Hi my friends!! Alright, I was able to get up there and provide some photos and thoughts for everyone considering this option! I’m going to be as honest as possible, so you know all the facts and can make an educated choice!
This is the view from the lower lot, headed up to the top top of the pass, where the road starts. The top lot is right behind that tall spruce you see close to the center. It took us about 5 minutes to walk up, but the elevation is very real and I think something for all to consider more than I may have initially thought! …. That said, and I’ll address this more below, I do see people parking behind the “brake check” zone more than once, so I think we could fit a decent few cars up there which would cut this out. I honestly would probably suggest we try to drop as many people off there as we can, and then park any other cars lower and have less people hike up to the upper lot. (Kyrie– this could be a total non-issue by August as well). The elevation factor is one I have seen folks struggling with this season more than in the past, and so I think airing on caution could be smart!
This is the view from around top of the lot.
An example of cars parking behind the brake-check zone!
This is the road we walk up to get onto the ridge, as you can see its wide! Last bits of snow I would bet will be gone this week or next.
More road– not steep as you can see, but I did realize that that elevation is likely going to feel way harsher to you guys who don’t live at 6k elevation to begin with! I think that’s a factor– My mom who is 63 and a normal person (not a regular exerciser other than walking) did it, but we were both out of breath, not to the point of dying or anything though. She lives out here for 1.5 years, just for reference. I would say if we have members who aren’t in awesome shape or are smokers, we may want to think about this. That elevation is going to be a kicker for them I think, big time. If we do have folks in that boat (or grandparents that this will be too hard for) let’s consider a location that will allow us to drive straight up (Curtis Canyon, potentially signal or shadow but I need to look into that more– Ill email you about that directly Kyrie!)
So, this is about where the road ends. These are the radio/cell towers I mentioned and they’ve been working on, just so you know!
This would be spot #1: It’s the easiest to get to by far– took us about 20 minutes tops from the upper lot. The view is great, the ground is flat and would allow for more folks to stand around. Downsides below:
this is back and to your left if you are at the top spot. That said, I can easily shoot around that if you love this view. There are quite a few spots in the park with buildings or park stuff also (or parking) so I’ve gotten solid at working around those!
This is directly behind you at that spot– obviously not gorgeous, but again, this is the quickest spot to access and something that I can work around if needed!
If everyone is game to keep going this is the trail to the other spot.
You could also go up here, or to the spot under this one– you’d have to scramble a few feet up more steep area off-trail, but it’s truly like 20 feet or so, so not a ton. Again, if folks aren’t great on balance, bad idea haha.
This is looking at these spots obviously, not the view– that’s below!
View from those spots.
Say hi to my mom 🙂
Sydney– this is the only snowy spot to cross. I wouldn’t even be surprised if it’s gone by the end of the week.
trail to the best spot, but a littler harder to access.
Wildflowers are definitely starting! Many in bloom, many more to come!
This part the terrain starts to flatten far more, which makes these spots more options for a ceremony!
Looking out from this farther ridge & valley area.
Spots all along here could work!
This is directly up from where I was standing on that last shot. Again, off-trail but a pretty short walk and not as steep (even as it looks honestly).
Was thinking that spot between sets of trees could be good too!
here’s another thing: I’ve had a few couples that were obsessed with this view– this is right out from the parking lot and fairly flat for a little bit. The nice things are the view, an how accessible and easy this is. Downside, road is right nearby and you may have traffic noise (probably slightly less later in the evening, but I would be still some.)
That’s the view looking behind me from that last shot. And my mom again. Hey mom!