As “luck” would have it, I managed to commit one of the last perfect biking days of the fall (beautiful and sunny with temp around 70) to hiking with a couple friends. Oh well, hanging out with friends is good, and I needed to get in my token yearly hike anyway. The Sister ™, the avid hiker, recommended Grey Rock, one of the most popular hikes in the Fort Collins area. Assured that “you have to hike this at least once if you live in Fort Collins” and that it was worth the hike for the views at the top, we headed up Poudre Canyon to the Grey Rock trail. Sadly, I lost my companions to a combination of equipment failure and ambivalence somewhere before 2 miles in. There was no way I was abandoning the hike at this point, so I soldiered on in a solo mission to the top. I made it quickly to the base of Grey Rock and headed off for the last .75 miles to the top. This would be the base.
The last leg, though short, seemed to take as long as the previous 2+ miles. I lost the trail for a few minutes before spotting the helpful cairns that would guide me as I scrambled around and over rocks to the top. The requisite “me at the summit” shot.
And, The Sister ™ didn’t lie — the views are pretty good.
I hung out at the top for a few minutes, but the wind was making exposure on high rocks uncomfortable, and I really didn’t want to ruin the day by having to put on a jacket, so I followed another group out and headed down. I quickly lost them and made good time down the mountain passing several groups of climbers making their descent as well. My knees did not take well to scrambling back down the rocks, but overall the hike was fairly easy.
And, if you have a keen eye, you might have noticed the storm coming in at my back in the summit shot. Yes, today was 35 degrees, windy, rainy, and snowy.