Taking advantage of a (technical) day off, I decided to head out for some winter hiking fun. After oversleeping by several hours, I finally got on the road by 8:15. I breezed up the Fourmile creek rd, which is in impeccable shape! The Leavick ghost town:
Leavick is just how I remembered it from 6 years ago, complete with the creaking of the timbers in the wind. I inadvertently (missed the turnoff to the left because I didn't closely read the excellent route by Bill ) drove up very close to the Mt. Sherman summer trailhead:
Mt. Sheridan and Mt. Sherman After backtracking a bit, it was finally time to hike.
The day was absolutely clear and beautiful, although a bit breezy at times. Snowshoes are absolutely not needed, but I was happy to have my microspikes. I soon gained the first ridge, leaving the snow covered sections of the 4wd road when postholing became troublesome. The view of Horseshoe Mountain was captivating :
Horseshoe Mountain My first stop of the day, Peerless Mountain loomed benignly above me :
There is a myriad of 4wd roads and spurs leading up towards the saddle. I took the path of least resistance and passed by numerous abandoned mine sites. Here is the view towards the East from the saddle :
The view to the East from the saddle of Peerless and Horseshoe
Peerless was an easy side trip except for the increased howl of the wind. When the wind tracked from the North, it was not too bad. For the most part, it was a unrelentingly gusty West wind that froze me and threatened my balance. Ce qu'a vu le vent d'ouest!
There are numerous trail segments up the easy slope of Horseshoe and I soon arrived at the summit. I had thought about attempting the trifecta of Finnback Knob, but the snow covered connecting ridge looked very dubious. Next time. Here is the view towards the northern end of the Sawatch Range across the Arkansas valley :
The view from the summit of Horseshoe
After a quick trip back to my car, it was time to bid the Fourmile creek area adieu. This is a great hike at the moment, and would be a gentle introduction to "winter" hiking. Mt. Sherman :
Mt. Sherman and Sheep Mountain :
Sheep Mountain smile on approvingly.