Saturday, January 30, 2021
Cherokee Park Road / County Road 80c

Some folks were looking to visit trails up near me - so let's go!  The long east-west line between US-287 and "Four Corners" is county road 80c. From the pink dot #2 westward is "no winter maintenance" (no plowing). There are forest trails and we'll check out some of those as well. The group traveled to the west end, passing trails here and there, with the intent of checking trails as we returned east. One of the guys in the group and I broke off at spot #4 for a different route home.

The weather was a nice twist - a bit of grey sky, spits of snow with large snowfall on the horizon, with windows of sun. The wind was up but not too crazy.

Trail sections 1 & 2

#1, starting at the south end, has us jumping up on a bit of a ridge with wide views. Right about where yellow dot #4 is located were trees across the trail and we turned around. We winched one tree off of the trail - but shorterly thereafter a large bunch of fallen tree met us and we turned around.

#2 was a short spur that ended in deep snow. I gave some of the deep snow a try - at the first stuck area I was able to back out - with a fair bit of work - while the second stuck had my right rear tire sitting next to a fallen tree. I didn't wish to cut the sidewall on the tire so another jeep winched the rear end sideways a bit and then pulled me back - good, easy, done and no ruined tire.

Spot #3 was classic forest trail. Logging road and private property access road.

Heading north on US-287 out of Fort Collins nearing Ted's Place

County road 80c gravel

...and then to the no-winter-maintenance section.

There were about three of this type of road condition - water that would normally flow below the road had a frozen passageway causing it to flow over the road - causing a large sheet of ice. One of the jeep's in the group came too close to dropping off of the road and onto their side.

After I went across, here's #2 - with a bit of downslope slide - rear tires visible behind the fronts.

And #3 (there are five vehicles today) - early into the crossing and already at the center of the road - a bit too close to the low side...

Uncontrolled slide and the edge is near (last pic for me - I was going for the winch line...)

The result of the slide (still on the tires) which was good as the owner had just put a new hard top on the jeep and it'd be sad to have it be broken.
Link to a picture of it

Another water overflow

With a hole in the clouds for some blue sky

The road alternated from clear (above pic) to snow covered

We just visited the west end of 80c (Four Corners) in the Laramie River Valley and now we're heading east and will check out some of the side trails.

By chance, I caught an odometer moment though I missed the perfect number by 0.3 miles.

The first side trail

I ended up first at one junction. Someone had been here cutting fallen trees - that was nice of'm!  But then they gave up and we came to a tree across the trail. I, with another gent, winched it clear. Continuing on the trail I found another large bunch of trees on the trail and we tossed in the towel and turned around.

Just the right amount of snow!

Heading out from the downed trees section back to 80c

Click for a larger size
Looking west towards the Laramie River Valley - good snowfall center to left with a bit of blue sky

End of the road for spur #2. Deep snow and I can't move forward. It was work backing out. I wasn't worried as others, with winches, were nearby.

Back to 80c to visit the #3 trails section.

This section of trail was a mix of logging access and private property access.

A logged section with new trees coming in.  `just about Christmas Tree size.

The heaviest bit of snowfall for the day.

And back to sun

One of the guys in the group and I decided to drive one additional section of road - one that was in a shaded valley. While snow covered and slick, it wasn't any significant hinderance. Taking that road lead us to Red Feather Lakes - this was on the way.

Back on asphalt with setting sun. The days are getting longer - summer's approaching!