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Cottonwood Pass Opens - Snow & Mountain Scenery Photos (May 21, 2009)

Beautiful Colorado Snow - May 2009
Cottonwood Pass, CO

Because some of my beloved web visitors have attention deficit problems, I begin this pictorial with the biggest "bang" ... me standing on a massive snow bank at Cottonwood Pass. Look at all that snow! (I dedicate this photo to my friends Florida, Texas, Arizona and other southern regions of the USA.)

Cottonwood Pass open earlier this week. Chaffee County Road 306 and Gunnison County Road 209, the two roads meeting at Cottonwood Pass, are officially open. This makes the drive from Buena Vista to Taylor Park Reservoir and Crested Butte much shorter.

This morning, on this dreary and drizzly morning in Buena Vista, Colorado, I made my first visit to the divide by car for the warm season. It was only 52 degrees at 7:45 a.m., and with the precipitation, I was hopeful it might be snowing in the high altitude regions in the mountains. Sadly, it was not. However, a real estate agent and long-time resident Mal Sillars (www.MalSillars.com) verified it was snowing yesterday during his visit. Ahhhhh, you gotta love Colorado! :)

Cottonwood Pass, CO
Extra Photos

The sign at Cottonwood Pass.

Cottonwood Pass, CO

Cottonwood Pass, CO

Two views looking west toward the mountains, the pool of water in the foreground and points west in Gunnison County.
Three Apostles Colorado I closer-up photo of the Three Apostles. (Ice Mountain is the tallest mountain with an altitude of ~13,900 feet.)

NOTE: You can see nicer photos of this range from my hike of Huron Peak in 2008.

Snow Wall Another photo of myself leaning against a wall of snow. I'm 6 foot 1, so that's a 10 foot tall snow bank! :)
Cottonwood Pass Colorado The snowy mountain scenery as I approached the pass on Chaffee County Road 306.
Colorado Snow Look at the largeness of the snow cornices up there. Be careful folks!
Chaffee County Road 306 Plenty of snow remains in the forest just below timberline. If you happen to plan to hike to Lost Lake or elsewhere in this region, be prepared to do some significant postholing in soft snow. ;)
Pine trees at timberline.
A view of Unnamed Peak ~12,800 as I traveled downhill on Chaffee County Road 306 back toward Buena Vista.

Photos provided by Steve Garufi in Buena Vista, Colorado.

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