The Squealing Tire

Tire Talk from the Experts at Discount Tire Company.

The Squealing Tire - Tire Talk from the Experts at Discount Tire Company.

Discount Tire Goes to Ouray – FJ Summit 2011 (Part 3)


Another beautiful crisp morning.  We’ve had the best weather imaginable.  There has been no rain and most of the time there’s been big puffy clouds in the bright blue sky.

We were up early again to meet everyone taking the trail we sponsored today called Alpine loop. This is one of the longer trails at  about 65 miles.  It seemed everyone at the event was up early and eager for another adventurous day on the old mining roads in the San Juan Mountains.

The FJ Summit trail guides went through the same preporations as they checked off each driver on their list to make sure everyone made it back safely to the staging area.

This trail starts just south of town off US~550. It doesn’t take very long before we’re already seeing snow and waterfalls.

We had a lone Jeep come up from behind our group so the tail gunner radioed our leader to let him know.  That was one of the neat things as almost everybody had CB radios so it was easy for the leader to let everyone know to pull over to let someone by.  Since we pulled over it was time for a short break.

As we hit the trail again we are once again reminded of how lucky we are to be 4 wheeling in such gorgeous country.

As we start the climb up to Engineers Pass the views just keep getting better and better.  Off in the distance there are remnants of an old mining operation.

When we are close to the top I just caught this Marmot begging for food along the side of the road.  I think he was disappointed we  did not give him any.

We made it to the pass which is 12,800 feet in elevation and beautiful!  The tundra in this picture reminds me of a golf course with a lot of sand traps.

I just had to “ham it up” a bit next to the sign.

Here is the sign that was next to me explaining some of the history of this land.

As we head over to Lake City to have lunch we pass a very cool house that is actually for sale.  Our guide came on the radio and said you could buy it for a cool 4.1 million dollars. Maybe we will have to take up a collection?  Look at the swinging bridge that you have to walk over to get to the house.  How would you like to carry the furniture over that?

It seems every corner we go around we see more incredible waterfalls and vistas.

We stopped in the town of Lake City for lunch which turned out to be somewhat of a mistake.  Most of the group went to a restaurant but they were so overwhelmed by the groups that were ahead of us it was a long wait for food.  We hung out at the park in the middle of town eating a packed lunch we prepared the night before.

As we were talking with some of our group a dragonfly decided to take a break with our tail gunner (I believe her name was Dorian?).  How cool is this, she must have a knack with insects.  It stayed on her for about 15 minutes.

Now we are headed over Cinnamon Pass which again is over 12,000 feet.  The sign says 12,640 feet in elevation and we are certainly well over the tree line.

This time we actually lined up for a group photo at the top of the pass.

Here is a photo of our awesome trail guide and his lovely wife.

As we come down the mountain there are a couple of old mining areas before going through the town of Eureka.

The road then comes out at the town of Silverton.  From here you take the very narrow and curvey US~555 back to Ouray.  I had been driving Cary’s FJ since Lake City over Cinnamon Pass.  I was more nervous driving his rig on this part of the road than I was with my dually.  Maybe it was because it was not my vehicle.

After we got back and cleaned up we walked over to the Best Western for dinner.  They did an awesome job feeding all the hungry people.

Here is the link with additional photos and our GPS tracks from the trails we ran today.

Alpine Loop Ouray Co. 07-21-11 – trip | EveryTrail

We hope you enjoyed day 3 as much as we did. What a Great Country. Have fun on the trails and stay safe.


Don McNeilly
Discount Tire Co.

Category: Events, FJ Summit