Today we started from the Paradise Park road’s Middle Mountain trailhead, intending to reach the top of Middle Mountain and search for a trail leading to Mosby Mountain. On top of Middle Mountain, the snow was gone and spring beauties were in bloom. We saw the usual large elk herd melting into the forest. Daisy smelled them but couldn't tell which way they'd went. She ran around sniffing the ground for awhile with little success. We also saw one doe in the woods. Up top, it was windy and chilly, even with the temperature probably in the fifties.
We found a trail going toward Mosby, but after following it for perhaps a mile, it petered out in a dense lodgepole forest that had suffered intense blowdown and was a mass of crisscrossed fallen logs. We tried two routes that appeared to be elk trails, but the logs made the going tough.
Giving up, we turned around and headed out of the forest back toward Middle Mountain. However, Steve took a look at his GPS and map, and realized we’d been within half a mile of a road on Mosby Mountain when we’d quit. So, back we went.
This time, we tried yet another elk trail. We led the horses over numerous logs, through the dense trees and blowdown. Finally, we did get through, ending up where Mosby Creek crosses the Mosby Mountain road, a place we recognized from a ride up that road last weekend.
That last trip, we’d encountered a lot of snow. All of that was gone now. The road had plenty of water pools on it, but was plenty passable, and not too slippery. We continued down that road to our trailer without incident. The total ride was seven miles, 1200 feet elevation, done in about 3 hours.
Moral: Persistence pays dividends.