Backpacking 101: Experts share favorite trails and tips for multi-day hiking | PostIndependent.com

Backpacking 101: Experts share favorite trails and tips for multi-day hiking

Backpacking season has arrived.

Thanks to warm mornings, cool afternoons (if there's rain) and crisp, clear nights, July and August are prime months to hit the trail for two or three days at a time. Maybe it's been a while since you broke in your hiking boots, or maybe you just put a long backpacking expedition on your summer must-do list. To prepare and shake off the dust, we asked local hiking experts to share their favorite backpacking trails and give a few professional tips they've had to learn the hard way — so we don't have to.

Into the field

Longtime Summit County hiker Mary Ellen Gilliland, author of both "The Vail Hiker" and the "The Summit Hiker," has blazed the trail for backpackers in the area for decades, literally. Fun fact: It was Gilliland who found and named the popular Shrine Mountain Trail in 1987.

For beginners, Gilliland recommends the Cross Creek Trail in Eagle County, which starts 5 miles past Minturn off of U.S. Highway 24 along Tigiwon Road #707. At 14 miles, the hike takes two to three days depending on your pace. Cross Creek doesn't have much altitude gain, which makes it easier to carry your pack, and the shade of the forest keeps you cool. Gilliland said the trail has unusual terrain for the area, with a "canyon atmosphere" filled with "gem-like" lakes and giant rocks covered with moss, ending at Missouri Lakes.

For more of a challenge, Gilliland also recommends Red Buffalo Pass, which begins at the Buffalo Cabin Trailhead outside of Wildernest or can be accessed at the Gore Creek Trailhead in East Vail. On the roughly 11- to 12-mile hike, you'll see wildflowers galore and come across a bevy of babbling streams. Gilliland said on the trail you can also decide to camp and hike the additional 3 miles to the remote Gore Lake. Some folks turn the trip into a three- or four-day round-trip journey, but for a weekend excursion be sure to leave a second car at the Vail trailhead for a quick trip back to Summit.

PACKING THE ESSENTIALS

Will Elliott, head guide at Paragon Guides in Edwards, joked that his most essential backpacking item is "my llama, because then I can bring everything."

Elliott said the biggest mistake people make is carrying a pack that is too heavy. One way to lighten your load is by buying a new backpack if yours is outdated, which can shave off up to 5 pounds. Elliott said in the summertime one could skip the tent and just sleep under the stars, either on the ground or in a hammock.

"Luckily in Colorado, we don't have a lot of predators," Elliott said. "Sleeping out under the tarp can be wonderful. A tent is a lot of weight. Shaving weight by sleeping under a tarp can be a good way to lessen the load in (your) pack."

EXTRAS WORTH THE WEIGHT

Gilliland suggests bringing sturdy black garbage bags, which have multiple uses: You can cut a hole in it to make a rain poncho, use it as a tarp if the ground is wet and if you set up camp, then you can fill it with water, hang it up and let it sit in the sun. At the end of the day, you'll have a hot wash to scrub away all of the sweat and mud.

Dan Brewster, owner of Haute Route Gear and Apparel in Avon, said one thing people often neglect are trekking poles, which are much more common in Europe.

"I would say (poles) are an overlooked equipment accessory," Brewster said. "(They) do take some of the load off your knees and ankles."

AVOIDING ACHES

Gilliland said a "backpacker's biggest woe is blisters," but there are ways to prevent your feet from killing you after only a few hours on the trail.

She suggests slathering your feet with Vaseline before you slip on your socks and shoes, and wear two sock layers, one thin and one thicker. Also put Vaseline on your skin right above your hip, or make sure to tuck your T-shirt into your pants. Doing this keeps your backpack and its straps from rubbing up against your skin the entire time, which is one of "the things that drive people crazy," Gilliland said.

Elliott said even though Colorado is dry, there are so many streams that run during the summer you really don't need to worry too much about your water supply, but make sure to bring some sort of purification system.

"Unless you're doing a high ridge hike or one of the 14ers, those are the places you have to worry about water a little bit more," Elliott said. "For the most part in the High Country, there's quite a bit of water for the whole hiking season."

SAFETY IN NUMBERS

In addition to the right gear, Brewster said one thing people don't think about before embarking on a challenging backpacking trip is carrying the right mindset.

"The attitude you bring is almost as important as the equipment," Brewster said. "If you're not with the right person, it can sometimes be pretty tough if they're not into it like you are. You want to make sure that everybody in the party knows what to expect in terms of their physical abilities."

