Treasure Mountain gem
August 21, 2009
What a joy it was to join one of the Wilderness Workshop’s Hidden Gems hikes up Treasure Mountain recently, ably led by wildflower author Karin Teague. I somehow thought I knew all the splendid hikes, having lived in these parts for 34 years, but I had missed this one.
Our group crossed the icy Crystal River at the Old Mill long before the sun was on it and ascended through a steep fantasy forest until leveling at Bear Basin into waist-high wildflowers. We followed a faint trail next to granite slabs where sheets of snowmelt cascaded. Behind us, across the Crystal River Valley, we looked straight at the massive West Face of Snowmass Peak and Trail Rider Pass. From the summit ridge at 13,200 feet, we looked down to the Yule Lakes in the Ragged Wilderness.
If there was ever a place that should be included into wilderness, this is one. For our enjoyment, and more importantly for its own intrinsic worth, this pristine high-mountain basin should be designated wilderness for all time to come. I urge you all to support the Wilderness Workshop in its endeavors to include these Hidden Gems.
To learn about the other proposed Gems and ways to help, check out whiteriverwild.org.
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