Some years it feels like Colorado goes straight from 90-degree temps to snow storms. But this year we’ve been fortunate with weeks full of 75-degree days with blue skies and light breezes- perfect for fall hikes.
A Different Season, a Different Trail
When we visited Lower Dadd Gulch earlier this summer, I hoped we would come back in the fall. It’s low enough in the Poudre Canyon to not worry about high elevation early snow and the trail is lined with aspens.
A trail takes on a whole new personality depending on the season. Streams that were impossible to cross in the spring, are a trickle in the fall. Shadeless trails that were sweltering in the summer are pleasant in cooler temps.
From Butterflies to Cow Patties
It’s become tradition for L to rename a trail and in the spring she coined Lower Dadd Gulch the “Butterfly Trail” due to the abundance of little Cabbage White butterflies all along the hike. But this time the evidence this trail is accessed by livestock was everywhere and thus renamed, “The Cow Toilet Trail.” Six year olds love bathroom humor.
Despite the poop, this was a great fall hike. Since we move at L’s pace, there were plenty of opportunities to stop under aspens and listen to the quaking leaves and admire the gold against the blue sky.
From Babies to Toddlers
And just as seasons come and go, my babies are growing and our hiking experience changes with them. Instead of snoozing in the carrier, C was wide-awake this hike, telling me to run as she bounced and laughed. She loved reaching out, running her fingers across the boulders and bark. She got out and played with her sister when we stopped by a creek for a snack and some rock throwing. We’ll see what next year brings. Will I still be able to haul C on my back? Will L complain less and make it more than a couple miles? I can’t wait to find out.
Don’t Hang up those Hiking Boots Just Yet
Although our weekends are filling up fast with farm visits, pumpkin carving parties, Halloween costume preparation, fall cleaning, leaf raking and all the other glorious fall activities, as long as the weather holds we’ll make time to get on the trails.
Find trail details and spring photos of Lower Dadd Gulch Trail on previous post.
What are your favorite fall hikes?