It's not uncommon to hear stories of hikers who go missing in Colorado, reminding us that there are dangers to backpacking. Elliott said these incidents are more likely to happen with solo backpackers, so be wary of hiking alone and tell someone your route before you head out. Gilliland said especially during the early hiking season, if you come across a stream or creek with heavy runoff and need to go across, then take off your pack.

"If you were to slip on an algae-covered rock and the water's running high, that pack could submerge you into the water," Gilliland said.

NOT A BAD CAMERA ANGLE FOR MILES

Keystone, Breckenridge and Copper Mountain may be synonymous with great skiing, but those who only see this county as a map of ski runs are missing out on experiencing the mountains by traversing trails that wind, curve and take you to sights no gondola ride can match. Local hiking experts agree that with hundreds of acres of wilderness surrounding us, we really do live in a backpacker's paradise.

"(We have all) these splendid mountain ranges that are almost a stone's throw from us," Gilliland said. "Their proximity to one another is so great. No matter what trail you're on, you're going to have beautiful mountain views."

For maps, directions and guides to backpacking hikes in and around the area, visit FS.USDA.gov or see the Bootprints Hiking Guide at ExploreSummit.com.

Shooter Jennings Band performs free Vail show July 25

VAIL — Shooter Jennings performs music that leaves a grin on the faces of country and rock fans alike. And with his latest release, even electronic music fans likely have a new appreciation for him.

Jennings brings his brand of rocking outlaw country music to the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater on July 25 for a free Hot Summer Nights concert.

Son of musicians

Even if you aren't familiar with his work, it's likely you know his parents, country music legends Waylon Jennings and Jessi Colter.

Coming of age in his parent's tour bus no doubt colored Shooter's life. Shooter — who was nicknamed such after a little boy at church, though his dad told everyone it was because he peed on the nurse when he was born — showed his musical aptitude at a young age. He began playing the drums at age 5 and taking piano lessons when he was 8. By age 14, he was playing the guitar and from time to time would play percussion in his dad's band.

It's not surprising then that Shooter names his father, along with greats like Hank Williams Jr., Led Zeppelin and the Rolling Stones, as influences.

"I definitely would say that my dad had the biggest influence on me as an artist," Shooter told CMT.com.

Crossing genres

Starting with his debut solo record, 2005's "Put the O Back in Country," Shooter has released eight studio albums, two live records and produced and released a slew of other projects through his record label, Black Country Rock.

The disparity among the albums makes one thing clear: Shooter isn't about to stay put in a genre box. His latest album, "Countach (For Giorgio)" came in at No. 7 on the U.S. Dance/Electronic charts when it dropped in 2016. It pays homage to electronic music pioneer Giorgio Moroder and includes songs with artists ranging from Marilyn Manson to Brandi Carlile (Carlile sings "The Neverending Story" for all you '80s kids out there).

In 2010, Jennings released "Black Ribbons," a psychedelic-country rock concept album that seemed a bit of a departure for him at the time; the election gave it an air of prophecy.

"When I was [making the record], people were like, 'It's a conspiracy theorist album,'" Jennings told Rolling Stone. "But now, it's not that conspiracy theorist. It seems very normal."

No Rules

The song "Wake Up!" warns "they'll try to turn me against you — so, divided, we'll turn to them."

He re-released a special Ultimate Edition of "Black Ribbons" on Election Day, calling the election "the biggest reality show" in that same Rolling Stone piece.

One thing Shooter makes clear time and time again, like his father, he doesn't play by anyone else's rules when it comes to his music.

"While some stay in the safe place of their genres, Jennings continues to place himself where he wants to be, and creates exactly what he feels is needed for the time. Music," reads his latest bio.

Breckenridge Bike Guide: X10U8 trail (video)

SUMMIT COUNTY — French Gulch might as well be a mountain-bike playground.

Running smack through the middle of this MTB wonderland is X10U8, a wonderfully fast and endlessly fun section of singletrack nestled between French Gulch Road and the Minnie Mine trail. At 3/4-mile the trail is almost over before it begins, but, for two or three minutes, it's one hell of a ride, featuring berms, small table tops and narrow pine corridors. This is an intro to technical riding — no burly downhill bike required — with gnarly roots, a few rocky patches and those pump track features.

X10U8 sits low on the hillside, nearly at the same elevation as French Gulch Road, and is often one of the first trails in the area to dry out. The entire stretch is usually ready to rock by mid to late May. It's also one of the final trails to close in the fall, making it a welcome holdout for late-season bike junkies.

