Written by: Melany Arnot
Peak One. The name alone elevates your imagination! Peak One of our stunning Tenmile Range is located right off Main Street in Frisco, Colorado. The 12,805 foot summit is accessible via a 6.9 mile out-and-back trail offering glimpses into the past. Remnants of old miner’s cabins and numerous old mines sprinkle the landscape. It becomes easy to think about the way life was more than a hundred years ago. These old cabins were filled with families all looking for one thing — gold. What was left of this town, Masontown, was wiped out by an avalanche in 1912 and demolished by another slide in 1926. One last destruction of the area occurred when a fire in 1968 left just the rubble we see today.
I made my way down Main Street Frisco heading toward I-70. The trailhead is located .4 miles off Highway 9. Turn left on 2nd Street and follow 2nd an additional .5 miles until you reach the trailhead parking area at the end of the road. I stopped along the way for a little pre-hike fuel at the Butterhorn Bakery where I devoured the lox and bagel plate. Fresh salmon, cream cheese, capers and red onion, all stacked to perfection on a homemade bagel. I knew this would be the ticket to prepare me for the 3,686 feet of elevation gain that was quickly approaching.
After taking a careful audit of my pack and ensuring everything on my gear list was inside, I began my approach. The trail is quiet and peaceful. I try to start my longer hikes early in the day; there are fewer people and I have a better chance of missing the afternoon monsoon rainstorm.
Along the way I encountered fox, chipmunk, a variety of birds, wildflowers and a few mushrooms native to the area. Once I reached the summit I snapped photos looking up the Tenmile Range toward Breckenridge, over to Copper Mountain, and Lake Dillon. The views are astonishing. There was a sense of solitude standing on this peak. I inhaled in the pure high country air to re-energize for the descent.
I took my time coming off the peak. I carefully placed each step, avoiding slipping in the loose rock and scree on my way. The descent took me a little longer than anticipated. I passed fellow hikers on the way; we exchanged friendly smiles. We were all in the same place, seeking the same thing: quality time in the great outdoors!
Arriving back at the trail, I removed my pack and traded hiking shoes for flip flops. I’d acquired a thirst that needed to be quenched. I head to the Moose Jaw Saloon on Main Street. This place is a little rough around the edges but the history and outdoor patio make it a cool summer stop. The building was originally Frisco’s first little school house and tends to be filled with chatty locals who are already a few beers deep. I enjoyed a cold local pint and then made my way further down Main Street for an Ahi Salad at The Boatyard. This spot also offers a large back patio, local beers and craft cocktails.
The rain clouds began to build and the temperature was dropping. I headed home feeling thankful for my time spent playing outside in the Colorado sun. Ready to relax for the remainder of my day, I pulled out the trail maps to plan my next adventure. Stay tuned!