Colorado Front Range (Denver-Boulder) Chapter

The Colorado Front Range chapter of American Pilgrims covers the area between Ft. Collins and Colorado Springs, Colorado centered on Denver and Boulder. The purpose of local chapters is to keep members connected to the Camino and to introduce new people to the phenomenon. We plan to accomplish this in a number of ways, such as social events, walks, mentoring future pilgrims and serving as a local host for hospitalero training through American Pilgrims.

  • To offer opportunities for local pilgrims to gather and hold events related to the Camino.
  • To mentor future pilgrims, promote the pilgrimage and American Pilgrims through social gatherings.
  • To serve as a local host for hospitalero training in the Colorado Front Range region.

The chapter will be scheduling walks, talks, potlucks and much more! These will be listed here but you may also want to check the Local and Regional Events page for non-chapter events that may be of interest. Contact chapter coordinators Kris Ashton, Chris Petty and Gene McCullough at [email protected] for more information. If you'd like to be added to the chapter's e-mail list, click HERE.


• If you'd like to be added to the chapter's e-mail list, click HERE. For information about the chapter and its activities or about membership in American Pilgrims, contact us at [email protected].

• Looking for a day hike in the Front Range area? We'd suggest checking out the website Day Hikes near Denver! If you live between Larkspur and Longmont there will be something to your liking close by.

•  The chapter now has its very own sello! If you've already requested and received your credential, we can make an arrangement for you to receive your first stamp before you leave home. Just contact us through the chapter e-mail address, [email protected]. We will endeavor to have the sello at all chapter events as well. Don't have your credential yet? When you return to American Pilgrims' main site, click on Request a Credential. On the Request page read all of the text at the top of the page and then carefully complete the form. Triple check your entries before clicking SUBMIT. Errors result in delays and even non-delivery! (This sello doesn't actually do anything for you other than indicate that you're on your way!)

• Many peregrinos maintain blogs before, during or after their Camino. If any chapter participants have created one, let us know and we'll link to it here..

• You've arrived! You have your compostela. You've attended the Pilgrims' Mass. You've hugged the Saint. Now what? You need to scan through this blog entry by the venerable Johnnie Walker: 20 things to see and do in Santiago de Compostela

• There are a thousand and one packing lists out there but THIS is our take on the topic.

• And lastly, the Xunta de Galicia has produced a document "Emergency guidebook for pilgrims on the Way of St James". It's filled with good practical ideas and planning and preparation and important information about safety. Recommended downloading by clicking HERE!

Scheduled Events: 

While not an event per se, you will be interested to know that Rocky Mountain PBS will be broadcasting Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago at the following times on their Create/World channel (RMPBS-3):

Tuesday, December 18, 11:00 PM
Wednesday, December 19, 7:00 AM
Saturday, December 22, 9:00 PM
Sunday, December 23, 1:00 AM

High Line Canal walk
Saturday, December 29, 2018, 9:00 AM - 12:00 noon

It's the week between Christmas and New Year's Day and you're fried! You need to take a walk!

Join the Colorado Front Range Chapter for a walk on the High Line Canal in Littleton. We'll take advantage of the route staying close to Broadway in order to take the Broadway “0” bus from Broadway and County Line Road back to the origin. We’ll conclude with an optional sip ‘n’ chat at Solid Grounds Coffee House near the starting point.

Parking is available in front of Solid Grounds (but read the signs) and the canal path is reached a block north. We’ll walk south and west (upstream) to McLellan Reservoir (just before the C‑470 crossing) where we’ll take a short jog over to Broadway on the Centennial Trail. The total distance will be 6.5 miles although there will be several “bailout” points where the Canal crosses or comes close to Broadway. From the end we’ll take the Broadway bus (the “0”, $2.60 full fare, $1.30 seniors 65+, exact change) back to the starting point (Panama Drive). Sitting around Solid Grounds afterward will be an especially good opportunity for those who haven’t yet walked to chat with those who have.

If you have definite plans to walk or cycle on the Camino for the first time leaving January or February 2019 and would like to receive a scallop shell and a blessing, let us know and we'll come prepared. However if you can attend the late winter "formal" Shell Ceremony, we highly recommend waiting for that. Be watching for an announcement!

Solid Grounds Coffee House
6504 South Broadway
Littleton CO

Like to download the details of the trailhead, the route and the endgame? Click HERE.

There's no need to RSVP but if you'd like to let us know you're coming you can always contact us through [email protected]Day of event contact will be Chris at 563-505-6105.

Jim Creek trail Snowshoe/XC ski outing
Friday, January 11, 2019, 10:00 AM at the trailhead but see carpooling option

The Colorado Front Range Chapter is heading to the Jim Creek trail near Winter Park for its fourth annual snow outing! This is a lovely trail that collects snow early in the season and keeps it late. 

We’ll suggest two options for meeting up: Option one will be to meet at the upper end of the Wooly Mammoth parking lot (upper end under post AA) between 8:30 and 8:45 AM to assemble carpooling and leave at 8:45. This is a Friday so maybe traffic won’t be too bad — should be about an hour and a quarter from there to the trailhead. Option two is driving straight there to arrive at 10:00. Take I-70 to US-40 toward Berthoud Pass and Winter Park. Beyond the bottom of the Pass, take a right at the first traffic light (opposite the entrance to the Winter Park Ski Area). Park right there — the trail starts at the “Bonfils-Stanton Foundation” sign.

This is a beautiful tour but we must offer the following advisements: This is winter in the mountains! The suggested turn-around point is 2 1/4-miles in but turning around at any point is certainly an option. This is at moderately a high altitude — the trailhead is at about 9,200 ft and the suggested turn-around point is just short of 10,000 ft. The trail is wide and not at all steep for about the first mile then it becomes slightly more narrow with a few steepish sections. All in all, it’s not terribly difficult.