As for the name, just sound it out a few times as you're powering through the berms. The namesake is fitting (even if it's not quite the proper context): This trail seems intimidating on first glance, but, by the time you fly through the final corner and skid out onto French Gulch Road, you'll be ready for lap two. It's not nearly as bad as it seems.

Like the majority of trails in French Gulch, X10U8 is bone-dry right now.

Know Before You Go

The French Gulch area is home to several trailheads and parking lots, but none are open to overnight parking or camping. It's also a popular spot for hikers, including dogs, and trails are occasionally closed for mountain-bike or trail-running races. Be sure to bring water.

Description

The one-way trail is nearly a straight shot from the Minnie Mine trailhead to French Gulch Road. (You can ride it both ways, but those pump track features are much more enjoyable from the upper trailhead.) From the Reiling Dredge lot, pedal several hundred yards up Minnie Mine to the X10U8 marker on the left side of the trail. Drop into the trail, and be ready for small table tops on the left-hand side. They're easily avoidable by staying to the right of the trail.

Pedal through 1/4-mile of small jumps and tight turns before coming to the first berm section. The berms vary in size from hairpin to long, slingshot-style corners. Very few are tall (Don't expect a legitimate downhill course), but be wary of loose dirt a month or two into the season.

The berms last for another 1/4-mile before leading to a final series of pine and aspen corridors, punctuated by the occasional table top. The trail ends at a meadow near the base of a mine tail on the shoulder of French Gulch Road. From here, take a leisurely cruise up the dirt road for another lap or split off to one of more than a half-dozen nearby trails.

Parking

X10U8 and the remaining French Gulch trails (Minnie Mine, B&B Trail, Side Door, etc.) are all accesible by French Gulch Road. From Breckenridge, head east on County Road 450, and bear right at the junction with Forest Hills Drive. Continue another 1/2 mile to the stop sign. Take French Gulch Road, and continue through the neighborhood until the road turns to dirt. From there, drive 3 miles to the Reiling Dredge Trailhead. Parking is in a small lot on the left.

Backpacking 101: Experts share favorite trails and tips for multi-day hiking

Backpacking season has arrived.

Thanks to warm mornings, cool afternoons (if there's rain) and crisp, clear nights, July and August are prime months to hit the trail for two or three days at a time. Maybe it's been a while since you broke in your hiking boots, or maybe you just put a long backpacking expedition on your summer must-do list. To prepare and shake off the dust, we asked local hiking experts to share their favorite backpacking trails and give a few pro tips they've had to learn the hard way — so we don't have to.

Into the field

Longtime Summit County hiker Mary Ellen Gilliland, author of both "The Vail Hiker" and the "The Summit Hiker," has blazed the trail for backpackers in the area for decades, literally. Fun fact: It was Gilliland who found and named the popular Shrine Mountain Trail in 1987.

For beginners, Gilliland recommends the Cross Creek Trail in Eagle County, which starts 5 miles past Minturn off U.S. Highway 24 along Tigiwon Road #707. At 14 miles, the hike takes two to three days depending on your pace. Cross Creek doesn't have much altitude gain, which makes it easier to carry your pack, and the shade of the forest keeps you cool. Gilliland said the trail has unusual terrain for the area, with a "canyon atmosphere" filled with "gem-like" lakes and giant rocks covered with moss, ending at Missouri Lakes.

For more of a challenge, Gilliland also recommends Red Buffalo Pass, which begins at the Buffalo Cabin Trailhead outside of Wildernest, or can be accessed at the Gore Creek Trailhead in East Vail. On the roughly 11- to 12-mile hike, you'll see wildflowers galore and come across a bevy of babbling streams. Gilliland said on the trail you can also decide to camp and hike the additional 3 miles to the remote Gore Lake. Some folks turn the trip into a three or four-day round-trip journey, but for a weekend excursion be sure to leave a second car at the Vail trailhead for a quick trip back to Summit.

PACKING THE ESSENTIALS

Will Elliott, head guide at Paragon Guides in Edwards, joked that his most essential backpacking item is "my llama, because then I can bring everything," he said.

Elliott said the biggest mistake people make is carrying a pack that is too heavy. One way to lighten your load is by buying a new backpack if yours is outdated, which can shave off up to five pounds. Elliott said in the summertime one could skip the tent and just sleep under the stars, either on the ground or in a hammock.

