Robeson (13140') and Engelmann (13362', #349).

10 Sep 2000 - by Paul Wilson (view roster page)

My selected route was via Ruby Creek from the N near the URAD mine. John, Andy and Jim and I did the hike. The route is interesting as the URAD mine had now been converted to a reclamation project and the roads and all marked private except it is allowed to drive to the upper URAD lake which is apparantly on public lands. So we obeyed the signs and parked on the side of the sign which said not to tresspass for the next 3.3 miles. The walk to the Ruby creek trail head is 1 mile. This steep road is gated but is in good shape. We walked up the road then thru easy trees then went up a short loose slope (harder class 2) to the NW leading slope to the summit of Robeson. The slope was easy class 2 grass. The biggest problem was moderately high wings with the associated wind chill.

From Robeson we descended to N to the saddle and up to Engelmann. Another class 2 walk. I noted an interesting feature. About 200 feet from the summit there was a spring and the water flow under the crust of ice was fairly fast. This must be one of the highest springs I have seen in Colorado. The water went down the slope about a hundred feet then disapeared into the ground. The descent was direct from the summit heading W. This route was class 2 but was on big solid talus for part of the distance. A change from the grass we had been walking on up until then. But, the talus was short lived and we walked on grass to the forest where we found easy walking thry the trees back to the road and the car. Upon returning to the main road we noted many autos parked, obviously the other hikers didnt care about the signs.

The reclamation project looks impressive whth many catch basins for the mine tailings and bypass of the natural water flow thru pipes to aviod contamination by the mine runoff. The mine runnoff is processed in a new water treatment plant on the W side of the valley. This treated water then goes from lake to lake before it is finnaly released into tClear creek lower in the valley near the Berthoud pass highway.

An easy hike close with a short drive for front range hikers, and allows one to get some great views if the continental divide.


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