Tuesday, June 11, 2019

June 1 - Slaughterhouse Gulch

On June 1, 2019, Patrol 14 headed out to run Slaughterhouse Gulch. This trail had been suggested at our planning meeting, and most of us had not been on the trail in a number of years. Joining us on the run were Sam and Elaine, Harold (running solo), Tom Hester (also running solo), Daryl and RoxeAn, new member Jaime (unfortunately for us, Cecilia couldn't join us on this run), prospective member CJ (Carolyn), guest Joe Maleski and our patrol leader Bill and Cheryl.

We met at Allen's Park, so everyone could load up on coffee and pickup any additional lunch needs. We were on the road headed to the trailhead by about 10am. Bill took the lead and Daryl pulled up the rear.

Once we were at the trailhead and aired down, we headed up 101 towards Slaughterhouse Gulch. The trail was in really fantastic condition. Thank you Patrols 10 and 12 for doing a great job in getting this trail in tip-top shape. Forest Service road 101 isn't really challenging.

After rolling along 101, we rolled onto 105. The scenery improved, and we soon came across our fist small obstacle.

It was nothing extreme, but it was something just to peak everyone's interest a little. We continued on and soon came to the large parking area where we met Patrol 4. 

They had a really small group that day (for them anyway). We decided to break for lunch here since there's plenty of room, and it would give Patrol 4 a chance to get ahead of us. This way they could take their time on the upcoming obstacles. Brian Hamilton (Patrol 22) also happened to be on the trail, running with Patrol 4. Since, he was a member of Patrol 14 years ago (and knows most of us anyway), he decided to hang back with us and chat while we had lunch. After some relaxing and some orange slices (Cheryl just has to bring her orange slices on all runs lately), we started up the trail towards the obstacles. This is where the trail begins to get a bit more technical and fun; but with the right spotter, almost any Jeep can make the climb. No one in our group had any real issues, which certainly made things easy.

Most of the remaining trail has some fun sections that are not difficult and would present a lot of fun for small to stock Jeeps. It also had some beautiful scenery, which would probably be amazing to see in September.

As we neared the exit it began to rain lightly, and occasionally we would see a slushy substance like snow/hail (was that snow or hail in early June??!!). When we got to the exit it was still raining some big drops, and there was chatter on the radio about airing up in the rain. Not moments after shutting off the Jeep and stepping out to evaluate the amount of rain falling, it stopped. Everyone (except Sam & Elaine) elected to air up here. As mentioned, this isn't really a tough trail, but it can make for an enjoyable day and is really close to Denver. I would definitely recommend getting out on this trail when you are looking for a relaxing day in 4-Low.