"Luckily in Colorado, we don't have a lot of predators," Elliott said. "Sleeping out under the tarp can be wonderful. A tent is a lot of weight. Shaving weight by sleeping under a tarp can be a good way to lessen the load in (your) pack."

EXTRAS WORTH THE WEIGHT

Gilliland suggests bringing sturdy black garbage bags, which have multiple uses: You can cut a hole in it to make a rain poncho, use it as a tarp if the ground is wet, and if you set up camp, then you can fill it with water, hang it up and let it sit in the sun. At the end of the day, you'll have a hot wash to scrub away all the sweat and mud.

Dan Brewster, owner of Haute Route Gear and Apparel in Avon, said one thing people often neglect are trekking poles, which are much more common in Europe.

"I would say (poles) are an overlooked equipment accessory," Brewster said. "(They) do take some of the load off your knees and ankles."

AVOIDING ACHES

Gilliland said a "backpacker's biggest woe is blisters," but there are ways to prevent your feet from killing you after only a few hours on the trail.

She suggests slathering your feet with Vaseline before you slip on your shoes and socks, and wear two sock layers, one thin and one thicker. Also put Vaseline on your skin right above your hip, or make sure to tuck your T-shirt into your pants. Doing this keeps your backpack and its straps from rubbing up against your skin the entire time, which is one of "the things that drive people crazy," Gilliland said.

Elliott said even though Colorado is dry, there are so many streams that run during the summer you really don't need to worry too about much your water supply, but make sure to bring some sort of purification system.

"Unless you're doing a high ridge hike or one of the 14ers, those are the places you have to worry about water a little bit more," Elliott said. "For the most part in the High Country, there's quite a bit of water for the whole hiking season."

SAFETY IN NUMBERS

In addition to the right gear, Brewster said one thing people don't think about before embarking on a challenging backpacking trip is carrying the right mindset.

"The attitude you bring is almost as important as the equipment," Brewster said. "If you're not with the right person, it can sometimes be pretty tough if they're not into it like you are. You want to make sure that everybody in the party knows what to expect in terms of their physical abilities."

It's not uncommon to hear stories of hikers who go missing in Colorado, reminding us that there are dangers to backpacking. Elliott said these incidents are more likely to happen with solo backpackers, so be wary of hiking alone and tell someone your route before you head out. Gilliland said especially during the early hiking season, if you come across a stream or creek with heavy runoff and need to go across, take off your pack.

"If you were to slip on an algae-covered rock and the water's running high, that pack could submerge you into the water," Gilliland said.

NOT A BAD CAMERA ANGLE FOR MILES

Keystone, Breckenridge and Copper Mountain may be synonymous with great skiing, but those who only see this county as a map of ski runs are missing out on experiencing the mountains by traversing trails that wind, curve and take you to sights no gondola ride can match. Local hiking experts agree that with hundreds of acres of wilderness surrounding us, we really do live in a backpacker's paradise.

"(We have all) these splendid mountain ranges that are almost a stone's throw from us," Gilliland said. "Their proximity to one another is so great. No matter what trail you're on, you're going to have beautiful mountain views."

For maps, directions and guides to backpacking hikes in and around the area, visit http://www.fs.usda.gov or see the Bootprints Hiking Guide at ExploreSummit.com.

Movie showtimes for Rifle, El Jebel and Carbondale, Colorado 7/21-7/27

Brenden Rifle

Summer Kids Series: Monsters vs. Aliens, 7/25 11 a.m.

Atomic Blonde premieres 7/27 7

Dunkirk (PG-13)

7/21-7/23: 11:15, 1:50, 4:30, 7:10, 9:45

7/24-7/26: 1, 3:40, 6:15, 9

Valerian (PG-13)

7/21-7/23: 11:50, 3, 6:10, 9:20

7/24-7/26: 1:30, 5:30, 8:45

War for the Planet of the Apes (PG-13)

7/21-7/23: 12:10, 3:20, 6:30, 9:40

7/24-7/26: 1:15, 4:40, 7:40

Spider-Man: Homecoming (PG-13)

7/21-7/23: noon, 3:10, 6, 9

7/24-7/26: 1:40, 4:30, 7:30

Despicable Me 3 (PG)

7/21-7/23: 11:30, 2, 4:15, 6:50, 9:30

7/24-7/26: 1:10, 3:30, 5:45, 8

Wish Upon (PG-13)

7/21-7/23: 11:20, 1:40, 6

7/24-7/26: 1, 7:50

The Big Sick (R)

