Base Camp Denver: 101 Hikes in Colorado's Front Range

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 04 Dec 2019

Member Reviews

I live in Boulder and was recommended this book by a friend who hikes a lot. My husband and I are also avid hikers (one of the main reasons why we moved to Boulder), so when I saw this book available to read on NetGalley, I knew I had to check it out.

This book is an excellent guide to hikes all along the Front Range from up in Fort Collins down to Colorado Springs. I love how the author picks out certain hikes for each area, narrowing down his recommendations. From my experience hiking in the Boulder/RMNP area, some of these hikes are more "deep cuts" that even some people who live here haven't heard of. 

Other things I enjoyed about this book included the descriptions of the trails, highlights of the features for each trail, and ample images so you can get a better idea of what the trail is like and what views you might encounter. 

After reading this for free as a NetGalley ebook, I think I will get a paper copy for my shelf that I can use for reference.
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ARC copy provided by NetGalley

I love a good hiking guide with nice juicy pictures! Peter has multiple pictures per hike, and very descriptive tables with most things you'll want to know on the hikes. I loved how clear and simple the maps are and include even images of the highway icons and geological features!
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"Base Camp Denver: 101 Hikes In Colorado's Front Range" by Pete KJ is a detailed hiking guide with lots of pictures, a helpful "At a Glance" section on every hike, detailed maps, and even lengthy descriptions of all 101 Colorado front range hikes to explore.

There are some "classic" Colorado hikes and some other hikes off the beaten path. The author splits up the hikes both by region and by season at the beginning of the book. Don't forget to check out the index at the end of the book too, where he further breaks down the hikes into sections such as "Easy for children or adults with limited mobility," "Teen Favorites," "Interesting Geology, and many more breakdowns. The book covers hikes as far North as Fort Collins all the way down the Colorado Springs area. It is perfect for a hiker looking to get a Summer hike in before sunset after work, or on the weekend when time might be limited.

This book really covers so much of the front range that for most it will be the only hiking guidebook you would need if you are visiting Colorado on vacation or if you are a local looking for a great guide for what may be a short drive for you along the front range. I definitely recommend this book.

I received this eBook free of charge from Imbrifex Books via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. I did not receive any fiscal compensation from either company for this review and the opinions expressed herein are entirely my own.
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OMG did this fine guide to hiking in God’s country bring back memories of living a Mile High! I remember when my ex and I used to follow the Hike of the Week recommendations in the Denver Post, and one perfect summer afternoon ended up by an aquamarine alpine pool near Grays Peak. Talk about living in the moment! 

Well, just follow any of the 101 glorious treks described in BASE CAMP DENVER for an equal taste of heaven — from a walk for an hour or a day through mountain wildflowers, by waterfalls, in forests aglow with golden Aspen leaves — then be home by supper in my fave city in the world. Ecstasy! 5/5 

Pub Date 12 Apr 2019

Thanks to the author, Imbrifex Books and NetGalley for the review copy. Opinions are mine. 

#BaseCampDenver #NetGalley
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Excellent Front Range Guide

Being based in Denver and having lived in Fruita, (outside of Grand Junction), I have a decent sense of what hikes are available out there. Guides that are centered on Denver often cheat by filling themselves out with hikes/walks on the almost infinite variety of community trails and paths maintained by Denver and surrounding cities. That's fine, but you can only walk along irrigation canal trails and the cycle paths along the dry washes for so long before you begin to wonder what the big deal is about "hiking" in Colorado.

This book is different. It is focused on the Front Range, and almost every hike takes you into the Mountains. In order to do that the author has to cheat a little. Some of these hikes, (say the ones near Wyoming and/or along the Cache le Poudre), are not, practically speaking, quick hops from Denver. Ditto for the southernmost hikes. Those are rewarding hikes, but I'd call them "Base Camp Fort Collins" or "Base Camp Colorado Springs" hikes.

But that's a cheap quibble, because they are all great hikes, (and doable in a day if you leave Denver early enough and beat the traffic). Well selected, well described, and supremely rewarding. And even if you were to find yourself based only in Denver and are a lazy riser, this book still offers a fine selection of hikes that are very convenient to Denver proper. A few are gentle walkabouts around Boulder, but even Boulder offers easy and convenient access to more demanding hikes that lead directly into some of the best that the Front Range has. And there are lots of other equally good Mountain access points just west and southwest of Denver, (some not especially well known or heavily used), that the author is happy to direct you to. Beyond a doubt there is enough here to keep any hiker, or family of hikers, occupied and happy for days, if not weeks.

The book follows the modern format of providing trailhead info, hike info, access directions, parking suggestions, and a star system to highlight such things as elevation gain, crowding, trail difficulty, and the like. Maps are simple and not at a topo level of detail. But a careful hiker would have a separate area topo map or app anyway. Each hike description includes a number of inspirational good quality photos, which is a nice touch. There is just enough colorful detail or historical background to add an extra dimension to each hike. There is also a handy directory at the end of the book that will point the reader to different categories of hikes, (kid-friendly, rigorous, and so on), to help in selecting hikes.

Part of the fun of a book like this is using it to daydream about where to hike or to lay the groundwork for a vacation. Browsing such a book is a lot more fun with an agreeable and personable author. That's a strong point here because Pete KJ's style is informative, congenial, and just the right level of chatty/informative. 

The upshot, for me, was that this seemed to be both an excellent guide for a newbie and a valuable reference for a local looking for something new and perhaps a bit out of the way. A good, solid addition to the family shelf. (Please note that I received a free advance will-self-destruct-in-x-days Adobe Digital copy of this book without a review requirement, or any influence regarding review content should I choose to post a review. Apart from that I have no connection at all to either the author or the publisher of this book.)
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