We started out with a quick visit to Cataract Falls, near the parking area and Trailhead for the Steamboat Mountain Lookout trail. Twenty plus years ago, I had visited the Cataract Falls in winter to do a little ice climbing of the frozen falls, but first time seeing in the liquid state. I have 9 videos to watch, to share the hike.
Then we got on Trail number 205 at the trail head to Steamboat Mountain Lookout, a twelve mile round trip, 3400 feet elevation gain through a regenerating forest. In 1988 240,000 acres burned, as evidenced still in the charred trees seen in the videos.
Staying on Trail 205, there is another trail to the right, Trail 215. We continue to gain in elevation and see plenty of fresh bear scat and tracks.
Time for a rest at the junction of Trail 205 and Trail 239. After water, jerky and trail mix, power up towards the cliffs, veer to the left on Trail 239.
Lichen covered rocks along the trail, the looming cliffs of Steamboat Mountain, and the plains are on display. Also the standing remaining dead trees from the 1988 fire are quite prevalent.
Can finally see the top of the Steamboat Mountain Lookout, elevation 8,585 feet. A solar powered repeater is barely visible on the top, but we make our way up to the saddle before the ascent in the scree.
On the saddle, we look east and out over the plains toward Great Falls. A bit of a rest before the final climb in the scree, with a trail all the way to the top.
On top, the view is spectacular and the merging of the plains and the upthrusted Rockies is very apparent. It was our first time for this hike and well worth the effort.
Once we got back to the parking area, we saw the critter that was making all the tracks and scat.
Thank you all for watching and reading, another in a series of the Work and Life balance theme.