7/21-7/23: 11:40, 4:20, 8

7/24-7/26: 1:20, 4:20, 8:30

Baby Driver (R)

7/21-7/23: 2:50, 8:15

7/24-7/26: 3:20, 6:00

Movieland

Dunkirk (PG-13)

7/21-7/27: (11:10 a.m.), (1:50), 4:30, 7:15, 10

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (PG-13)

7/21-7/27: (3:45), 10:10

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets 3D (PG-13)

7/21-7/27: (12:30), 7

The Big Sick (R)

7/21-7/27: (11:15 a.m.), (2), 4:45, 7:30, 10:15

War for the Planet of the Apes (PG-13)

7/21-7/27: (12:15), (3:30), 6:45, 9:50

Wish Upon (PG-13)

7/21-7/27: 10:20

Spider-Man: Homecoming (PG-13)

7/21-7/27: (noon), (3:15), 6:15, 9:30

Despicable Me 3 (PG)

7/21-7/27: (11:20 a.m.), (1:40), 4, 6:30, 9

Baby Driver (R)

7/21-7/27: (11:40 a.m.), (2:20), 5, 7:40

Crystal Theatre

The Big Sick (R)

7/21-7/27: 7:30

The Beguiled (R)

7/22: 5:30

Wonder Woman (PG-13)

7/23: 4:30

Summer fun

The contest continues through Sept. 8.; enter at postindependent.com/summerfun. We award two monthly prizes: two passes each to Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park. In September we'll award the grand prize — a $500 gift card from Summit Canyon Mountaineering — and second and third prizes of $200 and $100 Summit Canyon gift cards.

Whit’s End: Books help us share the human experience

"We wanted to do something for you. Since books are the thing that bring us together and the place we turn to understand the world, we bought you a $50 gift certificate to a store called Book Train."

I received a text to that effect from my friends Robyn and Mandy the morning after I learned my sister died. I had moved to Glenwood Springs little more than a week earlier, and I was faced with the greatest personal tragedy I'd known. In some ways, I was fortunate; I lived with best friends and because of them I already had a community that would rally around me. But there are also internal aspects of grief that can only be faced alone.

Books are often my companion in such moments.

That afternoon I walked to Book Train, retrieved my gift certificate and asked the woman behind the counter for reading recommendations. What do you read when you're in mourning, when the new facts of your own story seem more like fiction? The night before I had curled up with my favorite book, "Looking for Alaska" by John Green. I literally curled around it — didn't read it, as exhaustion had set in — but its presence was still soothing.

The bookseller offered several suggestions, and then I sat on the floor to examine the gathered pile of books. I took home "A Man Called Ove" by Fredrik Backman, a novel about a man dealing with loss and the community that continues to give his life meaning. After I finished it days later, I left it in Florida with my mother, the person who taught me that books are home.

But our stories aren't always tidy. Especially in the early days after Cristin's death, I would often fold into crossword and logic puzzles for escape. I read for recognition, but sometimes I was slow to crack a book because they invited me to feel.

This week I read "The Futilitarians: Our Year of Thinking, Drinking, Grieving, and Reading" by Anne Gisleson. She knows that struggle well; it was the motivation for the reading group at the center of the memoir's story. Gisleson's youngest sisters, twins, committed suicide a year and a half apart. Although that isn't my story, her struggles resonated:

"She wasn't just doubting language, but also the redemptive power of the narrative. (Joan) Didion's proclamation 'We tell ourselves stories in order to live' suddenly seemed like neurotic grandstanding. She reversed it, wondering what stories her sisters told themselves in order to die," Gisleson wrote.

Months later, I again wandered the aisles of Book Train, looking for comfort after my eldest cat's death. I was in the midst of reading Terry Tempest Williams' "When Women Were Birds," and so the author's "Finding Beauty in a Broken World" seemed the right choice.

Another day, I returned to the shop and commented on both the sorrow and the comfort of what had become my death routine. My sister would have appreciated it; she was well acquainted with the power of losing herself in a book. Bookstores and libraries are filled with stories, with knowledge, with understanding.

That's what I found from the shop's cashier that day. As I described why I'd established such a routine, she shared her own experience with loss.

"It's the hardest part of being human," she said.

But the empathy offered by others — whether in writing or in a brief, compassionate conversation — is one of the best.

Carla Jean Whitley is the Post Independent's features editor. Send her your book recommendations at cj@postindependent.com.

Osage Gardens celebrates 25 years of culinary herb growth

Wanted: south-facing farm land with access to natural gas and good irrigation.

