Pilgrimage to Mt. Holy Cross

In 2010, a year after walking across Wyoming on the Continental Divide Trail (CDT) – that’s detailed on the MAN MADE post – Dylan and I decided to try something different. Instead of a destination oriented hike, or a treck on a trail, we decided to walk out of my front door in Denver and bushwhack west for two weeks – figuring at 15-20 miles a day we’d make it about 250 miles and end up somewhere near Leadville Colorado. We’d be on a walkabout or colossal scale dérive.

Just for reference it takes a full day – a long 28 mile day – to get out of town. We poached a camping spot about a mile from the parking lot in Mt. Falcon open space park outside of suburban Morison Colorado. We fell asleep to the thudding beats of some mystery band lightning up the iconic Red Rocks Amphitheater a couple miles to the south.

On the afternoon of the third day we summited Mt. Evans – the 14,265 ft. peak dominating the Front Range immediately west of Denver. All geared up in our lightweight pack gear we we’re oddly out of place on this high summit amongst the crowds of tourists who drove up, and the hardcore cyclists the rode up, the highest paved road in North America. Looking out at the far western horizon a pyramidal point stood out above the furthest ridge line, A faint glacial cross reflecting the late afternoon sun. I can’t remember if it was verbalized or telepathically settled; but, Mt. Holy Cross became the distinction of this pilgrimage.

Unlike the MAN MADE project the previous year hiking the CDT across Wyoming I’d decided that the wandering implicit in this sojourn was creative enough and precluded the need to make any proper art out of it. I did, however, take some photos which edit down to a nice sequence of what it’s like to provision your self for two weeks, lock your front door behind you, and truly get lost…

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