Monthly Archives: August 2017

No Quick Trips to the Market

Well before Longs Peak was named by explorers Native Americans were using the visible peaks we call Meeker and Longs as guides to their hunting grounds. As long ago as 3850 B.C. Ute and Arapaho tribes camped in the tundra to hunt large animals such as deer, elk, and bears. Before Spanish explorers brought horses to Northern Colorado, these ingenious people used hunting walls and hunting blinds to corral their prey.

 

Today you can find evidence of these in Rocky Mountain National Park. Driving over Trail Ridge Road there is a place where Hidden Valley Ski Area was established in 1934. You will not find a trail, sign, or parking area therefore you will need guidance from the experts at Alpine Visitors’ Center. Once you park in a pullout, you can hike above treeline. Gaze at the landscape until you discover two rugged lines of rocks which had been walls. These walls gradually narrowed to a point where hunters would wait in a round blind. Women and children might have scared the game into the entrance between the walls and ran them uphill toward the blind. Spears, bows and arrows, and hatchets were used to kill the animals.

 

The circle of rocks, or blind, you see here may have been altered since prehistoric times, but the “walls” are authentic. If you see or hear any signs of a storm while hiking, head downhill immediately.