Friday, August 8th, 2014
Mountain Biking past Columbine Lake
The Elusive beautiful Columbine Lake. Many hikers seek it, few make it there. It’s not easy but it is worth the effort.
These Google Earth images show popular trail and Mountain routes to Columbine from the OPUS Hut.
The first image shows the treeline traverse around the east end of the Lookout Peak ridge.
The second shows the difficult but fast route through Ruby Lake , northeast of the hut.
The third image shows the difficult, fastest route over the top of Peak 13,330 directly north of the hut.
Saturday, July 26th, 2014
The flowers are still bloomin’ peakin’ !
Clear Lake Columbine
Tuesday, May 13th, 2014
Two feet of fresh over the weekend – “toothy smiles” they say.
Sunday, April 6th, 2014
Tuesday, March 25th, 2014
It’s a magical time in the northern San Juans. Spring !
The snow is settling down, the sun is sweet, and the pow just keeps comin’ .
Don’t forget the sunscreen.
Wednesday, February 5th, 2014
Sunshine and Gladstone at dawn
Definitely February transition time out there. Storm Total is 40 ” so far with more forecast. A real “crusher”, we hope. Crushing, and compacting all those large unstable crystals down at the bottom of the snow pack.
Sunday, February 2nd, 2014
Nice to have some fresh after a relatively dry January.
Be Careful out there she’s gonna take some time to settle !
Monday, December 30th, 2013
May the new year bring many magical, safe, backcountry days !
Crystal in Paradise
Thanks for all the great times in 2013
Chief Mel Whippin’ up some goodness
Sunrise on South Lookout Peak
Sunday, December 15th, 2013
A little beta while we wait for the next dump. Wise up y’all !
We see group after group lug pounds and pounds of food and booze to the hut each year. Dragging 80 lb. sleds up the 3.5 mile road route to the hut. Then dragging half that back down in trash and extra crap. We provide food and all the blankets you need at the hut so you don’t have to do that.
Tip : Buy your meals at the hut and take a more exciting route to the hut.
Mels Perfect Pizza
Come in from the Telluride ski area, Red Mountain Pass, Ice lakes basin ……. Get a map ! make your own route !
Ronjas Couloir – Drops into Ruby lake from Columbine Lake
Paradise Basin in the foreground – Clear Lake behind.
Showing route into Clear lk. fr. Swamp Canyon.
Saturday, December 7th, 2013
Support the San Juan Mountains Act. Some might imagine that huts and wilderness don’t go together. Obviously, huts can’t be built in wilderness areas, but huts do help to protect the environment. By increasing the awareness and appreciation of the surrounding wild lands, those who might not spend time in the mountains can become comfortable with the wild and learn to defend it. This is the mission of the OPUS. You may have assumed it was all about partying and skiing.
Clear Lake ridge; Ice Lakes Basin
Clear Lake Basin
Goldenhorn shoulder – Ice Lakes Basin
Clear Lake Basin – Entry Ramp
Going through old photos yesterday I came across a few good ones of the front yard, which will all be protected under the proposed wilderness study area. In fact everything on the south side of Ophir Pass road would be protected.