Our second trail of the day, Metberry Gulch, is about half-way through the Cedar Mountain Road trail. Finding the trail is really easy and well-marked.
The seasonal gate has seen better days, though. The gate at the entrance is mangled beyond repair. Someone must have been a little upset when they came upon the closed gate. Things like this are sad to see when so many volunteers spent so many hours hard at work so this trail could be reopened after the Hayman Fire.
As we traveled down the trail crossing logs and a little bridge it became very obvious that a lot of work had to be done to open the gulch after the fire. Erosion really took its toll on the trail. There were several areas where devices were built to control run-off.
Most of the trail is pretty smooth, but we did come upon a little rock outcropping with a little mud and water mixed in. Walt took the line to the right, getting a lot of flex from his suspension. Mark, Gary, and Roger took the easier lines down the center and left side. A short while later we arrived at the top of the big hill. We all got out to look at it before heading down. Walt and Gary were a little disappointed because the hill did not seem to be as challenging as it used to be before the fire. The hill used to be wider, but it now has cables running down each side to keep vehicles on the narrower trail. We had no issues getting down the hill, and we watched each other go down the Rock Slab with very little spotting needed.
In no time, we were down at the bottom looking at the South Platte River. It was sad to see that the cabin that used to be on the left side burned down in the Hayman Fire. We decided to have lunch there while a big rock that we named the "Big-Eyed Monster" looked down on us.
After a relaxing lunch we started back up the trail. The Rock Slab and the big hill were fun to go back up. We all did it easily without lockers. Before the fire, the big hill always had the reputation of changing from year to year. In some years the hill was more difficult than it was in other years. Gary and Walt wondered if it will continue to change now that improvements have been made to the trail. Only time will tell.
We did not waste any time on the way back out. After all, we still needed to complete Cedar Mountain Road and check out Phantom Creek.
Reports from Other Days: 4
Use the arrows or dots to flip through the previews of the other reports for Metberry Gulch. Click one of them to read more and see all of the photos from that day.