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Adventure Rockies

“Untitled” by Kari Andresen, Colorado

"Untitled" by Kari Andresen, taken at El Paso County Fair in Calhan, CO. To view more of Kari's photography, please visit her Flickr photostream.

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Season of the Match

Last spring and fall, the Colorado mountains were plagued by wildfires. They raged all over the state, popping up and spreading like—well, like wildfire. On Oct. 30, one fire in particular started less than half a mile from my family’s house on the outskirts of Boulder, Colo. Early in the morning, a tiny, unnoticed spark leapt from an illegal campfire and quickly proceeded to engulf the hillsides above it.

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“Near Petro” by Greg Aitkenhead, Utah

near petro "Near Petro" by Greg Aitkenhead, Utah. A lone pickup heads back to Utah's I-70 after visiting the pictographs of Black Dragon Canyon in the San Rafael Swell. To view more of Greg's work, please visit his Flickr page or http://gregaitkenheadphotography.com/.

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“Wyoming Summer Evening” by Russell Schnitzer, Wyoming

Wyoming Summer Evening "Wyoming Summer Evening" by Russell Schnitzer. Fisherman Sean Anderson looking to match the evening hatch on a western Wyoming river in late July. Click here to view more of Russell's photography.

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Summer’s Summits

Through the high meadows we hiked towards Natahki Lake. Glacier’s wildflowers were in full, lush bloom as we followed an old stream bed to a cliff band below the lake. Goat trails, as they typically do, provided an excellent path through the scree and onto more stable rock. We had a quick break along the shore of the azure lake and then made our way to Altyn Peak, climbing the northwestern slope, admiring the deft mountain goats lounging in a snowfield. From the top of Altyn (7,947 feet), we again snacked and took in the views of the Swiftcurrent Valley.

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“Shale Path to Cougar Peak Lookout” by Rick Landry, Montana

Shale Path to Cougar Pk LO "Shale Path to Cougar Peak Lookout" by Rick Landry, Montana. Cougar Peak Lookout was constructed in 1952 from a Forest Service standard plan for an L-4 style lookout house. It replaced the original structure which dated back to 1930. It commands an impressive view of the river valley and the Bitterroot Range to the west from its 6,694 foot elevation. To view more of Rick's work, please visit his Flickr page.

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Central Idaho’s Best Shortcut

Central Idaho is a maze of roadless areas, which is terrific, until it's time to travel. So it's understandable that I get excited when the Trail Creek Road is open for a few months during summer. The road, which connects the base of Idaho's tallest peak, Mt Borah (elevation 12,662 feet), to the tony resort town of Sun Valley, shaves a cool 40 miles off the journey from my little mountain town of Salmon. I like to pretend the route is faster.

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“Untitled” by Matt Guymon, Utah

On the Southfork of the Ogden River last week. To view more of Matt's work, please visit his Flickr page. or freestonephotography.weebly.com.

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High-Speed Runoff

Born and raised in Boulder, Colorado, I’m a bred-in-the-bone mountain girl. The word camping conjures up for me nothing but images of frigid alpine lakes and crumbling granite talus fields—and always a brilliant purple columbine flower for a true Rockies feel. But earlier this summer, I had my first experience backpacking the canyons of Utah’s Escalante with my father, and I witnessed an incredibly cool hydrologic event.

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Fiddlers and Fish

The sounds of yesteryear rang out July 23, primarily from the instruments of Montana fiddlers but also from some equally talented musicians from several neighboring states, when the Montana State Old Time Fiddlers Association (MSOTFA) held its 43rd Annual Fiddle Contest. And when the competition was complete, high-quality fishing could be found less than a half-hour away. For the first time, this event was held in beautiful Choteau, Montana. Anyone who can’t appreciate the beauty of “Charmaine” and the peacefulness of a gurgling creek is no one I care to associate with (and maybe is someone who shouldn’t be trusted).

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