Every time I head to the mountains I find a new adventure. I’ve been to Leadville, Colorado plenty of times, yet it never gets old. This time my friends Jason, Heather, and I left late Friday night and drove to Twin Lakes. The goal—sunrise stand up paddleboarding and pretty views of fall foliage—we found both.
There are two things that will get me up before sunrise: alpenglow and a powder day. Maybe, I should now add paddleboarding. Despite the chilly fall temperatures waking up early was well worth it. Quietly paddling across the clear lake with the sunrise in the east and alpenglow and fall colors in the west was stunning. I felt glad that I could catch one last Alpine Sup adventure, with Heather, before it gets too cold.
After a yummy breakfast (thanks Jason) we set our sights on Independence Pass for a little climbing. The temperatures were warm, almost hot, and the fall colors were perfect. We choose an easy multi-pitch climb up Monitor Rock. Some of the climbing was so easy that we didn’t need to rope-up. Even though it was easy and barely 5th class, the exposure made me nervous. The art of staying calm and breathing when things get a bit scary can always be carried over to situations outside of climbing. So, in a way, it felt good to get a little scared.
We made our way back to the car midday, and rather than turning around we decided on the scenic route, west. Driving a winding mountain road, with yellow aspens on both sides of the road, we headed towards Aspen.
We got home late Saturday night and still had an entire day to spare before heading back to work—Colorado adventures really are the best!
Photos by Jason Gebauer Photography