Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Paradise Divide

Gunnison KOA
Gunnison, CO
July 5, 2016

Today we headed out with Ronnie, Carol and their daughter Shannon who is visiting for the week from Brooklyn.  Our destination was Paradise Divide.  
Our ride started just north of Crested Butte on Slate River Road.  It's an easy 27.5 mile loop through absolutely beautiful country.  We followed Charles Wells' Guide to Colorado Backroads & 4-Wheel-Drive Trails.  The trail starts out as a wide graded road.  At about 9 miles the trail narrows and begins a steep climb. 
















 In addition to the book, we had a local tour guide.

All along the way, we passed waterfalls. Some big ones...


and little ones.

 
Close to 12 miles in, we reached Paradise Divide.  Here we stopped at a small snow melt lake to stretch and take pictures.

















 One of the first flowers to bloom as the snow melts are Glacier Lilies.  


A new to me wildflower...the entire plant is edible and important for wildlife.  Bears will dig up large areas to find bulbs.




Marsh Marigolds...






Carol and Shannon...













Ferns and Blue Flax...

 Joe and Ronnie...






Heartleaf Bittercress...





and Dwarf Rock Jasmine only 1 inch tall...















From here we entered Paradise Basin and headed towards Schofield Pass.


















Emerald Lake sure caught our eye as we headed down the narrow pass.
















Ummm...I'm thinking lunch !

































We meandered along narrow paths in search for the perfect lunch spot and hidden gems along the way.








Lunch with a view...






After lunch, we continued on the narrow shelf road until it turned into Gothic Road which is a well graded wide road.
















WOW ! What a wonderful day.  Until next time, happy days and...











HAPPY TRAILS !

10 comments:

  1. I do believe we drove that same route in reverse! Isn't every mile just jaw droppingly beautiful!

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    1. Yes it is Lisa. There are lots of hikes off Slate River Road and Gothic Road so we will definitely head back that way.

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    2. Gorgeous photos !!! That's quite a high elevation for sure!

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    3. Thanks Jeri. Love those mountain rides...

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  2. Spectacular drive! Sure is a lot greener than the drives you've been doing:) That Emerald Lake is so pretty. Perfect log for lunch:) Aren't all the wildflowers gorgeous! Thanks for sharing:)

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    1. You would love this drive Pam...lots of places to stop and hike along the way!

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  3. What a wonderful drive and amazing scenery. Thanks for another fun tour.

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    1. You are very welcome George and Susie...

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  4. Love those little lakes - Emerald certainly lives up to its name. How fun to know all the names of the wildflowers. They're all so pretty!

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    1. I have a great Colorado wildflower guide...some of them I remember, others not!

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