Hut Trip: Betty Bear and Skinner Hut
This year, we decided to tackle a larger winter challenge: hike 6.2 miles (and 2500 feet) up to Betty Bear hut, then hike 4.1 miles (and 1200 feet of gain) up over Hagerman Pass (and the continental divide) to Skinner Hut...then back to Betty Bear! Our group was made up of 10 people, so we shared each hut with a few others (as opposed to reserving the entire hut for our group). We had snow on our hike in and out of Betty Bear, but our hike over the divide both days was clear and beautiful.
Shaun at the trailhead Ryan and Ling at the trailhead Setting off on the trail Looking down towards the end of the Hunter-Fryingpan river valley Kevin Noah having a snack before leaving the road Lisa Skinning up through the steep trees Noah, intensely focused on skinning Lisa skinning Brian and Noah reach a flat section Nearing the hut and the turnoff for Skinner Brian arrives at Betty Bear The view from Betty Bear on a clear moonlit night Betty Bear by night Kevin experiments with light painting Relaxing in Betty Bear with a game of Uno Ling Shaun and the infamous "Liter of Eggs" Betty Bear by morning Sunrise on a nearby ridgeline Sunrise from the hut Sunlight filtering through the trees at Betty Bear Our Betty Bear/Skinner Group (plus one) From left to right: Shaun, Ray, Kevin, Ryan, Ling, Brian, Lisa, Dave, Noah, and Carlos Carlos and Lisa before setting off to Skinner Hut Gearing up Leaving the hut and heading to Skinner Crossing the meadow towards Hagerman Pass Noah and Lisa Climbing up above Hagerman Tunnel Looking Northwest towards Ivanhoe Lake Brian Looking back towards the trail and an unnamed 12,654ft peak Reaching the summit of Hagerman pass and glimpsing the Mosquito Range Brian and Lisa on the divide Members of our group descend the far side of the divide The Mosquito Range as seen from Hagerman Pass Lisa descends a narrow stretch of road Noah descending from Hagerman Pass Lisa with Hagerman Pass in the background The view north from Skinner Hut Sunset on the Mosquito Range at Skinner Sunset on Mount Sherman, with Leadville below Skinner Hut Recovering at Skinner Hut One of the bedrooms in Skinner The view out the bedroom window The communal sleeping area in Skinner The Skinner Hut common room Shaun and Carlos relaxing in front of the fire Kevin. Yeah....that really sums it up Shaun cuts garlic Tending to the fire Lisa Sunrise over the Mosquito Range Alpenglow on Mount Massive Sun peeking just above Mount Sherman and Gemini Peak Sunrise through the trees at Skinner Skinner in the morning Brian Lisa Noah grabs some turns above the hut Noah grabs some turns above the hut Kevin finishes off his run Mount Massive in the distance Lisa Hagerman Pass and its wonderful view of a power line The western view from Hagerman Pass Descending the rocky ridge of Hagerman Pass Southern view from Hagerman Lisa's ski discovers an unfortunately hidden rock...which launched her out of her skis ...and dropped her in the snow Undisturbed snow along the trail Brian arrives back at Betty Bear hut Sunset back at Betty Bear Lisa relaxes at Betty Bear Noah hides from the camera at Betty Bear Playing hearts with the Score Log Noah records our scores on the Score Log Carlos, victorious, shows off the Score Log Carlos ready to descend the trail back to the trailhead Lisa eating breakfast The kitchen area of Betty Bear Departing the hut Skiers gear up Kevin decides to see how deep the snowpack is Noah descending through the trees Brian emerges from the rocky, icy, tree chutes of death Back on the road Kevin demonstrates his superior skinning ability Back near the trailhead Noah Lisa Carlos celebrates at the trailhead Dave and Shaun spot a brown bear on their way out from the trailhead