Every hike traveled I have learned something. Yesterday I learned a valuable lesson about land navigation. Specifically, I learned the importance of having an up to date map in the pack...
I took Monday off from work with the goal of hiking two summits; Mt Garfield (W0C/FR-040) and Tuckaway Mt (W0C/FR-134). I estimate it would be about a 10 mile hike roundtrip, but it ended up to be about 11.5 miles. I arrived at the 7 Bridges parking lot around 8:20 a.m. and hit the trail (Gold Camp Road) for about 3/4 mile until the creek and a sign for Trail 622 on the right, which begins the 7 Bridges trail. After you pass the 7th bridge the trail tracks up along the north side of the creek and through a narrow, loose gravel traverse until it bends to the right into another creek watershed. This is where my hike took a wrong turn.
The trail raises up into an aspen grove along this smaller creek. Trail 622A (unmarked) is the route I should have taken to get to Mt Garfield first but I ended up on a newly re-routed trail (668), and connected with Trail 701 which took me closer to Tuckaway Mt. This new trail was not on my map I recently purchased unfortunately. With no clear trail up Tuckaway from Trail 667 I navigated an approach straight up the south side (see red route in second picture below). Its steep but doable. Towards the top I came across a large stretch of boulders which made the final push a little easier, although I was careful to ensure the footing was secure.
I will let the route maps speak for themselves. I would like to warn anyone of taking the red route up Mt Garfield. The spine of this approach is hazardous with significant drops on either side. If I were to do this overland route again I would stay to the north of the mountain and approached from the NE to the summit.
All together it was a great adventure. I made it back to my car at 6:15 p.m. tired and dehydrated. I think I lost about seven pounds, but the next day I was itching to get back to the mountains again...
Safe hiking everyone!
|Approximately 4 miles to Mt Garfield from 7 Bridges parking lot|
|Approximately 5 miles to Tuckaway Mt from 7 Bridges parking lot (blue route)|
|My office location on Tuckaway Mt, looking west|
|Pikes Peak from Mt Garfield ascent.|
|My setup, KX3, random wire in Coleman laundry line reel.|
|From Mt Garfield looking east to Colorado Springs, Cheyenne Mt on right in distance.|
24 Oct 2016 Log: Tuckaway Mt., 7.033 MHz
24 Oct 2016 Log: Mt Garfield, 14.342 MHz