It was the morning after an upslope winter storm that had dumped over a foot and a half of fresh snow
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The run on this particular day was from my doorstep in downtown Boulder, Colorado up to Chautauqua Park, and then up and over Green Mountain and down Bear Canyon, returning to Chautauqua and town via the classic Mesa Trail. This is a very standard mountain loop here in Boulder, but on this particular day it was the morning after a fruitful upslope winter storm that had dumped over a foot and a half of fresh snow on everything.
Normally, when I get out in the Flatirons it's to actually climb and scramble, linking together several of the rock formations in an outing. However, after a big storm like this, it's a challenge to merely make it to the top of the mountain and the primary objective becomes to just get out, experience the fresh beauty, and hopefully get a few first tracks, breaking trail before the rest of Boulder's extremely active population motivates.
A pre-dawn start from downtown Boulder, Colorado is rewarded with getting to catch the sunrise on the east-facing Flatirons.
Chautauqua meadow offers an expansive view of dawn's nascent glow over the city.
An early start often necessitates some trail breaking.
Well-traveled switchbacks gain elevation quickly in the Flatirons.
Boulder's iconic Third Flatiron is a popular climb and scramble, but today serves only as a breathtaking backdrop.
High on Green Mountain the route steepens and poles often become useful in such deep conditions.
The backside of the loop descends Bear Canyon.
The classic Mesa Trail provides the way back to Chautauqua and downtown Boulder.
Anton's winter running kit:
Photos: © Fredrik Marmsater
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Anton Krupicka is a member of the La Sportiva Mountain Running® Team.
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