The weekend before was sunny and gorgeous, like it always is in August in Colorado. But then the weather took a crazy turn. The prediction was a high of 47 degrees in Breckenridge, where were were headed. We planned on getting higher in elevation than Breckenridge, so we were planning for some chilly weather. It was raining in town, but we found more than that on the mountain.
We started in Keystone, planning on running up Keystone Mountain. The trail ended up being closed for the moment as they worked on some ski equipment, so we had to skip it this time. We'll come back for it some other time.
We headed off to Keystone Gulch, and found a fairly mellow trail. It was cool seeing the ski lifts and runs up close, with no snow on them. It was raining, though, and pretty chilly.
When we got to the spur, we crossed the creek and started up. As we climbed, the rain changed to snow. Snow! In August! It was even sticking on the trail and on the trees. It was crazy, but very cool to see.
We went through quite a few switchbacks in the trees, expecting to finally climb out. But then the spur just ended. We had quite a few vehicles, making it difficult to get everyone turned around. But we did it, and we were soon headed back down to the main trail.
We kept going on the main trail, following the gulch. Then the trail turned up the mountain, and we climbed. We soon ended up above timberline, and we found the buildings from the Erickson Mine. The trail had a couple of inches of snow on it, and the rocks underneath our tires were slippery.
Everyone found a place to stop, and we all got out to appreciate the scenery. It was gorgeous. And then the clouds disappeared and we were surrounded by blue skies and a warm sun. It still looked like it was raining below us, but we were in fabulous weather above the clouds.
We had a great lunch, all lined up along the road and facing the valley below us. Even though we were on a couple of inches of snow, it wasn't cold. We couldn't have asked for a more scenic and enjoyable lunch.
We soon headed back down, and as we descended we drove back into the bad weather. It was raining back in town, and it looked like it had never stopped. It was pretty cool to get out and above the bad weather. We headed off for Breckenridge and the rest of our trails for the day.