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Double-Digit Mileage Hike

We finally did it. We hiked double-digit mileage, something neither of us has ever done. We tried to do this hike a few weekends ago but the weather didn't hold out of us, so we put off this hike until Labor Day weekend instead. The day started out with us realizing that our hiking clothes weren't clean because we hadn't done laundry this weekend yet. I'm not sure how this isn't more of a problem since we often hike on the first day of the weekend, but we quickly remedied this problem by washing the clothes by hand and throwing them into the dryer while we got ready. A little while later we loaded up Katie's car and hopped in, already leaving later than we wanted while we waited for the clothes to mostly dry. After Katie put her key in the ignition, we realized our hike would be delayed even further since her car didn't start... 30 minutes later and some quick diagnostics with a multimeter and repairs using baking soda, water, and a toothbrush, we got the battery terminal cleaned off and the car started right up. Although frustrating since we had somewhere to go, having this happen on a weekend when I could actually fix it is preferred over her trying to start her car on a workday since I always leave for work before her. We planned to leave the house around 8:30 for this hike but actually ended up leaving more than an hour late and got to the trailhead at 11. But at least our hiking plans weren't completely thwarted.

Today was an odd day for weather over the Cameron's Peak area - zero chance of rain. Usually, this is a good thing, particularly since we were doing such a lengthy hike, but the weather was also forecasted to hit the mid 70's right in the middle of our hike. We hiked directly through the Cameron's Peak burn scar area so we knew we were in for sunny trails with no shade, and we wouldn't get any help from the clouds with that zero percent chance for rain in the forecast. The burn scar area wasn't all that nice to hike through because of the lack of shade and because there isn't a lot of interest in that type of scenery. We did see some cool mushrooms and some neat patterns on burnt trees that we'd never seen before, but overall it was just hot and uncomfortable almost the whole way to the lake. About a mile from the lake we left the burn scar and that's when we really started enjoying the hike.

We were a few hundred feet above the lake when the lake came into view on the hike which gave us a fantastic aerial view of the lake before descending to it. This view made hiking through the burn scar and the heat worth it. The 5+ mile hike to the lake took us about two and a half hours and about two hours to get back. We were at the lake for about an hour for a total hiking time of almost five and a half hours for this 11-mile hike. Overall the views were good enough that we weren't disappointed, but we've had much better experiences hiking in other areas and we feel like a hike with this much effort (distance) should have better views during the majority of the hike. Because of this, I don't think we will come back to hike anytime soon.

One of our New Year resolutions was to beat one of our hiking stats that we did last year. Since we're now back on track, I don't feel quite as bad restating how we're doing, and I really felt like I owed posting an update since the last time I posted about these goals was February. Below is our hiking stats from last year, which can be found on the hiking page.

Hike Count Distance Hiking Time Elevation Gain
45 154.8 miles 85hr 56min 32,312 feet
Last years hiking stats (2021)

Here's our current year to date statistics:

Hike Count Distance Hiking Time Elevation Gain
19 102.93 miles 54hr 8min 22,134 feet
Year to date hiking stats (Through Labor Day)

We just started the month of September which as of September 4th is 68% of the way through 2022. If I compare 2021 to 2022, you can see (below) that we're above 68% only for elevation gain - but that's all that matters since our New Year resolution is to just beat one of our statistics from last year (although this year is far from over).

Hike Count Distance Hiking Time Elevation Gain
42.2% 66.5% 63.0% 68.5%
2022 progress benchmarked against 2021 as the goal.

To no surprise, we're far behind in the number of hikes, but we knew we wouldn't come anywhere close to surpassing our 45 hikes from last year since last year we had two hiking trips planned. We're not that far off from being on track for total distance which we're only 1.8 miles behind where we should be at this point in the year comparing ourselves to our 2021 selves. We're 4 hours behind on hiking time, but I would consider us being behind where we were at last year a good thing as long as we meet or exceed what we did in distance last year (because that means we hiked at a faster pace).

Trailhead Location
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11.18 mi 5.3 hrs 10,747 ft 1,850 ft
View Graph
Amanita Mushroom
The Rawah
Zebra Wood
Out of the Burn Zone
Blue Lake
Over the Bridge