I finally got back into the Granite Chief this week for three days, going in at Powderhorn Trailhead which is just west of Barker Pass. Fall colors are coming, but the aspen trees which are often the brightest are just starting, and the vine maple seems subdued this year, as likely to be pale white or pale yellow as bright yellow. I don’t think there have been any freezes since August, and though the calendar says fall, the days were still summer, quite warm. And the mornings refreshingly cool. I did quite a bit of exploring, checking out Little Powderhorn and Laddie’s Cove, the lower end of the Five Lakes Creek gorge, and the mesa between Powderhorn and Little Powderhorn canyons.
I had an enjoyable four day backpack from Powderhorn Trailhead, through Powderhorn Valley, to Shanks Cove and Grayhorse Valley to Whiskey Creek Camp and return. I was planning on getting into Picayune Valley, where I’ve not been yet, but lost a day off the trip and couldn’t fit it in. Next time! Continue reading