Summer is here, meaning the arrival of wild flowers season. I'm a sucker for wild flowers. I find them more authentic and lively than those ones cultivated and nurtured in gardens.Wild flowers are the ultimate romantic lovers with free will and ardent passion to prevail over whatever physical environment they are in.
When we first moved to Colorado, a local friend mentioned their amazing experience of hiking among wild flowers in Crested Butte Colorado. When wild flowers and hiking are included in one sentence, my heart was immediately captured. So we made a plan of hiking in the wild flowers together in Crested Butte that summer.
We arrived in Crested Butte at the end of July and planned to do one classic hike per day for three days. Lucky for us, all three hikes turned out to be overwhelmingly beautiful. I have been looking forward to returning to those trails as soon as I left there.
The first hike was Scarp Ridge Middle Loop, which is a moderate to strenuous 7.5km trail with 1,576 feet elevation gain and mountain vistas in every direction.
The second hike was West Maroon Pass which is part of the Crested Butte to Aspen "highway". It's a 12.5km moderate hike with a strenuous finish and 2,312 feet elevation gain.
The third hike was Rustler Gulch which is a moderate 11km hike with 1,850 feet elevation gain. Among the three hikes, this probably was our favourite as we not only witnessed the most stunning display of wild flowers but came across a couple of young moose taking a stroll with us.
All three trails were covered by abundant and thriving wild flowers in various types, shapes and colours: vibrant Indian paint brushes, curious elephant trunks, tall bluebells, velvet fringed gentians, bright goldeneyes, violet columbines and many others I couldn't name. Sometimes the flowers were so tall that I walked among them, other times they elegantly gathered around a stream or a pond forming a natural bouquet.
The day we hiked Rustler Gulch was my birthday and it is the most memorable birthday of my life thanks to those gorgeous wild flowers, the spirited moose and the breathtaking views!