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Rocky Mountain National Park, CO

Jul 30 - Aug 6, 2022 -- $1400 ★★★★, YOU CANNOT REGISTER FOR THIS TRIP YET AS DETAILS ARE NOT FINAL

SUMMIT LONG'S PEAK!


Everybody has heard of the incredible beauty of Rocky Mountain National Park, but few have experienced the wonders of the magnificent mountains up close. On this trip, you will summit 14,259' Long's Peak -- an iconic destination that everyone should do once in their lives. Longs Peak is amazing and rewarding but it is difficult and not for everyone. Please watch this video if you're considering the trip:


The park is host to a wide variety of plants and animals including black bear, elk, coyote, mule deer, moose, bighorn sheep, marmot, white tailed ptarmigan, blue grouse, and beaver as well as Colorado Blue Spruce, Quaking Aspen, Lodgepole Pine, Ponderosa Pine, Douglas Fir, and endless fields of redolent wildflowers.


Our trek begins at tourist-choked Sprague lake but we take 3 days to approach Long's Peak, hopefully staving off the effects of altitude. Staying hydrated will help. Along the way, we will approach and descend scenic backcountry trails which provide breathtaking vistas that car bound tourists just can't access.


We'll hike clockwise and after summiting, return via Glacier Gorge, beautiful in its own right.


The short Summer season is prime time to visit the Rockies, so why not join us?



Weather

Weather is always an important concern when hiking. Summer is the ideal time to hike in the rockies. Expect daytime hiking temperatures into the 70s and 80s and nighttime temperatures in the 40s & 50s. However, be prepared for the possibility of day temperatures into the high 80s and nights below freezing at elevation (possibly accompanied by a lot of wind). There are also ubiquitous afternoon thunderstorms (often with hailstorms) at high elevations that are to be avoided for safety (and comfort) reasons. Here are the historical weather averages Be prepared with sun protection and water containers that add up to 4 liters of capacity.



Probable Trip Leaders

Guides TBD


Cost

$1400 per person double occupancy. Here, double occupancy means that you will share a room with another participant during the 2 hotel nights. You will also be responsible for transportation to and from Denver International Airport (DEN), personal equipment, restaurant meals eaten off the trail and any gratuities for guides.


Covered expenses include 2 hotel nights, park entrance fees (bring a park pass if you have one), 6 days of trail meals, ground transportation to/from the parks, National Park permits and awesome guides.


Tipping: In order to keep our prices competitive with (and hopefully favorable to) other outfitters, we shamefully can’t pay our guides as much as we think they deserve. Like most other guiding services, we rely on the generosity of our participants to make up this shortfall by tipping the guides. While tips are not required or expected, if your guides have served you well, please consider a gratuity so they can continue living their extravagant lifestyles of eating powdered meals, sleeping in the dirt and pooping in smelly outhouses and small holes they've dug.



Difficulty

The trails through the Rockies often have good footing but elevation changes can be drastic. This implies more difficulty but also higher, unimpeded views. Furthermore, those arriving from lower elevations may have difficulty with the altitude. Our first day in Denver should help ... so will staying super hydrated, but it will still take a few days to fully acclimate. Distances will be kept below 11 miles per day.



Important Notes

The itinerary you see here is our proposed itinerary and may be changed by the park. The park begins awarding backcountry permits on March 1, 2022 so we may end up running this trip in a different part of the park and not be afforded the opportunity to summit Long's Peak at all.


There may be snow at higher elevations. Please be prepared for walking through an occasional snowfield or snow squall.


Rocky Mountain National Park requires us to carry Bear Canisters which can be cumbersome. However they are effective at protecting food plus you can sit on them. The park also requires wag bags (such as the Restop2) to pack out human waste at Glacier Gorge campsite. Fortunately, that is our final campsite of the trip.


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Packing List
Itinerary
Weather
Guides for this trip
Cost
Important Note
Difficulty (Please Read)
Packing List
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Itinerary


Saturday, July 30, 2022

Fly into Denver International Airport (DEN) or drive into Denver. The best time to arrive is between Noon-3PM. However, if you can save a substantial amount on your flight by arriving an hour or two later or earlier, then do so.


Take free airport shuttle to airport hotel (TBD)


Equipment shakedown


Make your own trail mix, Covid permitting


Your temperature is taken to check for possible Covid


"Before" body composition measurements taken


Go to Denver Flagship REI Store, 1416 Platte St, Denver, CO 80202, (303) 756-3100 for forgotten and last minute equipment purchase


Go out for dinner at a local restaurant, Covid permitting (dinner cost not included in trip cost)



Sunday, July 31, 2022

Second set of "before" measurements taken


Your temperature is taken to check for possible Covid


All the items that you won't bring on the trail will be set aside and put in storage.


Free breakfast at hotel


Fatpacking shuttle takes us to Beaver Meadows Ranger Station in Estes Park. You have about 20 minutes of unstructured time while guides do permitting paperwork.


If you have a National Park Pass, please bring it


We will either board a park shuttle bus or drive into the park at Sprague Lake, possibly the Park 'n' Ride


Begin hiking at Sprague Lake, elevation 8688'


Hike about 3.0 miles to Upper Wind River, elevation 8940'


Camp at Upper Wind River Campsite, elevation 8940'.


Miles today: 3.0. Total miles: 3.0


Possible bailout: Sprague Lake


Monday, August 1, 2022

Hike 2.7 miles to the Estes Cone Trail, elevation 10,250'


Drop packs and Day-Hike 1.2 round trip miles to the summit of Estes Cone, elevation 11,006'


Hike 0.9 miles to the Moore Park, elevation 9,760'


Camp at Moore Park, elevation 9760'.


Miles today: 4.8. Total miles: 7.8


Possible bailout: Long's Peak Trailhead


Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Hike 3.9 miles to Chasm Junction, elevation 11,550'


Hike 2.5 miles to Boulderfield, elevation 12,760'


Set up camp


Camp at Boulderfield 3 campsite, elevation 12,760'


Miles today: 6.4. Total miles: 14.2


Possible bailout: Long's Peak Trailhead


Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Awaken and leave camp early to summit before any afternoon thunderstorms


Day-Hike 2.4 round-trip miles to the summit of Long's Peak, elevation 14,259'. Congratulations!


Camp at Boulderfield 3 campsite, elevation 12,760'


Miles today: 2.4. Total miles: 16.6


Possible bailout: Long's Peak Trailhead


Thursday, August 4, 2022

Hike 8.3 miles to the Glacier Gorge campsite, elevation 10,000'


Set up camp


Day-Hike 2.5 round trip miles to Ribbon Falls / Black Lake, elevation 10,650'


Camp at Glacier Gorge, Campsite, elevation 10,000'


Miles today: 10.8. Total miles: 27.4


Possible bailout: Glacier Gorge Trailhead


Friday, August 5, 2022

Hike 3.2 downhill miles to Glacier Gorge Trailhead, elevation 9240'


End of Hike


Miles today: 3.2. Total miles: 30.6


Possible bailout: Glacier Gorge TH


Fatpacking shuttle takes us back to Denver hotel TBD


After measurements taken


Dinner and awards Ceremony (Dinner cost not included in trip cost)


This is the official end of the trip. You are welcome to spend the night at the hotel, however if you drove and would like to get on the road or if you flew and would like to schedule a late flight (or a red-eye if this is a West Coast trip) you can definitely do so.


Saturday, August 6, 2022

Free Hotel Breakfast


Free airport shuttle


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