Rahwah to Creede, snowed anyway

taskswap

Very Active Member
Jul 9, 2018
523
379
Colorado
Over the weekend I was going to take two friends into Shipman Park. It's a beautiful roadless park in Northern CO that reminds me "Estes without the people, buildings, or roads." I was there last year hunting but it was unseasonably warm and there was a large fire nearby in WY that pushed a lot of animals further South than I was at - I didn't see any scat newer than a week old or more while scouting.

This year I thought by mid-June it would be just gorgeous. My friends and I planned the trip for a few weeks, since they've done a few 14ers but never any real back-country backpacking. (I wanted to make sure they had all the right gear since we'd be off grid for several days.) Excitement was high for weeks, but just before we left there was a severe weather warning, with snow falling at similar altitudes in Estes, hail and lightning predicted, etc. (This was June 21 mind you, but that's Colorado for you...)

Anyway, we decided on a last minute change of plans and I noticed Wheeler Geologic Formation, near Creede, CO. I hoped that by driving South a ways we'd get "under" the storm, and we did... mostly. It was a tough hike in through driving snow and sleet, and temps still hit 23F overnight, but it was beautiful and we had a great time.

There must be some huge bulls roaming around there because I saw some of the biggest-pellet scat piles I've ever seen in the state. Some were the size of gobstoppers. Looks like it takes 5-6 points to draw for bull there but maybe I'll get lucky in the next few years...

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taskswap

Very Active Member
Jul 9, 2018
523
379
Colorado
Couple of you pointed out the two scat piles were moose. I wasn't hunt scouting, so the best pic I had of elk scat wasn't really as impressive as that dual-pile one of moose there. I was just dumping in a few pics of general interest and figured you'd like it. I see moose all over these days but it's the first time I've seen two side by side piles so close together, they roam so much. There was a ton of all kinds of sign there: deer, elk, moose, coyote, and even some mountain lion too.

Here's another pic or two that were fun. This elk scat wasn't as big as the biggest I saw, I just didn't get a good pic of it. I sure felt like that breccia slide looked like a snail, what do you say?

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