longrunsolutions.typepad.com > Gore Range - Willow Lakes - High Mountain Fishing

a. Rock Creek Trailhead

a. Rock Creek Trailhead

This is the trailhead where we accessed the Gore Range. The Rock Creek Trailhead is around 10 miles north of Silverthorn on Hwy 9. The turn off is directly across from the Blue River Camp Ground.


b. Gore Range Trail

b. Gore Range Trail

Most of our hiking was spent on the Gore Range Trail. This is a well maintained trail that runs 35 to 45 miles along the Gore Range.


c. On the trail

c. On the trail

Just another picture on the trail.


d. Camp 1 beauty

d. Camp 1 beauty

Wow. This was the view from our campsite after a 3.5 mile hike on Friday afternoon. Truly awe inspiring.


e. Lilly Pad Lake

e. Lilly Pad Lake

This photo is again at our Camp 1 lake. We named it Lilly Pad. I loved it because to me the lake looked like a pond in Minnesota or Wisconsin, but the mountains in the background are all Colorado.


f. Downed trees galore!

f. Downed trees galore!

About where this picture was taken we ran into another backpacker. He informed us that up ahead things were 1000 times worse. I was hoping he was exagerating, unfortunately he was not. Thank God for good maps and a GPS or we would never had made it to the Willow Lakes.


g. Dillon Reservoir

g. Dillon Reservoir

Again, for those of you familiar with the area, this picture is of Dillon Reservoir with Grays Peak and Torries Peak way out there in the background. What a pleasure it was to see Dillon Res. full of water! That has not always been the case in recent years.


h. Willow or Salmon?

h. Willow or Salmon?

The fork in the trail. Everyone agrees that the real prize on this trip is the Willow Lakes. But, seeing we had come all this way, we couldn't resist hiking the mile or so down to Salmon Lake for our lunch break. As the next picture shows, it was well worth it.


i. Salmon Lake and the peaks

i. Salmon Lake and the peaks

A beautiful picture of Salmon Lake. Be sure to look at this one full size. Between the tall middle pines, for those of you familiar with Colorado mountain peaks, is Greys and Torries Peaks.


j. Flowers

j. Flowers

Spring on the high mountain tundra. July 8th and the flowers are in full bloom. Beautiful.


k. More Flowers

k. More Flowers

I wish I could do this flowers justice. Guess you had to be there.


l. Mountain Goats

l. Mountain Goats

These guys appeared surprised to see us, but not too scared. It was very cool. We spent about 5 minutes with them just below Lower Willow Lake.


m. Three generations of Mountain Goats

m. Three generations of Mountain Goats

Pretty neat shot here if you look closely. In the foreground is a one year old. The background has mostly adults, except if you look real close next to the back center goat, there is a very little baby. I don't know when goats have there young, but this fellow was tiny, fuzzy and cute....and mama goat was not letting us get any closer.


n. Lower Willow

n. Lower Willow

Check out the remnant snow on the right side of the picture.


o. Dinner at Middle Willow Lake

o. Dinner at Middle Willow Lake

My better half


p. Camp 2 out back

p. Camp 2 out back

This is the view out the back of the tent from camp 2. Wow, wow, wow. 270 degrees of mountains with a beautiful lake out front. Heaven?


q. To the left of camp 2

q. To the left of camp 2

This is actually above camp 2 by about 300 feet. Corina and I climbed to the top of the peak.


r. Another shot out back of camp 2

r. Another shot out back of camp 2

Upper Willow Lake is just behind the pine trees in this shot.


s. Out front of camp 2 - Middle Willow Lake

s. Out front of camp 2 - Middle Willow Lake

Our front yard for the night and chalk full of brook trout. I caught 30 fish in a little over two hours. The little area of "ponded" stream that you will see from above in some pictures that follow was productive as well. I caught two at one time (I was using two flies) on the pond.


t. Upper Willow Lake

t. Upper Willow Lake

This shot is from 800 feet or so above Upper Willow. Upper will is truly a classic mountain lake.


u. The Willow Lakes

u. The Willow Lakes

Upper is on the right, Middle is below center, I'm not honestly sure what the one in the background is called. Also, Corina is gingerly picking her way back down if you look closely


v. Williams Fork Range

v. Williams Fork Range

This is a picture back to the east. The closest ridge is across Hwy. 9 and part of the Williams Fork Range.


w. Top of the mountain

w. Top of the mountain

From 1300 feet above camp two, beyond the blond babe, is the view to the right of our tent at camp 2. Some how I neglected to get a picture to the right from camp.


x. What a view

x. What a view

I don't have any idea what these peaks are, but if you could see through the cliffs behind our tent, this would be the view. Out of the total climb of 1300 feet, the last 1000 feet was covered in .44 miles. Trust me on this.....that is a lot of up.