Adventure on HooDoo Creek: the boys explore Mount Gunnison in Colorado

Mount Gunnison was calling as we three 13 year old boys laid our plans and set out on our next Colorado back country adventure. We had studied our Forest Service map and convinced our parents that we knew what we were doing.

It seemed fairly straightforward. We would follow the Forest Service trail about a mile toward Minnesota Pass from Beaver Reservoir up the East Fork of Minnesota Creek.

To get there you headed southeast from Paonia, Colorado following Minnesota Creek along road 710.


Recommended For You

The Internet Marketing Newsletter PLR Membership**

INTERNET MARKETERS: Your Biggest Headache Has Just Been SOLVED! World Class Monthly PLR Writing Service From 2017 Internet Marketer Of The Year Nick James

ThemeMaker Unlimited Personal Licence

ThemeMarker by ProStyler allows you to create your own completely custom WordPress themes without ever messing about with code

Animaytor Enterprise Personal | Studio Grade Local Videos

Animaytor Enterprise Personal | DONE-FOR-YOU Niche Explainer Videos, Local Niche Video Templates, Scripts and Voiceovers plus Graphics Creator! LOWEST One-Time Exclusive Price TODAY Only!


Paonia, Colorado, was a quiet little town about 25 miles up in the mountains from Delta, Colorado following highway 92 and 133.

Growing up in the area I saw Paonia valley as a Shangri-La. The mountain ringed valley provided a glorious abundance of apples, peaches, cherries, plums, and pears, and the 4th of July was a community celebration called “Cherry Days”.

Completing the Shangri-La illusion, southeast of Paonia, Mount Lamborn and Landsend Peak form an amazingly close mountainous backdrop for the town.

East of Lamborn, above Minnesota Creek, Mount Gunnison stands tall, remote and seemingly inaccessible. We three boys meant to change that perspective, taking on the peak, or at least taking a good shot at it.

Ron, Larry and I laid out our provisions across the living room floor, checking our lists and divying up the loads accordingly. Larry with his weight training had the dubious honor of the heaviest pack load.

Ron and I split the remaining supplies.

Our adventure forty some years ago was outfitted in a pre-modern camping gear era – at least in our lives. My Boy Scout backpack was an open bag into which everything was piled, our tent a piece of tarp strung between two trees. And my bedding – a couple of wool blankets that Mom thought couldn’t get too badly damaged. Interesting the way the world and our expectations change over time.

My folks dropped us off up at the Beaver Reservoir dam, and the adventure began. We excitedly covered the first mile of the trail quickly. Around a mile, a side trail turns sharp left leading around the side of Mount Gunnison, over to Coal Creek on the other side.

That was not for us though. It appeared on the map that you could head directly east at that juncture, following HooDoo Creek as it led up a draw toward the summit of Mount Gunnison. You could see the beginnings of a trail heading up that direction – the trail we chose to follow.


Recommended For You

ReachInfluencer Elite

It is a cloud based software that lets you seal sponsored post contract deals with top influencers by reaching out to multiple influencers in ANY niche on Instagram and Twitter with an automated messaging system in just few clicks.

CoreSEO Pro Yearly

CoreSEO is the one and the only software application that addresses all the optimization requirements that Google has for any website. In fact, it is a total and comprehensive solution for all the SEO updates from Google Updates.

Linkedtify 2

Purchase The Best LinkedIn Software and Training and get rewarded with consistent leads. Proof Inside!


The excitement of exploration drove us onward, upward through aspen groves on the lower flanks of Mount Gunnison. Always keeping HooDoo Creek within sight to our left, we followed that narrow, windy trail through the increasingly dense brush.

It became apparent that the “trail” we were following was probably a game trail going nowhere in particular. Hitting multiple forks on the path, within an hour of leaving the main Minnesota Pass Trail our trail disappeared completely. Undeterred, we struggled onward and upward through dense brush for another hour or so.

The relatively open aspen grove transitioned into dense pine forest, the trek becoming even more challenging as dissension arose within the ranks. It was unclear that there was any easy route through the timber, or which way to go, and some were questioning if we were – lost.

Lost? How could we possibly be lost?

Three 13 year old boys way off trail, bumbling around in dense forests on the flanks of Mount Gunnison in the West Elk Wilderness Area – lost – it’s possible. Ron climbed a taller pine in the forest to see if he could make out where we were. It was obvious where we were – in the middle of a deep pine forest somewhere on the side of the mountain.

We seldom apply – lost – to our adventures. Afterall, we spent days and days out exploring the mountains, creeks and draws throughout the whole Paonia valley. As long as we could hear HooDoo Creek cascading down the draw to our north, we hadn’t strayed far from it. We knew we could follow it down to the East Fork of Minnesota Creek and our main trail out.

But the upward trek toward the summit of Mount Gunnison was questionable. The journey became bushwhacking, and the day was waning. So, we halted our upward struggle, worked our way across to HooDoo Creek, and found a wonderful spot on the creek bank under the tall pines to pitch camp.

The tarp strung between trees, the three of us jockeyed for which rock we were going to be sleeping on underneath it. With a fire in the fire ring, we whipped up standard gourmet camp fare – Lipton chicken noodle soup – accompanied by excellent shoestring potatoes and home made cookies. Following rousing camping songs, where we learned that Larry had a budding career in the bluegrass industry, we settled in for a memorable night in the woods.

The following morning dawned cold and rainy. Yes, a little rain into the “tent” during the night, soaked the three of us to the skin. We struck camp early and waded through dripping wet brush, plodding back down from the lower ridges of Mount Gunnison, continuing singing those same great tunes we shared around the campfire.

Maybe we understood why there was no trail straight
up next to HooDoo Creek, leading to the top of Mount Gunnison. “Wouldn’t it be great if there were a trail up there?” we laughed, enjoying the view of the peak as we waited at Beaver Reservoir for our ride.

Reflecting back forty-some years on that wonderful adventure, I probably wouldn’t change a thing, except for the gear. And now that I’ve found that I can begin and end that journey in the comfort of nearby motel accommodations in either Cedaredge or Delta.

I am excited to re-explore that wonderful area.


Recommended For You

Store Buildr - The Coffee House

The Ultimate ‘Done For You’ Niche Website Store!

Vidmonial 2.0 Diamond

The upgraded version of the #1 video testimonial software.


This post was curated & Posted using : RealSpecific

Thank you for taking the time to read our article.

Interested in building a blog or auto-blog like this one ? Or just want to order one ?  Join our "Blogging Tips Tricks and Resources Skype" Group and let's chat about it. 

Join "Blogging Tips Tricks and Resources Skype" HERE

Interested in Starting your own Roku TV Channel ? Or interested in learning how to build one ? Join our "Roku TV Channel Development" Skype Group and let's chat about it. 

Join "Roku TV Channel Development" HERE


If you enjoyed our content, we'd really appreciate some "love" with a share or two.

And ... Don't forget to have fun!



MOTO Theme - powerful & versatile WordPress theme.

NEW Software Replaces EVERY WordPress Theme On The Planet ? Get UNLIMITED Top-Performing Sites In ANY Niche With Over 150 Stunning Customizable Templates ? COMMERCIAL RIGHTS INCLUDED!

Auto Chatbot Builder (Create Custom Bots By Filling In A Simple Form)

Internet’s #1 Chatbot For Websites. “AI” Technology Designed To Get You More Leads and More Sales On Autopilot! LOWEST One-Time Launch Special Price Today ONLY!

2019 Signature Series PLR

Signature Series PLR. It's the most elegant and advanced PLR you've ever seen.