High and Lonesome Redux

A classic Colorado backpacking loop in the Indian Peaks Wilderness with d-low.


My buddy d-low is a newly minted father.  Weekends are no longer strictly about the outdoors but also about working in the yard, helping to maintain his household and the day-to-day activities involved in raising a child with his someone Wendy.

As with me, d-low works a job that can be fast paced and stressful at times. Also, as with me, he needs time spent  in the mountains to decompress, recover and rejuvenate after working a job he calls The Crisis Center (I call where I work “The Salt Mine“).

So, once a month my good friend takes off into the backcountry and enjoys a night out in the high country.

He invited me to tag along last weekend for a favorite backpacking trip of his.  It would be the classic Devil’s Thumb Loop in the Indians Peaks Wilderness. Alpine lakes, three passes and two crossings of the divide. A great weekend jaunt. One we also enjoyed last year.


The backpacking trip started if overcast weather at the 4th of July Trailhead.


As we climbed over Arapaho Pass the rain and wind rolled in.

By the time we reached Caribou Pass, the rain was really coming down.



As we climbed down the trail, the weather improved and we entered the woods and enjoyed the calmer weather.


We hooked into the CDT and made our way on this venerable trail in a gorgeous open meadow.


Eventually we arrived at Devil’s Thumb Park and made our way to a campsite at treeline.

The sunset reminded me a little bit of ones I’ve seen in the southern Appalachians.


Looking at the previous year’s trip report, looks like I took the photo from the almost identical spot! 🙂

The following morning, we made our way to the divide.

Our way was made down the trail and to the lakes.

Eventually we made it to Diamond Lake and enjoyed some last views before making the final two miles back to the car.

Looking to S. Arapaho Peak

We made it back to the car, sat down to drink a beer with the S. Arapaho Ridge above us and concluded another trip in the Colorado backcountry.


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Additional notes

I can no longer recommend the BBQ place. The brisket sandwich with Carolina mustard sauce was good but we ended up waiting 1.5 hrs total for food without an explanation or any updates (45 minutes waiting on the deck followed by 45 minutes once we placed our food order). The place did not look to be that busy.  Every place has an off day, but similar has happened there to me before. Consider the 1st Street Pub (simple, but good, pub grub)  across the street instead.   Brewed on-site beer is wonderful..but waiting 1.5 hrs after a hike for food was difficult. 🙂

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