Roggen to Fort Morgan, CR-127 to CR-104, then CR-110 thru Pawnee National Grassland to Pawnee Buttes trailhead.

Any of this sound familiar?  Nope.  Drove to the ends of the earth today — 13 miles south of Nebraska, 16 miles to Wyoming.  Not only my first Colorado ‘Plains’ hike but my first time on a dirt road for 14 solid miles.  Internet research recommended we travel with a full tank of gas – COOOOORRECT!  Only visible signs of life I saw were drill wells & 3 Pronghorn antelope.

My friend Stephen travelled in from New Hampshire for a quick weekend visit – but what to do with only 2 days?  Luckily, John had sent out an email on Tuesday inviting those available to join him & son Nate on a hike to Pawnee Buttes.  PERFECT!

And Ro?  Couldn’t have been happier – off leash & free to explore with Annmarie’s Jack Russell, Karma.

Temps in the 50’s & sunshine – beautiful day hike.  Internet research warned this hike was prone to rattlesnakes & a scorcher in the summer (no trees).  Mighty happy to bang out [this hike] while temps were comfortable & small pockets of snow still show.

Deviated off trail, opting to follow canyon ravines carved around both prominent buttes.  Rock climbing was not an option today – these formations consisted of only sandstone & clay.  Kinda like giant mud patties left baking in the sun for centuries.

Traversing around the opposite end of West Pawnee Butte, caught some amazing views while trekking above the gorge wall.  Posted multiple ‘WOW’ shots — both John & Nate mugged from some sheer crazy drop-offs.

I attempted to scale West Pawnee Butte – made it up maybe 15 feet max.  Had to stay loose & light – and NOT grip too tightly or the clay climbing wall would literally crush in my hands.  Going up, no worries.  However, climbed down blind.  Hard to get a foothold without breaking clay.  Whatta AWESOME life experience!  Check, done 🙂

Drove State Highway 14 to Fort Collins on the return (rural but paved), stopping to eat burgers at Coopersmiths in Old Town before verving off on our respective trips home.  FUN end to a crazy FUN day!

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One Response to hike #55: Pawnee Buttes (CO Plains/WY/NE borders)

  • Joyce Nichols says:

    Looks like you had a great time hiking. Loved the pictures of Ro, especially the one with AnnMarie’s dog. It showed how big Ro really is. Can’t wait to see him.

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