too bad we missed each other, Jeffrey, but I'm glad you enjoyed the day.

      June 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I actually made it to the trailhead by 9:30 am. Had a wonderful time.

    June 22, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Sorry we missed you! Glad it was a great hike for you!

      June 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Thanks Suzy and all. Very great trip , weather, and assistance from all !

    June 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I will be coming just for the day on Saturday. I picked up an OT. shift that just came available at work. Jeff

    June 21, 2013

    • Barrie B.

      Work is way over rated. :>)

      1 · June 22, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Anytime Jeff. It was very nice to meet you.

      June 23, 2013

  • Suzy N.

    I checked the weather forecast for today thru Sunday and it looks AWESOME! No rain/storms now!!! Should be clear skies for our Super Moon!!!

    1 · June 22, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    My sincere apologies, but I have to take a Place exam that day. Best wishes for a fantastic trip. I am bummed I cannot go.

    June 20, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Hope you can make it on another trip. The Wetterhorn Basin backpack trip next weekend has one open spot yet!

      1 · June 22, 2013

  • Suzy N.

    Who will be staying over on Sunday night? Head count, please!

    June 17, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Stacey is coming too. :)

    June 21, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Yay! Glad you could join us!

      June 21, 2013

  • Suzy N.

    Ridge, in answer to your voicemail, come PREPARED for overnight temps in the low-to-mid-thirties.

    June 21, 2013

  • Brenna O

    Found out today that a good friend is coming to town for the weekend so i will not be joining the trip. Have fun everyone. Look forward to seeing the area in july.

    June 20, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      We'll miss you! See you down here next month!

      June 21, 2013

  • Ridgway R.

    I have a seat available for car pool. 2002 Subaru Forester, reasonably clean, with two nice dogs in back.

    June 21, 2013

  • Barrie B.

    trailhead parking is limited as most places are. How about everyone meeting at Target & consolidate vehicles.

    June 21, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Good idea!

      June 21, 2013

  • Ridgway R.

    Have two well trained dogs

    1 · June 20, 2013

  • Jill W.

    Just back in town, I have to work this weekend. Hope there is someone who can take my spot on this late notice.

    June 20, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I'll join you for the day - it's a short drive from my house. I will bring my yellow lab; Blue Lakes is one of his very fav. hikes! He especially likes the far end of the lower lake where the best Colombines hide. Pastis & I will be at the trailhead.

    June 18, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Our dog Gracie has a "thing" for yellow labs! She's an Australian Cattle Dog mix (mixed with some shepherd, we think), and very playful. Getting all the dogs together will be really fun, I think!

      1 · June 20, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I have extra Thermarests

    June 19, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      David, if we may borrow one or two - I will check with Barrie, as Patrick is 6'4". I will call you later to discuss. Thanks!

      June 19, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      OK, checked with Barrie and we're all set for pads!

      June 19, 2013

  • Barrie B.

    Hi All, If anyone needs any gear let me know. I have extra stuff. backpack to pads. I also have a pair of Scarpa mountaineering boots sz 42 for sale. I could be easily talked into Sneffels on Sun. I'll be heading back to Montrose Sun evening. I'm bringing my pole & hope to eat fish Sat night. If anyone wants to pool from Montrose let me know. Suzy where & when are we meeting Sat AM?
    Be Happy,[masked]

    June 18, 2013

    • Barrie B.

      What was that 0800? :>)

      June 19, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Well, WE will be in the Target lot at 8:45!

      June 19, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Yes

    June 19, 2013

  • Brenna O

    my telephone number is 425 [masked] to contact for carpooling.

    June 19, 2013

  • Brenna O

    Who is meeting in Grand junction to carpool? Where is it safe in Grand junction to car overnight without it being towed or ticket.
    I will spending friday in grand junction would like to carpool from grand junction.
    Thank you

    June 18, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Could I join you just for the day?

    June 18, 2013

    • Lori L.

      Mary Ann - Hope you decide to do the day hike and come up for the day. We have some things in common (running and former resident of Sonoma County) so would love to get to know you. Look forward to meeting you!

