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Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ
I/we will be in Colorado staying near (city/town). Can you tell me of any good hikes nearby?
Unfortunately, since I don't know your physical abilities, goals, likes, dislikes, fears, tolerance to the environment, etc., I would be hard pressed to recommend any particular hike to you. Sorry. :
-( What I will suggest is for you to contact or stop by the United States Forest Service office in the area which you will be staying and ask for their recommendations. They are usually quite helpful and can provide you with up to date information. [See the list of Trip Reports
and Photo Essays
for links to USFS offices in the areas I have hiked (where available)]
Where else can I look for information when I get to town?
Stop by the local sporting goods or outdoor gear store. They are usually more than happy to sell you an inexpensive map and offer advice. You may even hear a local yarn or two!
When do you update the web site?
I try to update the site as soon as possible after completing a hike. The trip reports are usually online by the Tuesday following a weekend hike with the photos added on Wednesday or Thursday. Please note that this schedule is very much subject to change.
Why don't you state how long it takes you to complete these hikes in the trip reports?
People hike a different speeds. I am a fairly quick hiker and I don't want to mislead anyone as to how long it takes to complete these hikes. I include distances and elevations with my trip reports for you to estimate how long it will take you to complete the hike. For additional assistance, use the Hike Difficulty Calculator
(there is also a link to the calculator at the Trailhead
and at the bottom of each page).
How do you decide where you are going to hike?
I usually decide where I am going at the last minute as my outdoor activities are somewhat dictated by the weather. Sometimes it may be raining in one part of the state and the next mountain range over could be having a beautiful day. Guess where I'm headed ...
Can you be more specific?
Lots of times I have an area in mind and I just get in the car and drive. I usually have a map with me as well as a guide book (it doesn't really matter which one you use although some have different features than others). When in the area I will see something that looks like fun and make a mental note as to whether or not it looks climbable. I then check the book to see if there is any information on my proposed destination.
What if there is no trail?
Before I answer this I must remind you to TREAD LIGHTLY so as to not excessively damage the environment.
If there is no trail listed in my guide book, I try to scout the mountain from a distance (sometimes but not always using binoculars) to see if I think there is a safe route to the summit. I compare this visual information to my map (usually a topo map) and plan the route to my destination. Caution: I KNOW WHEN TO TURN BACK - DO YOU?
What are some reasons you would turn back or abandon your hike?
Basically any time I or any member of my hiking party is uncomfortable in a given situation. This could include but is not limited to: rain, lightning, sleet, hail, snow, excessive wind, cold temperatures, lack of daylight, exposure ("that's a long way down"), running out of food or water (rare for me), fatigue (also rare for me), I'm lost, or any other number of reasons.
Can you give me a hint on how to take realistic photos of the mountains?
Don't include too much sky in your photo (a common mistake). If you only leave a little bit of sky the Colorado Cobalt-Blue Sky
won't wash out and any mountains in the photo will appear bigger.
Why did you create this web site?
Because I wanted to share what I could of my experiences in the mountains - both for those that enjoy the same areas I have enjoyed and for those that will never be able to see the things that I have seen due to physical, logistical, or other reasons.