Thursday, June 07, 2007

Try these getaways

Are you like me - so ready for a weekend (even a night!) away you're ready to burst!?

Check out Friday's Out There section (well, you'll have to do it Friday morning). Dave compiled a list of quick getaways. These are tranquil spots with trailheads within a hour's drive of Springs downtown.

Use the pack light tips from last week, grab a friend and a couple of cold ones, and JUST GO!

OK, OK. Here's a tease, in case you can snag a day off Friday (it's supposed to be gorgeous):

Round trip: 4 miles (with 4WD vehicle)

One of the many hidden delights in Rampart Range, this secluded canyon, where Monument Creek is born, is an easy way for hikers near Monument to get away in a spot without off-roading.

To get there: From I-25 take exit 161 at Monument. Drive west through the town of Monument about 0.7 miles to Mitchell Avenue. Turn left and drive about 0.7 miles to Mount Herman Road. Turn right and drive about 5 miles. The road will turn to gravel and become slightly rough. Drive less than a quarter-mile past the trailhead to Mount Herman trailhead to a pull-off on the right that is the start of Forest Trail 715.

The walk: Walk north up a broad, steep trail to a saddle in less than a quarter-mile. Drop north of the saddle on an obvious singletrack trail that winds down into a lush valley. In about 1.5 miles, the trail enters a long meadow along Monument Creek. Look for camping spots in the aspen.

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