Name: Spruce Creek to Mohawk Lake Trail
Location: Arapaho National Forest – Breckenridge, CO
Length: 6.2 miles
Elevation Gain: 1,791 feet
My friend Todd had been begging me to take him hiking since his wife Jill recently became pregnant. His adventure partner was down for nine months, and he was going a little stir crazy. So finally we found a day that worked for him and his buddy, Curtis, and we headed towards Breckenridge to get as far into the mountains as we could in the dead of winter so Todd could get his Rockies fix. We decided to snowshoe Spruce Creek Trail, which seemed passable based on some Instagram geotag searching. And, of course, Marlowe was thrilled to have her boyfriend Sammy along for the adventure!
We had some gorgeous sunshine and bluebird skies which made it nice and warm that day, but with the amount of snow on the ground, Todd pulled out his GPS to direct us towards what we assumed was the trail.
We forged our own trail, weaving in and out of trees and climbing hills I’m sure were not part of the original plan. Nothing looked familiar under the blankets of snow. Finally, we arrived at an old familiar area – the old miners’ cabin ruins. We debated continuing on to the lakes and decided to try and go for it.
As we climbed and climbed in our snowshoes, taking ten steps, then resting, and then another ten, I yelled at Todd, “Hey people don’t normally snowshoe this do they?” Todd looked at me and shook his head. haha! We were crazy! All I could think was that what goes up, must come down, and I really wasn’t looking forward to snowshoeing this downhill.
In the end though, we made me down safely, mostly by sliding on our butts, and this hike alone made me wish I knew how to ski. It would have made the return so much easier!
This is something I would have never done on my own. Snowshoeing and winter conditions are far too new to me. But I think after this hike, I definitely want to learn more and possibly take up skiing so I can do more backcountry adventuring year round.
After the hike, Curtis had to leave to get to work. But Todd and I made a stop in Breckenridge to refuel at Empire Burger. Highly recommend after a long, strenuous hike.