MARS Associates

 Hiking Club

Point of Contact:

Sue Janssen at or 303-936-8339

Ours is a gathering of like-minded MARS members who enjoy hiking and desire to share the experience with others. We plan to conduct a sponsored hike each month, on the third Wednesday. Twice a year, in the Spring and the Fall, we will hold a planning meeting to address organizational issues and plan for the forthcoming season. Each hike event will be overseen by a member point of contact. We have no insurance, so members will be required to sign a waiver for each hike.

You must RSVP to the Point of Contact (POC) at least 2 days before the hike.  The POC will provide you with additional information. These hikes are generally rated as easy to intermediate.   Read the descriptions to evaluate your readiness to enjoy the outing. Please check this webpage at your convenience to be sure you have the latest information.

Wednesday, December 15

Come explore Red Rocks with us!  Tom and I are leading our December hike at Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Wednesday, December 15 at 9:30 am.  We will meet in front of the Trading Post, located at 17900 Trading Post Road, for a hike on the Trading Post Trail and the Geologic Overlook Trail. After the hike we plan to have lunch at The Morrison Inn at about 12:00 pm.  Bathrooms are open by 9:00 am on the East side of the Trading Post. I've attached a map of the Park.

You can choose to visit the Trading Post and Colorado Music Hall of Fame, open from 10 am - 4 pm, if you don't want to climb to the top of the Amphitheatre and/or hike the Geologic Overlook Trail.  The Visitor Center, open from 9 am - 4 pm, is located at the top of the Amphitheatre. Both inside venues require masks at this time.

About the Hike
The 1.4 mile Trading Post Trail should take less than an hour.  This hike is relatively flat but does have a lot of stone steps. After the first trail, we will climb to the top of the Amphitheatre and then hike out and back on the more challenging Geologic Overlook Trail from the Upper North Lot.  The total hike will be about 3.5 miles with the climb up and the return to our cars via the Funicular Trail (yes, there used to be a Funicular here!)  The hikes are of moderate difficulty on well maintained trails with lots of steps and about 900 feet of elevation gain.  A walking stick is a good idea for the steeper portions, especially on the Geologic Overlook Trail.

We will keep our eye on the weather, neither trail is a good idea in the snow.  Let us know if you are planning to attend.  Hope to see you there!

Sue Pawlowski

Friday, October 29, 2021

This is apt to be the last adventure/hike of this Summer/Fall season and will be a (hopefully) snowfree hike to Silver Dollar Lake
on Friday, October 29th. Gene Dionne is organizing this event with the help of Sue Janssen. We will likely have lunch at the
Happy Cooker in Georgetown following the hike.

The Trail

We will climb to the Silver Dollar Lake located most of the way to Guanella Pass, from Idaho Springs, CO. The turnoff and parking
lots (on both sides of the paved road) are well marked as is the dirt/gravel road to the actual trailhead but the road is often
quite rough and a 4WD vehicle (or at least a vehicle with high ground clearance) is advisable. We will meet at the trailhead at
10:00 AM. It might be advisable to bring microspikes, or something similar, just in case there is ice/snow.

All Trails Description

Silver Dollar Lake and Murray Lake Trail is a 4.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Silver
Plume, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used
from March until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length: 4.1 miles       Elevation Gain: 1,066 ft     Route type: Out and back

Special Guest

We will be joined by a longtime Nepali guide/friend (Ang Tshering Lama) who is visiting me for several days before returning
to Kathmandu. Ang is a very experienced climber/guide/SAR/WFR/etc. trained mostly in this country and teaches climbing and
SAR at the Khumbu Climbing Center in Phorche, Nepal. He recently has been guiding Everest expeditions and has
summited on all four of the attempts, once soloing the climb.

Please let me know if you can join us!

Gene Dionne

(M) 303-880-7499

Hikers must complete the Liability Waiver Form

Participants must wear appropriate footwear (no sandals please) and carry their own pack.
Remember the scouting motto – “Be prepared” – and carry the “10 Essentials.”
1.    Navigation (map and compass or GPS and know how to use them)
2.    Sun protection (sunglasses, sunscreen, hat, lip balm)
3.    Insulation (dress in layers –it can rain or snow any day in Colorado)
4.    Illumination (headlamp/flashlight)
5.    First-aid supplies (take good care of your feet)
6.    Fire (waterproof matches/lighter/candles)
7.    Repair kit and tools (pocket knife, duct tape, extra batteries, etc.)
8.    Nutrition (snacks and food)
9.    Hydration (water - lots of it)
10.    Emergency shelter (such as a space blanket)
You may also wish to add toilet paper, hand sanitizer, garbage bag, camera, whistle, extra socks, medication, pen and paper or sketchbook, insect repellant and a handkerchief.  But don’t make your pack too heavy!

If you don’t own snowshoes you can rent them at lots of places including REI, Sports Authority, and Christy Sports.  Poles are optional, but sometimes helpful.

We will be in the “backcountry” during the winter – be prepared for adverse weather and winter driving conditions.  Before heading out, check road conditions by calling “511” or  Check with CAIC at

COSAR CARD (Optional)

Purchase your Colorado Search and Rescue Card at Roxborough State Park Visitor Center (or other locations). The cost is $3.00 for one year and $12.00 for five years.

If you wish to join the MARS Hiking Club, please contact Sue Janssen at or 303-936-8339.  Provide your email address and phone number.

Last updated December 6, 2021, by Jim Kummer  <>