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Hike of the Week: Walking Mountains introduces Backyard Backcountry hiking series

By Nathan Boyer-Rechlin
Special to the Daily
Hikes at Shrine Ridge offer great chances to explore different types of local wildflowers.
Casey Russell | crussell@vaildaily.com

Beginning next week, Walking Mountains hiking programs are kicking off a brand new community hikes series. If you’ve ever stopped and wondered what that interesting flower is you see every day on your morning run, been interested in mushrooming, or wanted to learn more about what makes Colorado’s alpine zone unique to our state, this series is all about learning what makes your backyard trail so special.

Our ‘Backyard Backcountry’ hikes take place on local, easy to access trails and are free if you choose to meet us at the trailhead. Alternatively, we offer transportation from a number of convenient pick-up locations in the valley for just $10. These half-day hikes take place every Monday morning and rotate locations and topics around the valley. We hope you’ll join us for a fun and social half-day hike, and enjoy learning a little more about your backyard.

Quick Facts

When? Every Monday through October 12, 9 a.m. to 1-2 p.m. (estimated return time)

Where? Rotating trails in Edwards, Minturn, and Vail

Cost? Free to meet at trailhead! $10 for transportation from designated pick-up locations.

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Registration? Pre-registration is required. Register at http://www.walkingmountains.org/hike

More information? Visit walkingmountains.org/hike to view the whole schedule or email hike@walkingmountains.org for more information.

Series offerings

What’s Bloomin’ in the Backyard?  Join a naturalist guide on your local backyard trail to learn which wildflowers are currently blooming, and to how to identify flowers on your next hike.
Life on the Frontlines: Climate Change in the Alpine?  Learn about how Colorado’s Alpine zone is the frontlines in the climate crisis here in the Rocky Mountains, and what research is telling us about how this environment and the critters that live here may adapt.
Alpine Wildflowers?  A whole unique community of spectacular, hardy (and often very tiny) wildflowers thrive in Colorado’s harshest environment. Learn what makes these plants so beautiful, unique, and awesome.
Mysterious Mycology:  What’s an organism that is neither a plant nor an animal, thrives year after year but isn’t always seen, that’s sometimes tasty and sometimes deadly, and are some of the largest organisms on earth? Mushrooms. Join a naturalist in learning all about these fun fungi. *this is not a foraging program.

Summer Backyard Backcountry Schedule

DateTrailLocationProgram
June 22Homestead TrailsEdwardsWhat’s Bloomin’?
June 29Shrine RidgeVailLife on the Frontlines
July 6Stag GulchEdwardsWhat’s Bloomin’?
July 13Shrine RidgeVailAlpine Wildflowers
July 20Grouse CreekMinturnWhat’s Bloomin?
July 27Shrine RidgeVailAlpine Wildflowers
August 3TBDTBDMysterious Mycology
August 10North Trail or Shrine RidgeVailWhat’s Bloomin’?
August 17Shrine RidgeVailAlpine Wildflowers
August 24TBDTBDMysterious Mycology
August 31Shrine RidgeVailLife on the Frontlines

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