this saturday we headed to breckenridge for a quick hike. fall is my favorite time of year in the mountains and we always try and get up there to see the aspens changing colors. last year we were lucky and spent a weekend in steamboat springs when the leaves were at their peak and it was such a nice relaxing trip. this year we're headed back to maryland in october so we knew we wouldn't be taking a weekend trip anywhere but breckenridge is one of our favorite quick day trips. a few years ago we did the mccullough gulch hike and then had lunch in town and i was thinking we could do the same thing again this year. i heard that the aspens were already changing and i wanted to make it up to see them before it was too late.
the hike is pretty short, only 2.8 miles but pretty steep in parts, and ends at a beautiful lake. since avery's still not really into the backpack and is getting to the age where being in a carrier for hours at a time isn't the most fun, i've been looking for some shorter hikes that we can do. since we don't get to hike nearly as often as we used to i like to make sure our hikes are either really pretty during or worth it at the end. this one is definitely worth it at the end and was a perfect distance to do with a baby.
for the first time aver actually made it up the entire hike in the backpack. this is pretty huge progress, especially considering we didn't even have to stop to take her out once on the way up.
charlie carried the backpack and i carried a regular daypack and the ergo because after our hike up royal arch i knew i wasn't going anywhere without it. this was a pain on the way down because i had avery in the ergo on my front and the backpack on my back, until charlie took the backpack form me about halfway down after complaining that i was taking too long.
it was pretty chilly and windy once we got to the lake but at this point avery was just happy to be out of the backpack and ready to explore. her little socks got pretty dirty from walking around (not on her own, people!) and i'm pretty sure she ate a rock at some point, but she was happy to be free. this was also her first hike above treeline. the lake is at about 12,000 feet and right below quandary peak, which we hiked before baby.
we let her play for a bit and then headed back down to find some food.
since there weren't really any aspens on the hike we had to take some pictures that proved the leaves really were changing. this is avery grabbing my nose. if you ask her 'where's my nose' she'll grab and and then clap for herself. we're raising a child who must cheer for herself after she accomplishes anything. she's going to have a hard time in school where they don't give breaks for cheering every time you sharpen your pencil. (yes, there is a leaf in my hair).
a happy baby = a successful hike. my how times have changed. :)