This is winter in the mountains (!) and so the appropriate items should be in your pack:

Map and compass; Sunglasses, sunscreen; Extra layered clothing, gloves, cap/headband; Headlamp/flashlight; First-aid supplies; Waterproof matches; Repair kit for skis or snowshoes; Food for the day; Water for the day.

If you have definite plans to walk or cycle on the Camino for the first time later in 2019 and would like to receive a scallop shell and a blessing, just let us know through [email protected]. However if you’re leaving after the end of March, we would strongly suggest that you wait for our “formal” Shell Ceremony. More on that later!

Click HERE for the trail map. Click HERE for REI’s winter checklist. And the Wooly Mammoth parking lot.

Any who are interested could convene at The Buffalo in Idaho Springs afterward to recover. We can sort that out on event day.

This is a snow or shine event — within reason! If we decide to cancel there’ll be an email as soon as we decide that. If you’ll let us know through [email protected] (name, email and mobile phone) we’ll make a special effort to reach you. Event day contact will be Gene at 303-999-5179. After about 9:00 that morning, phone coverage will be on again-off again.

(We’ve tried this outing twice and have had to cancel at the last minute — once because Berthoud Pass was closed due to an avalanche. Should something like that happen again, we’ll have Hefferman Gulch up the Mount Evans Road from Idaho Springs as a backup. Be watching for late breaking news!)

We look forward to seeing a bunch of you there!

Third Sunday tertulia at The Goods
Sunday, January 20, 2019, 3:00 - 4:30ish

Tertulia? “Un grupo informal de personas que se reúnen habitualmente para conversar o recrearse.” “An informal meeting of people who gather regularly to talk about current affairs, arts, etc.” Well, we all know what “etc” means!

Past and future pilgrims are invited to convene for conversation, a small plate or two and a beverage. This will be a great chance for not-yet-veterans to talk with experienced pilgrims and for the experienced pilgrims to get some great ideas for their next walk. Or simply to talk about whatever comes up! The Goods Happy Hour menu will be available.

Mark Whistler, one of the owners of The Goods and a Camino veteran himself, is our host.

The Goods Restaurant
(Immediately east of and in the same building as the Tattered Cover on Colfax)
2550 East Colfax Avenue
Denver, CO. 80206
Parking is available in the parking structure immediately west of the Tattered Cover or on the street.
Download the flyer

We hope to have a bunch of people at these informal third-Sunday events. Event day contact will be Gene at 303-999-5179. We look forward to seeing a bunch of you there!

Presentation: The Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage Route in Japan
Wednesday, February 27, 2019, 7:00 PM

Denver REI Flagship Store
1416 Platte Street
Denver, CO  80202

The Kumano Kodo is a series of ancient pilgrimage routes that crisscross through the dense forests and mountains of the Kii Peninsula of Japan. The ancient pilgrimage is one of only two UNESCO World Heritage pilgrimage routes in the world, the other being the Camino de Santiago in Spain. In 2015, the two routes were designated as “Dual Pilgrimage Routes” and pilgrims who walk both routes are recognized as Dual Pilgrims.

Join Kumano Kodo veteran Kris Ashton to follow in the footsteps of 11th-century imperial pilgrims in exploring the sacred Kumano Sanzan (the three Grand Shrines of Kumano: Hongu Taisha, Hayatama Taisha and Nachi Taisha). Along the way, discover both the similarities and differences between the two World Heritage Pilgrimage Routes.

This is an REI event, and while free, we strongly suggest that you register with REI to guarantee a seat. Click HERE to sign up. Contact the chapter through [email protected] for more information.

A Walk across Spain, A Journey through Time: An Introduction to the Camino de Santiago

Ft. Collins REI Store (4025 South College AvenueFort Collins, CO 80525), Wednesday, February 20, 2019, 7:00 PM
Westminster REI Store (14696 Delaware StreetWestminster, CO 80023), Thursday, February 21, 2019, 7:00 PM
Boulder REI Store
 (1789 28th StreetBoulder, CO  80301), Monday, March 4, 2019, 7:00 PM
Denver REI Flagship Store (1416 Platte StreetDenver, CO  80202), Wednesday, March 6, 2019, 7:00 PM

Join Camino veterans and Colorado Front Range Chapter coordinators Kris Ashton, Chris Petty and Gene McCullough for a presentation on the Camino de Santiago, the medieval pilgrimage route across northern Spain. The presentation will cover the historical and cultural background of the Camino and the practicalities of walking the routes including distances and difficulty, packing lists, transportation and modern support infrastructure (lodging, eating, etc). Whether you have only heard of the Camino (or you saw the film The Way) and are looking for more information or whether you are actively planning your trip, this talk will be entertaining and informative.

This is an REI event, and while free, we strongly suggest that you register with REI to guarantee a seat. These usually fill!  Click on the desired store below to sign up. Contact the chapter through [email protected] for more information.
Ft. Collins REI Store
Westminster REI Store
Boulder REI Store

Denver REI Flagship Store

Are you interested in learning more about the Camino?
The Colorado Front Range Chapter Camino Mentor Program can pair individuals who have questions about their upcoming Camino with a nearby veteran who can answer questions. Contact [email protected] for details. Experienced Camino walkers and cyclists who would like to serve as mentors should contact us so that you can be added to our resource list. Potential mentors should provide us with your name, ZIP-code and a brief rundown of your experience including walking or cycling, which route and when. Also you can visit American Pilgrims on the Camino on Facebook for great dialogue, photos and a running commentary about the Camino from like-minded pilgrims.

If you'd like to be added to the chapter's e-mail list, click HERE. For information about the chapter and its activities or about membership in American Pilgrims, contact us at [email protected].

Rev 12/18/18