Sand Creek Run

by Adam Mehlberg

August 28th the Trailridge Runners 4WD club met to run Sand Creek near Red Feathers Lake. We had six members show up at the Conoco station at Hwy 287 and 66. Mike Moore, Tim Sprouse, Hal and Jan Riggs, Patrick Davis, Bill and Roberta Boitano, and myself headed for Ted's Place north of Fort Collins. At our refuel at Ted's we picked up Doug and Becka Douthit.

We chose to go up to the Red Feathers Lake road and run Deadman Road to its intersection with FDR 336. We followed 336 passing hunting camps along the way. It was the opening of archery season. This part of the Sand Creek road was a two track, so we made it to Road 80C by lunch. We chose a nice spot overlooking the valley below Bull Mountain.

Lunch being done, we backtracked to a turn off from FDR336 that looked promising. The road was narrower and had more challenge, but ended up connecting into the road network of an active timber sale. We explored these roads a little bit, but they seemed to switch back and forth across the face of the hill side above the Laramie River valley. We decided to head to Nunn Creek Basin to see what it would offer.

Back at the Deadman Road we dropped south onto FDR319 and worked our way over to FDR517. With all the rain, the mud holes on Nunn Creek Basin, FDR517, were full. We navigated the minor ones, and then reached the deepest one on Nunn Creek Basin. A few opted for the shallower section while Tim, Brian, and Mike went straight through. After this last mud hole the terrain got rockier and we climbed up to tie in with FDR 300. Half of our group headed back to town on 300 while the rest of us went on to Middle Bald Mountain, the rest of FDR517.

I knew that Middle Bald would be rocky, and it was. Because it was getting late in the day we kept moving along and didn't spend much time on the obstacles. After an hour plus we were navigating some timber sale roads and working our way out to Road 162, which connects Rustic with Red Feathers Lake.

On an exploration trip like Sand Creek, you never know what you will find. We had some easy scenic parts, some mud, and some rock. It was a good run.


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