Carey and Debbie above Yellowstone's Grand Prismatic Spring

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Rollins & Rogers Rail Romp

Taking the high road up and over the divide several times on a perfect fall day.

September 27, 2014

Rollinsville, CO

The following was originally posted (see page 15) as part of a mega stoke thread on mtbr called "Do you like to get HIGH, man? (post your high country riding photos)"


On a beautiful Fall Saturday like this, figured I'd take the long way... going up and over on the former railroad grade instead of punching straight through the mountains on the newfangled "cheater line":

Nature's version of a tunnel enveloped me in a radiant glow:

Yankee Doodle Lake, reflecting:

The famous Needle Eye tunnel eased into view through a slot:

Jenny Lake sparkled below:

Not exactly collapsed, merely too unstable to keep open for passage. Motorized connection over the divide is therefore no longer possible around here:

Luckily, a short, steep scramble allows bikes and hikers to bypass the closed tunnel and continue onwards:

Several handy trestles remain open for riding too:

The world turns downright purty up here:

Rollins Pass at 11,660 ft (also known as Corona back in the day--just read the sign):

Continued on the former railroad grade 3 or 4 miles down toward Winter Park:

Then it was up on the Rogers Pass trail, about 2.5 miles of relatively MTB-worthy singletrack:

This little bugger was downright steep and rocky at times, but thoroughly scenic:

Rogers Pass at 11,860 ft:

Gorgeous high alpine scenery all around:

The hidden jewel of Heart Lake appeared far below, down in the Wilderness area:

Retraced back down the trail and chugged back up the Moffat Road towards Rollins Pass, passing Corona Lake en route:

Plenty of lumber left from the doomed railroad snowsheds:

Just a little more frolicking on the trestles:

Choo choo! Now, let's get on with the jangly 15 mile descent:

Back down in the valley, cattle basked in the late-afternoon fall colors:

While comparatively light on singletrack, this 43 mile linkup of Rollins and Rogers made for a surprisingly satisfying day of high country exploration. Carry on, y'all!


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