Trip Date: Jan 28 2017
Fairview peak is one of the most visible and distinguishable mountains from Boulder. I've been seeing this mysterious, dusty red peak for years but didn't know what it was called. Despite it's visibility, it was very hard to figure out which what mountain I was actually looking at. It didn't seem that anyone on the internet knew about this mountain.
Almost every morning on the drive to work I'd see it from the stop light at Baseline at Foothills and my curiosity grew into an obsession. I couldn't help but be reminded of Richard Dreyfus's character in "Close Encounters of the Third Kind". I don't think I ever had dreams about this mountain but I came pretty close. If I ate more mashed potatoes I'm sure I would have started molding it's shape at the dinner table. Maybe I should try this at the next dinner and Susan and Duane's house?
At least part of the reason for Fairview Peaks distinctive appearance was a wildfire in 2003 (yellow region in map below). The green area is the public Rosevelt National Forest lands. In hindsight, I'm noticing now that on the way back that I veered off public lands a bit.
You can explore a map of the area here: http://caltopo.com/m/11PC
About a third of the way in I found this ominous sign complete with bullets. I probably should have thought a little more about the 400 empty shotgun shells I walked over in the first canyon...
The views from the summit were spectacular. The desert-like appearance of the top of Fairview Pk and the views of alpine mountains to the west reminded me of Arches National Park.
The views shown in the last two pictures reminded me of one of my favorite paintings: "Sky Above Clouds" by Georgia O'Keefe. I recommend seeing this painting in the full size version at the Art Institute of Chicago (96x288in!).