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.


ANNOUNCEMENTS:

• 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!)

Several times a year American Pilgrims provides the required training to serve as an hospitalero in albergues on the Camino. There will be a session near Colorado Springs, Colorado Friday September 13th to Sunday the 15th. If that's something you've been thinking about, this is a golden opportunity to obtain the training without incurring an expense airline ticket! See the Hospitaleros page for requirements and further information!

• 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!


EVENTS:

CASTLEWOOD CANYON STATE PARK, COLORADO
6-mile, figure-8 hike
Saturday, 18 May 2019, depart 9:00 AM

This outing will provide a nice hike in Castlewood Canyon State Park southeast of Denver but also a walk through a century-old bit of Front Range history. In 1890, farmers built a dam across Cherry Creek for irrigation purposes. On August 3, 1933 the dam broke, sending a catastrophic wall of water into downtown Denver. The disaster did leave behind the beautiful Castlewood Canyon.

Take I-25 to exit 184, Meadows Parkway/Founders Parkway and turn east onto Founders (CO-86). Follow CO-86 approximately 8 ½ miles to Castlewood Canyon Rd. Turn right/south and continue approximately 3 miles to the park’s west entrance. 673 Castlewood Canyon Road, Castle Rock should get you there. (If you find yourself in Franktown, you missed that turn.) The entrance fee is $7/car. (Did you know that the Denver Public Library has State Park passes that can be checked out?!) We will convene inside the west entrance in the large parking lot near restroom facilities.

Our 6-mile hike will consist of two loops walked in a figure-8 pattern. We’ll start by accessing the Creek Bottom Trail from the parking area and following that past pools and a waterfall to the dam. After checking out the dam ruins we’ll cross Cherry Creek and head up the Inner Canyon Trail to a parking area with facilities.After a short rest, we’ll head back down the Lake Gulch Trail that drops down to the shore of what was formerly the lake behind the dam. We’ll cross back over the creek and head up the Rimrock Trail which we’ll follow until it drops back down into the canyon. From here we’ll regain the Creek Bottom Trail to the access point that will take us back to the cars.

The walk is entirely on trails in good condition, with plenty of places to stop and enjoy the amazing scenery of the canyon. There is the option for a 4-mile hike for those short on time or energy.

Be sure you have plenty of water, a hat and sunscreen, as there is little shade on these trails and no available drinking water!

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].

Click HERE for the park brochure. Click HERE for expanded event information.

This is a rain or shine event — within reason — mud can be a problem! (If we decide to cancel there’ll be an e–mail the day before.) Although not necessary, you may let us know that you’ll be coming through [email protected]. Event day contact will be Kris at 720-733-6750.

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DENVER, COLORADO
Third Sunday tertulia at The Goods
Sunday, May 19, 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 Chris at 563-505-6105‬ or Kris at 720-733-6750. We look forward to seeing a bunch of you there!

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SUMMIT COUNTY, COLORADO
Two-night trip to Uncle Bud's Hut above Turquoise Lake in Summit County
Friday and Saturday nights, September 20 and 21, 2019

Update of 12 April: The hut has filled! We're expecting this to be an extraordinary outing and if it proves out, we'll likely be repeating it in the future.

For some time the Chapter has been thinking about organizing an overnight trip and we've decided that it's time to act! The proposal is two nights at Uncle Bud's Hut, one of the 10th Mountain Division Hut Association facilities, at 11,400 ft elevation above Turquoise Lake west of Leadville.

Uncle Bud's is typical of the 10th Mountain huts. Full description of the facility, setting and access is to be found at: huts.org/The_Huts/uncle_buds.php Click on the More InfoSummer Routes & Trailheads and Videos links for details. Other must watch information: How to Plan a Hut Trip and General Hut Amenities. In addition a topo map of the area is to be found HERE. You will notice that the website mentions that the hut can be reached either by a 4-mile (1,300+ ft elev gain) hike on the Colorado Trail or by driving on a 4WD Forest Service road to within 1/4 mile of the hut on backcountry Forest Service roads. At the moment we don't know the nature of these USFS roads. We intend to scout out both of these routes during the summer.

10th Mountain Division Hut Association policy prohibits bringing dogs to the huts and American Pilgrims liability insurance prohibits dogs from attending chapter events. 

It should be noted that this is not exactly a Camino-like experience in that everything needed for the visit in the way of food, sleeping bag and pad will be carried in on your back. That will not be a Camino-weight load! We will help organize carpooling and meals later. We might do communal meals (in which case $ to cover costs) or break up into smaller groups who would arrange their own menus. We may arrange a pre-trip organization meeting. All TBD. 

Reservations and organization: The cost of the hut is $33 pp per night plus (rounded) $5 tax, so $71 pp total. Immediately we'll want an email from you committing to the event followed within a few days by a check. The particulars for the check will be supplied upon receiving your intention email. We will not offer a cancellation refund - if that becomes necessary we will help you find a replacement but it will ultimately be your responsibility. We've already booked some of the total 16 spots but the balance won't last forever. It would be nice if we could fill the hut!

Your email of intention or questions should be directed to the Chapter through [email protected]

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 04/15/19