- Hike #6 of 2019
- Date 2/9/19
- Route: Lodgepole Loop/Sunny Aspen/Old Ski Run Trail
- Trailhead: Meyer Ranch
- Distance: 4.6 miles
- Elevation Gain: 902′
- Class 1
- Total Elapsed Time: 2 h 7 m
- Partners: Kyle
Meyer Ranch Park, a Jefferson County Open Space, was originally homesteaded by the McIntyre family sometime before 1870. Since then, the ranch has had a few owners, most recently the Meyer family who still live across the road. The property was used for hay, timber, and cattle, but legend has it that the Barnum Circus used the area as wintering grounds for their animals. In the early 1940’s, a portion of the ranch was used as a ski hill. Now the area is used by the public for a multitude of outdoor activities.
We enjoyed the beautiful weather and the opportunity to explore a new park. Jefferson County Open Spaces are some of the most well kept parks I’ve been to. Meyer Ranch Park had great signage and a number of benches and picnic areas to accomodate people of all levels.
I spent much of the hike playing with my new camera and lenses (Christmas presents from Kyle and his parents) and practiced photographing trees and plants. I have been trying to be more mindful and present while hiking, enjoying everything around me. This includes stopping to look at things that one would normally pass up. Bark, pine cones, rocks, and even a tiny green plant, a surprising winter find.
Another hiker gave us a tip to climb Legault Mountain. While the mountain itself was on the park’s map, there didn’t appear to be a trail to the top. However, this is not the case as we saw a well packed (though unmarked) side trail diverge from the main trail, heading directly for this mountain. I did some quick research when we got home and found out that it’s only a 7 mile hike to the top, so I added Legault to my list for another time.