Saturday, August 9, 2014

My Favorite Hike, Spruce Creek Trail

July 14-15, 2014

Richard Stevens:

During these two days, Bryan Ehlmann and I explored one of my favorite hikes in Colorado.  I have visited the Spruce Creek Trail (Mohawk Lakes, Waterfall and Pacific Peak) over 36 times in the past 20 years.  Wildflowers are in bloom in July and many of the mountain species line the trail and waterfalls.  Columbines were plentiful (Colorado State Flower).

The box canyon at the top is a pleasant, calm, isolated place to escape the hordes of people back in Denver.  Plenty of birds are around to peak a birders interest.

Over the two days, we found the following:

White-tailed Ptarmigan --above upper Mohawk lake (Stevens:Ehlmann) first 7/15
Brown-capped Rosy Finch (28) --pacific tarn lake (Stevens:Ehlmann) first 7/14-15
American Three-toed Woodpecker (5) (Stevens:Ehlmann) first 7/14-15
Boreal Owl (2 heard) --south of Mohawk falls (Stevens:Ehlmann) first 7/14-15
Flammulated Owl (2) --south of upper parking lot (Stevens:Ehlmann) first 7/14
Northern Pygmy-Owl (2) --north of upper parking lot (Stevens:Ehlmann) first 7/14
Dusky Grouse (2) --south of upper parking lot (Stevens:Ehlmann) first 7/14
Williamson's Sapsucker (pair) --north of upper parking lot (Stevens:Ehlmann) first 7/14

A four-wheel drive is required to get to the upper parking area.  Otherwise, it takes a four-mile hike to get to this parking area.  The climb to the box canyon is another couple of miles and not for those out of shape.  The views along the way and at the top are spectacular as the box canyon is bordered by Pacific Peak and Mount Helen.

No comments: