Crested Butte Hiking Trails: Judd Falls

We are escaping the Arkansas heat this week in one of our favorite spots in the whole world.

Crested Butte, Colorado, hiking with kids, camping with kids, summer vacation, judd falls hike

Crested Butte, Colorado.

Crested Butte, Colorado, hiking with kids, camping with kids, summer vacation, judd falls hikej, gothic


We headed out this morning for our first real hike of the week.  Judd Falls.  We drove through the tiny settlement of Gothic, Colorado.  Students of all ages were out in the fields studying, courtesy of the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory.  This collection of cabins has got to be one of the coolest places on earth to spend a summer.

We came through this same spot six years ago with my family.  That was back when there were only six grandkids (3 more have since been added to the mix).  We had a wild and crazy time camping at Emerald Lake several miles above Gothic.

Crested Butte, Colorado, hiking with kids, camping with kids, summer vacation, judd falls hike

I think that was the summer I fell in love with summer in Crested Butte and the joy that is a pack of children playing in fields full of Colorado wildflowers, fishing in streams and imagining endless uses for rocks and sticks of all shapes and sizes.

Crested Butte, Colorado, hiking with kids, camping with kids, summer vacation, judd falls hike, aspen trees

We reached our trailhead soon after passing Gothic.  We hiked through Aspen groves and past little streams to get to Judd Falls.

Crested Butte, Colorado, hiking with kids, camping with kids, summer vacation, judd falls hike, aspen trees, kids hiking

Simon is on his own feet these days and finally out of the pack, which brings its own challenges, but I loved watching him discover the rocky trail on his own.  He found several stick and rock treasures, spotted four chipmunks and was overjoyed to reach the falls at the end.  His enthusiasm is contagious, and while most of us are in constant awe at the surroundings no matter how many times we’ve been to Colorado, there are a couple among us who need his eyes to show them the way to pure joy.

Crested Butte, Colorado, hiking with kids, camping with kids, summer vacation, judd falls hike

Crested Butte, Colorado, hiking with kids, camping with kids, summer vacation, judd falls hike

After reaching the falls, we came back for lunch to our home for the week, a condo that has been graced to us by dear friends.  I fixed soup, gloriously happy that it’s cool enough outside to enjoy soup.  Then four of us headed into town on rented bikes while Simon napped with Taido.

Crested Butte, Colorado, camping with kids, summer vacation, downtown crested butte

The bike trail between Mt Crested Butte and Crested Butte is a highlight of this area.  We hit up a charming spot for ice cream and into Blue Moon Books to read and rest on the cushy chairs.  Then Simon and Taido met us at the town park, but not before Simon got some ice cream.  Because he is not about to be left out of ice cream.

Crested Butte, Colorado, camping with kids, summer vacation, downtown crested butte

Crested Butte, Colorado, camping with kids, summer vacation, downtown crested butte

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