It seems a little early, but it's mountain time already! We had such a dry winter that the hill sides are mostly free of drifts, but rain over the last week or two has giving some needed moisture to growing plants and the underbrush is springing to life!
We took a short hike in the Pike Forest, three hours of Ponderosa forest, scrub oak, wildflowers and a light breeze. If there is a better place for a lunch break I can't find it! This area is very prone to fires, and many small communities and homesites dot the valleys. There is a lot of fire mitigation going on in these woods, selective thinning of trees and firewood harvesting. Just last week a prescribed burn shot back to life on a dry windy day and ravaged many acres nearby here. After so many years of dry fire suppression and dry summers the Pike continues to be a dangerous fire zone.
The return to the mountains on foot (instead of skis) marks the start of another backpack season! Hopefully I'll explore many new corners of the Colorado Rockies. Are you getting back into the wilds?