      June 18, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Cool, Lori! I just returned from a few days with the Sonoma County Wanderers - a great group! We had a B-Day bash on Angel Island - about 10-mile hike and party - with 53 of my best friends! Now it's time for CO fun hikes.

      1 · June 18, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Will try again when I can make better plans for car-pooling and equipment. Have fun !

    June 18, 2013

  • Elizabeth B.

    camping at silver jack Friday night. getting a ride to middle fork car drop for extended backpack trip.

    June 17, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      I think you meant to post this on the Wetterhorn Basin event page, girlie! But, noted... :0P

      June 17, 2013

    • Elizabeth B.

      Oops :-/

      June 17, 2013

  • Brenna O

    Since the trip is now official only backpacking will anybody be leaving on sunday or is everyone staying out over sunday night and coming back monday. I need to come back sunday for work on monday.
    Also would there be anyone from the group that would be interested in do sneffels on the easier class 2 route?
    I will be in grand juction friday night going to a baseball game is there anyone that I could possible spent Friday night with in grand juction to cut down on a second trip to grand junction saturday morning.

    June 13, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      I might be interested in the Class 2 route on Sunday, and as well returning on Sunday night.

      June 17, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      John, I talked to Brenna earlier this evening to clarify that the trail for the "Standard" Class 2 Route would be accessed by hiking up a trail from the highest blue lake to Blue Lakes Pass and descending down the other side of Sneffels (the Yankee Boy side) to intersect the "Standard" Class 2 route up to the top. I want to make clear that this is a different approach (and additional hiking) than the SW Ridge route that Beth is leading on July 14th. The SW Ridge route is accessed by hiking up to the pass and heading right up that ridge from there. That will have Class 3 and 4 scrambling. After discussion of these different approaches, I think Brenna has decided to wait til July vs this weekend. I don't know whether there are any others signed up for this backpack weekend who have climbed Sneffels via EITHER approach. Anybody?

      June 17, 2013

  • Brenna O

    After talking to Suzy and realizing that we are not camping in the valley that is used for the standard route. With the new information I do not feel comfortable leading a group up the soutwest ridge class 3 so I am canceling my idea for the sneuffels ascent. I will go with the group and not climb sneuffels. Sorry David. I will plan on going with group in july.

    June 17, 2013

  • Brenna O

    Suzy is their going to be any attempt to find out from the group who has stoves so we are not bring 13 individual stoves. Who has stoves that would be comfortable sharing with the group and the same thing with water filter. Any females would be comfortable sharing a tent? I will be glad to help with the carrying the tent. I will be needing to leave sunday.

    Suzy are you comfortable with a small group of us trying the summit sunday?

    June 17, 2013

    • Mike W.

      Brenna - you should contact David J. He went up both Sherman and Elbert in the last two weekends and might be interested in another 14'er. I would hike/peak bag with either of you (anytime) but am taking another group up Elbert (again) so I'll miss this one. And you guys are welcome to borrow my water filter (Katadyn Hiker Pro) and an MSR Hubba 1 person tent this weekend.

      June 17, 2013

    • Brenna O

      Mike, david and I have been talking via phone and both talking about doing snueffels

      June 17, 2013

  • Brenna O

    I am also looking to carpool with someone from grand junction. I will also need to head back sunday for work on monday. I am planning on climbing mt. sneffels.

    June 9, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      and as well, perhaps we could carpool ?

      June 17, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I haven't backpacked in some time, and haven't the funds to get equipment. I see there are folks on waiting list, happy for one of them, have fun.

    June 17, 2013

  • Lon C.

    Plan to go with rescheduled July 13th trip

    June 16, 2013

  • Suzy N.

    Will have to make sure Patrick can get the 22nd and 23rd off, but I can go on my own if not. Possible carpool offer for Montrose to the TH. Not sure yet. Might ride in with David Williams. My number is (401)[masked]

    1 · March 10, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Patrick was able to get Sat, Sun, and Monday, so we'll be staying Sunday night, too.

