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Fitness and Photography for Fun - A blog on staying fit by hiking and doing photography by David Mendosa

Hogback Ridge Trail Loop

January 1st, 2009 · 2 Comments

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The start of the new year wasn’t that different for me than the end of the old. Both were on the trail, and near the end of each hike I came across herds of swift deer and views of stunning sunsets.

Today’s hike took me eight miles north of my apartment in south Boulder to a three-mile loop trail up and over Hogback Ridge. From its name I expected the trail would be rocky rather than muddy, and it was. They don’t call it Hogback Ridge because of raising pigs there. A hogback ridge is studded with rock outcroppings, like this:

Hogback Ridge

Hogback Ridge

Today’s hike was on a trail that I never took before. I have three guidebooks to hikes around Boulder and have already hiked all of the trails that those books describe. Today I was looking for a loop trail in the foothills that wouldn’t be muddy, like yesterday’s hike was. I found it not in any book, but on one of my trail maps.

As I came down from the ridge I spotted a herd of eight deer in some trees along the left side of the trail. But by the time I got there they had crossed the trail and climbed up a hill. I followed for a few hundred yards off the trail and was able to look up and photograph them on the horizon.

Don’t these deer have big ears? I never liked their name, “mule deer,” but it fits their profile:

Mule Deer on the Horizon

Mule Deer on the Horizon

I knew that I had time to follow the deer because I was waiting for the sunset. Since the evening was cloudy, I expected the sunset to be special. But I was early. In fact, even when I got back on the trail after my foray after the deer, I sat down on a rock near the trail for a cold half hour until the sunset appeared.

Finally, the dying of the sunlight lit up the sky. From the trail looking south, this was Boulder and its sky this evening:

Sunset over Boulder

Sunset over Boulder


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Posted in: Hiking

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Scott K. Johnson // Jan 3, 2009 at 11:42 am

    What an amazing photo of the tree at Hogback Ridge! It is stunning!

  • 2 David Mendosa // Jan 3, 2009 at 12:11 pm

    Dear Scott,

    Thank you! I really like that shot too.

    Best regards,


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