Friday, September 6, 2013

Hiking Ice Lake and Biking the Colorado Trail with Kids

Photo dump time.  (Argh...my photos all didn't downsize.  Oops.  Oh well.  Now they're taking up too much space in my online file.  But I don't have time to try and downsize them again. Such is life.)

Labor Day weekend found us on a family adventure in Colorado.  We took off with a destination in mind, but no real plans as to where to stay.  After hours of driving, we lucked out.  We stayed our first night on Molas Lake at the Molas Lake campground.  Our next 2 nights were in the South Mineral Creek Campground right next to the creek.

We hiked the Ice Lake Hike near Silverton.  It was near South Mineral Creek campground.  We actually left from our camper and came back to wade in the creek.  We did the hike last year on our family vacation, but without kids.  We figured the kids were ready for it this year.  They're great little hikers.  We knew they'd love this hike with all the water features.  And we were right, they loved it!  It's a nearly 8 mile hike round trip with over 2000ft of elevation gain and you go up over 13,000ft high. (Seriously, Google "Ice Lake Silverton")  When you encounter Ice Lake for the first time after climbing and climbing, it's like the angels come out and sing "AHHHHHH!!"  Someone might have tried that, but they didn't sound like an angel.  *ahem, cough, cough*
















We almost turned around when we got to the steep part because there were some loud claps of thunder.  Actually we did turn around and told the kids we would try the climb again the next day.  But after a few minute it looked like the storm was moving in a different direction and we continued our ascent and made it to the lake.  Thank goodness!  My legs were killing me after this hike, I don't think I would have been excited to try it again.  It is a beautiful hike and totally worth the effort!




We packed for rain, cold, and warm.  We had lots of food and water, plus a water bottle that purifies water if we needed extra.  Hiking poles are definitely recommended on this hike.  I think I got so sore because my pack was full. 


When we got back to the campsite we the kids, plunged into the creek by our trailer.  Then we headed into Silverton for dinner and ice cream.  Back at the campsite Chewy and I rested while the boys hopped on their bikes and biked up the forest road near the campground. 




The next day we biked the Colorado Trail from Molas Pass.  Molas Pass is beautiful.  You can pull off of the road to see the views.  And that's where we parked to start our mountain biking adventure.  We went out about 4.5 miles and back the 4.5 miles.  Not bad for an 8-year-old on his own bike and a 6-year-old on a trail-a-bike.  There was some serious climbing on this ride.  The boy wasn't much liking the climbing towards the end.  There was a lot of use of the inhaler by the boy this day and the girl the day before.  And a lot of resting until they were ready to push on or turn around.  Allergies were hitting Biker Boy, Chewy, and Scooter pretty badly.  Me, not so much....I'm worse in the spring along with Scooter.  (Mental note to call our asthma and allergy doc for more allergy testing...shots for the boy and first round of testing for the girl.) 





Back at the campground (Biker Boy biked back from Molas Pass while the kids and I went in the vehicle!) we soaked in the freezing cold creek and went to view the pretty waterfall near the campground. 









Then we let the kids roast hotdogs for their first time ever.  And probably their last.  I was so sick that night.  As in running to the bathroom, nauseous, alternating between sweating profusely and shivering uncontrollably, and I had to stay in the car for awhile so as to not disturb everyone in our small camper.  By the morning I was miraculously better...after feeling horrible during the night.  I blame the hotdogs and beans. 


Oh...and some little dog celebrated his 6th birthday.  He got part of a hot dog and some banana bread.  And lots of love.  Plus he got to hike and mountain bike, which he loves doing.  Not to mention he jumped our of his pack while biking and landed on the back of a St. Bernard.  (Someone forgot to pack his harness...oops).  Lucky dog. 


We packed up Labor Day and hit up Durango Mountain Resort for a few fun activities before heading home.  Alpine slides and mini golf. 





And that, in a nutshell, is what we did over Labor Day weekend.  What did you do?

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