Those may not be the exact words they used, but 25 years ago a similar advertisement led Tom and Sarah Rumery to the New Castle property that would become Osage Gardens.

The couple became interested in organic farming while working in Boulder, and a trip to the Roaring Fork Valley set their sites on this area. They launched the business on a smaller piece of property two miles from where the expanded farm now sits. At the time, their focus was tomatoes; Tom had researched and calculated enough to know they could support themselves and three daughters with that crop. But as they established Osage Gardens, the Rumerys soon noticed a different demand: culinary herbs.

They shifted the business model to focus on basil, their dominant crop. They planted a row of basil and thought it was the most basil they'd ever seen. Now, however, it occupies one-and-a-half acres of the family's 20 acres. Of those 20 acres, three acres are covered by greenhouses. And that popular herb is in good company, with more than 20 others growing alongside it.

That's only one of several ways the company has grown in its first two-and-a-half decades. At one time, the Rumerys delivered the herbs themselves. Their customer base now includes about 35 Whole Foods stores in the Rocky Mountain region, as well as other natural grocers. Today, Front Range deliveries run twice a week, and their drivers make weekly deliveries within the Roaring Fork Valley.

Those wholesale orders are the farm's key business, but on-site sales allow the Rumerys and staff to maintain a community relationship, as well. The Farm Store is stocked not only with Osage Gardens herbs and greens, but also Colorado-raised meat and fish, honey (they work with a Boulder apiarist who maintains 20-plus on-site beehives) and more. Customers can join the farm's community-supported agriculture program and shop the store at a membership rate.

"There's a lot of food choices out there, but very few of them offer nutritional value. We're about high density," Sarah said.

It's very much a family operation. Daughter Tara Rumery, who works in customer service and sales, emphasizes the farm's quality-over-quantity philosophy; that's why the store is filled not only with their products, but everything needed to make a meal. A farm of Osage's size couldn't produce everything and maintain the quality standards they expect.

But it's not just a family business, it's a production farm. Manager Jared McDermott oversees the day-to-day operations, and you might say he's become like family himself. McDermott worked for the Rumerys years ago before moving to Vermont. After a visit home, he wrote the Rumerys a letter to say he'd like to become the farm's manager.

"I wear a lot of hats," McDermott said. "We are a farm, so everyone starts with farming."

His days include administrative business, maintaining the operation's organic status and more. He also oversees a team of 30 full-time employees. Those people work the farm itself, but also complete such tasks as filling clamshells with herbs to send to the wholesale distributors.

"One thing about this business is there's always something to do," Tom said.

It's a year-round operation, and the farm is busiest during November and December.

"Everybody wants an herb in their Thanksgiving meal," Sarah said.

And those herbs remain the heart of Osage Gardens, 25 years in.

Theater Awards

Live like a local: Samantha Zimmerman’s guide to Battlement Mesa

It's easy to get outside when you live in or visit Colorado; we're surrounded by beauty no matter where we turn. Samantha Zimmerman takes advantage of that fact. She's director of the Parachute/Battlement Mesa Park and Recreation District Programs and the Grand Valley Recreation Center and a three-year resident of Battlement Mesa. Here, she shares her favorite places to visit in her area.

Want to share your guide to living like a local? Visit tinyurl.com/livelikealocal.

Let's eat

"I enjoy going to the new and improved Battlement Mesa Golf Club restaurant, Tee'd Off Bar & Grill (3930 N. Battlement Parkway), for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Their service is friendly, prices are reasonable and their food is delicious."

Artistic hour

"The Grand Valley Recreation Center 398 Arroyo Drive) hosts a painting class at the rec center. Willa Higuera has done a great job teaching usually non-artists how to create a beautiful piece of art for the past two years. GVRC also has a wall dedicated to the Village Arts organization."

Where do you spend most of your free time?

"At home with my children, Saphire (17) and Jeremy (12)."

#optoutside

"Living in Battlement Mesa, it is easy to enjoy the outdoors. I can walk the paved paths right outside my back door, drive 45 minutes to Glenwood Springs or 45 minutes to Grand Junction."

Don't miss this

"PBMPRD recently opened a new community park, located between the middle school and the health center. Our recreation center is fantastic. Local residents can activate their membership for $35 to give them access to our indoor pool, basketball court, racquetball courts, walking track, fitness center, and much more. Battlement Mesa also has a world-renowned golf course. There is something for everyone to do in Battlement and Parachute."