Today was exactly what everyone needed: Sunny weather, mid 70s temperatures, and a small group of active cannabis consumers determined to enjoy mother nature. Our September hike was our rescheduled Season Opener with Nectar CBD (originally planned for April), but the timing was perfect for a variety of reasons, including being able to welcome some out of town attendees for some Colorado adventures. Today’s hike took place on the Inner Canyon Loop at Castlewood Canyon State Park.
We arrived shortly before the hike to set up the flag, secure parking, and make sure that attendees knew how to find us (pay at the park pay station, follow the signs for Canyon Point parking lot). Once set up, attendees gradually started to arrive and hike policies were explained, specifically our consumption and COVID policies, reiterating our “no mask shaming” effort as well as our consume at our own risk structure. Nectar CBD then introduced themselves to our group of hikers, thanking them for their support of both events like these and also the brands that support them.
After a brief stop at the bathrooms, we headed out onto the trail. The first loop, Lake Gulch Trail, was paved and graveled, a mostly mild slope downwards towards the canyon. We stopped frequently for smoke breaks in the shade as well as to take in the beauty of the park and trail.
As we transitioned from one loop to the next over a small linking trail, we made our way to the Creek Bottom Trail. After a sharp decline on a rocky staircase, we found ourselves walking in the valley of the canyon and quickly heard water nearby. The Cherry Creek runs through this canyon, all the way from Denver, and the canyon is the site of a burst dam. The dam originally held water with it’s nearly 30-foot wall, but the dam eventually burst, sending a flood of water into the nearby town and areas. Now, you can hike right past and right up to the original dam wall, but hiking up the dam is not advised.
We found multiple areas in the shade with water access that allowed the crew to take their shoes off and soak their feet while partaking at will. Even Sven got to run around like a mad dog in the creek until he had sufficiently soaked himself and cooled down.
We gradually made our way through the canyon until it was time to cross back over the creek and make our way to the Rim Top Trail. We saved this trail for the return trip, as the creek seemed more inviting, and we were right. Rim Top Trial gives you some truly incredible, expansive views of the canyon, and a true perspective of how far you hiked down into and up out of the valley, but is otherwise fairly flat and dusty. And the incline that we hiked up to the trail would have been treacherous coming down.
We followed this trail back to the start of the loop, making our way back along the connecting trail and then taking the unseen half of the first loop on our way back to the parking lot. This last mile or so was the most demanding, not because of its skill level but rather because the entire crew was exhausted. We did just over 6.5 miles total, with more than 750 feet in elevation gain, no small task even for those accustomed to the altitude.
As the parking lot came into view, thoughts of dinner and cold refreshments began to permeate the group. Many hung around for a bit afterwards to play with the dogs and get a cold water, while plans for dinner were made for each of the groups.
With everything that this year has thrown our way, from COVID to snow in September, it was truly refreshing to get outdoors with great people and enjoy some beautiful weather and incredible cannabis. Our next hike and last hike of Season 5 will take place on October 11th in Golden Gate Canyon State Park. Check out the details on the plan page for more information. We hope you can make it.
Until then, happy CannaVenturing!
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P.P.S. More photos! Send in yours to have them included!