Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument

This park preserves an area where a lot of fossils have been found, including the trunks of several redwood trees. All of this was caused by the flood, of course, although my tax-funded government takes the position that it all happened 35 million years ago, or some silliness like that.

I went birding here back in 2002 when I was in Colorado Springs for a conference. At that time, I had the place to myself. I took my wife today because I figured it wouldn’t be crowded and I remembered it as not having a lot of hills.

It wasn’t crowded, exactly, but there were other people around. We were never alone on the trails for more than 10 minutes at a time. We hiked about four miles at 8,600 feet, and there were more hills than I recalled. The weather was beautiful, although at that altitude, the sun was hot.

We stopped by the 1878 Hornbeck Homestead and walked around, although we couldn’t go in the buildings. The grounds were swarming with Wyoming Ground Squirrels, which look and act like miniature prairie dogs.




Here are some of the redwood trunks scattered along the trails in the main part of the park.




Pikes Peak towers over everything in this part of Colorado.




That’s the Hornbeck Homestead in the distance.



Some of the aspen groves were just budding, but others were in full leaf.




The trails are a good high-altitude workout, and, while it doesn’t have the breath-taking splendor of a lot of places in Colorado, it is beautiful.

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