      March 19, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      If Patrick can't go we can car pool!I'd like to be at th TH at 10 if we can, need to be back Sunday night.

      June 15, 2013

  • Suzy N.

    Would you folks coming down from GJ be able to start out an hour earlier (6:00 a.m.), to meet at the TH at 10:00 instead of 11:00? If everyone could please give me some feedback on the feasibility of an earlier departure time for each of you, I would greatly appreciate it!

    June 13, 2013

  • Suzy N.

    I will not have the opportunity to "re-tool" this page until Friday evening, probably, but here's the basic skinny: THIS event will be A BACKPACK ONLY. If some folks still want to climb Sneffels on the 23rd, that will have to be posted (and hosted) by someone else. Please feel free to step up to that duty if you feel you have the appropriate experience and skills to do so! I will refer you to Beth to discuss that possibility. This is a very popular peak and I know there are many who will want a chance to conquer it this year.

    June 12, 2013

  • Mary M.

    I want to backpack in but not necessarily do the climb. I'd like to carpool with someone from GJ; I have a Prius so could also meet in Ridgeway and carpool from there. The only "wildcard" is I just got notice for Jury duty that Friday. Will know Thurs afternoon if that's a "go" Prefer to carpool with someone returning Sunday night.

    June 9, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Hi, Mary, I would carpool with you. I have to be back Sunday night as well. Can easily wait for you to find out about jury duty. We could pool from GJ.

      June 9, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    This is a very very popular place to camp in the summer time. May have to break up the group since not many of the spaces are that big.

    April 10, 2013

    • Elizabeth B.

      I agree Was discouraged in signing up due to size. But I wil go someplace else that weekend

      June 3, 2013

    • Mary M.

      camp space is indeed very limited up there as I recall.

      June 9, 2013

  • Brenna O

    Thank you for the open spot. I will need to make sure that I have ride home on sunday with the people that are doing mt. sneffels has a day trip. Have to work on Monday.

    May 18, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Due to a small surgical event on the 18th and a ahumph from the Doctor..I will not be backpacking in or doing the ascent of Mt. Sneffels. Poo. :-(

    May 18, 2013

  • Brenna O

    I would have to leave on sunday to get to work on monday.

    May 15, 2013

  • Brenna O

    If there is any room or if someone cancels I would like to also backpack in on saturday. Did not realize the backpack portion was a separate sign up.

    May 15, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Also since this is wilderness I would double check the group size. Most wilderness limit groups to 12-15 and 25 with stock animals

    April 10, 2013

    • Beth

      Thanks for the heads up - it is capped at 15. I went ahead and limited RSVPs to that number. So room for one more!

      April 10, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      I confirmed this today, also. Spoke to the folks in the Public Lands office. They recommended 12-15 max, as this is a high-impact area. They also said no camp fires, camp stoves only.

      April 11, 2013

  • Barrie B.

    Beth, I just noticed that there are 2 meetup times, 8 & 9 AM at City Market. I'd suggest 7 if I was coming from GJ but, I'm not :>)

    March 18, 2013

    • Beth

      D'oh! Good catch, Barrie! I will amend to a 7am meeting time at OM CM, although GJ people may want to change that. Craig and I will most likely be coming over Hwy50, so will be bypassing GJ.

      March 19, 2013

  • Barrie B.

    Brenda & I will most likely go up Friday & head down Sun as planned unless I have enough vac time to stay Sun too.

    March 18, 2013

  • Suzy N.

    Would anyone be interested in extending the camping to Monday, staying Sunday night also, and then heading out on Monday? Beth, would we need a separate posting for an extra night for the hiker-campers (and folks who might want to rest their bones after the summit) or is this mention OK?

    March 10, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Yes, I would like to stay longer.

      March 11, 2013

    • Suzy N.

      Great! Getting one extra day will be nice.

      March 11, 2013

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  • Suzy N.
    Assistant Organizer,
    Event Host
  • Lori L.
    Assistant Organizer
  • A former member
  • A former member
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  • A former member
    +1 guest
  • A former member
  • A former member
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