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James Peak, Gilpin County, Colorado - 6th July 2003

My long awaited trip to James Peak took place today. This was my third attempt as snow always seemed to be blocking my path. We left my house about 6:00 am and arrive at James Peak about 8:00 am. We hiked up to James Peak Lake first, and then back tracked to take the trail up to Little Echo Lake. What a beautiful place to visit.

James Peak looking up from Mammoth Creek Basin, 7:30 a.m. and what a beautiful view!
A zoomed view.
Arapahoe Peak.
Derek unloading his gear from my car. Kingston Peak can be seen at the upper right.
Arapahoe National Forest sign laying on the ground, and no I didn't knock it down.
Looking back towards my car as we hiked in, the city of Denver can be seen in the distant haze.
Our goal was to get to this lake called "Little Echo Lake."
We hiked across several of these patches of snow.
View of James Peak looking slightly northwest.
Looking northwest towards James Peak.
James Peak again.
The ponds below James Peak Lake. These were the two largest ponds, there was so much water everywhere, that pools of water were all around us.
Small waterfall, below James Peak Lake.
Looking back east, we could see the grueling hike back to the car.
Just above those trees and over the hill was "Little Echo Lake," but we were heading for "James Peak Lake" first.
Looking southeast, Derek standing on the trail to James Peak Lake. Somebody worked hard to put this trial in.
I told Derek to keep his eyes open for artifacts laying on the trail, and suddenly in the middle of the trail, was this abandoned sled or toboggan. It looked to be 70 to 100 years old. It probably weighed 300 pounds. I wonder what stories it had and why was it left here?
Looking south from the base of James Peak.
Looking southeast.
More pools of water.
A cabin on the edge of James Peak Lake. I hope to find out the story for this place.
James Peak Lake looking west.
Another view of James Peak Lake looking northwest.
Top of the cabin looking east.
Looking west, James Peak towering above, the corner of the cabin and a very large pipe dated 1890.
We had to go back about a 1/4 of a mile to get to Little Echo Lake. Here's a foot bridge that we had to cross.
Looking southwest you can just see the corner of James Peak. Look closely at the center of this photo, some unlucky person's vehicle rolled down the mountain and ended up here.
Heading on up to Little Echo Lake, you can see the northern spur of James Peak.
James Peak again.
My first view of Little Echo Lake looking north.
The edge of Little Echo Lake looking east. This is where I thought Charles Weitfle took his "Lake Luena" photo, I was so sure that it was here. I was told that a small rock formation here collapsed not too many years ago, but this angle just doesn't look right. After looking at all my photos, and walking around the lake, I still believe this is the same lake. I think that the rock formation was at the edge of the rock slide going into the lake, and that the Weitfle rock was still partially buried in the snow in the view below. If true, Weitfle would have been taking a photo staring back at the Collier view. Also, Weitfle has canoes in his photo, that would be the only way to get to that side of the lake.
Looking southwest at Little Echo Lake.
Another southwest view.
ditto...
I'm on the north shore now, here's the rock slide looking southwest.
ditto..
Looking straight south from the north shore.
Looking southeast, if you look carefully you can see 4x4s parked at the edge of our trail out.
A southwest zoomed view.
I had to stand where Joseph Collier stood for this photograph. He must of had a wide angle lens on his camera, because you can see the tops of the mountains in his view, this was the best I could do.
Looking east from where Collier stood.
Looking southeast.
Another eastern view.
This is where Collier stood.
Derek showing me his fish he caught while I was taking photos. Of course I caught a bigger one later.
Derek's fish. Don't worry, we're catch and release people, so no harm was done to this little guy. Unless someone else caught him, he's still swimming in the lake today.
Looking southeast through the trees as we were heading back to the car.

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