Lately, whenever I think of the Spring Brook Loop Trail, I think of Alison Krauss and her song, “New Favorite.” But Alison sings of jealousy, a trait that trails don’t have.
The Spring Brook Loop is my new favorite trail. It has everything I want: The trailhead is only five miles from my apartment, yet it’s totally away from civilization in the foothills of the Rockies. The trail is just steep enough to give me a good workout; it’s not rocky so I can make good time on it; and the uphill part comes first so I can coast down on the return trip. It is indeed a loop, the sort of trail that I love, because a loop gives you more views for your effort. It also has beautiful surroundings that aren’t totally closed in by forest.
This trail, however, was awfully muddy when I was here before on New Year’s Eve. But, hey, nobody’s perfect. And since we haven’t had any snow or rain for a week or so, the trail was perfect today.
So was the weather. Warm (57 degrees in Boulder), calm, and sunny, the weather couldn’t have been more different from yesterday’s. I didn’t wear any jacket, gloves, or headsock, much less hand and foot warmers. “Spectacular weather today!” exclaimed one cyclist I met on the trail.
Another cyclist, John Green, stopped to talk cameras. Carrying one seems to be almost as good a way of striking up a conversation as going out with a dog or a child.
John was carrying the latest addition to his arsenal of 13 cameras, a Canon PowerShot. While it doesn’t shoot in RAW, it is a beautiful little camera with a large and bright LCD display. John took several photos of me, including this one:
Because the air was still today, I was able shoot plants along the trail. I experimented with using higher ISO values, because I haven’t noticed any digital noise with my great new Canon 50D until I set the ISO value awfully high. While I took the first of the plants below at ISO 100, I was able to stop down the second to f/22 for greater depth of field on the plant by shooting at ISO 800 with no apparent noise:
The plant above is growing along the spillway, which is now full of water. The last couple of times I was here, the spillway was completely dry. And the last time I was here the bridge over the spillway connecting the Spring Brook Loop Trail to the Goshawk Ridge Trail wasn’t in place yet. Now we have a bridge:
Since I was out for most of this spectacular day, I ate my lunch (mackerel and coffee) beside the trail. While I didn’t find any rocks or logs to sit on, the ground welcomed me and the vista was grand: