Monday, August 12, 2019

Creede Mines and the Hobbit Trail

Hiking day and we decided to hike past the mines on West Willow Creek from just north of Creede and then try the Hobbit Trail. We estimated that the round trip would be just over eight (8) miles and it ended up at just over nine (9) miles. We  really wanted a chance to see all the old mines outside of Creede and this hike did not disappoint.

Our route - just an out and back along West Willow Creek and then out and up the Hobbit Trail.

Ronnie, Nanette and Heather are all smiles as the clouds lifted this morning just at the start of our hike.

A small warming hut is just outside of town - used by the ice skaters in the winter - two small ponds are used for some old fashioned outdoor ice.

Walking the road up past the remnants of the Creede area silver mines.

Lots of old timber used to construct the various mine structures and chutes.

An amazing amount of work to build these structures in extremely steep terrain.

This road climbs gently and then pitches up to over 20% grades!

West Willow Creek...

Looking up the mountainside at more mines...

After about two plus miles along West Willow Creek we reached the Hobbit Trail. More of a steep old road bed - the trail would later resemble something you might have seen in the Lord of the Rings or the Hobbit.

Ronnie working his way along the boulder fields of the Hobbit Trail.

At the end of the Hobbit Trail you are rewarded with a nice vista overlooking Creede and the Rio Grande River Valley.

Ronnie and Nanette having lunch at the end of the trail.

Heather and Nanette posing at an overlook - yes it really drops off behind them!

More scrambling for Ronnie...

Walking back down West Willow Creek...

Parting shot - walking through the mines.