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Almost 20 Years of Tenth Mountain Division Hut Trips

Tue, 2022-08-23

The August 23 Mountaineers meeting will be in-person, with a hybrid adjunct. The presentation will feature Kathleen Gruetzmacher’s many outings to the 10th Mountain Division backcountry huts. Kathleen writes: “I believe my first trip to the Tenth Mountain Division Hut Association huts in Colorado was a winter trip to the Skinner Hut in 2003.  At that time, Dick Opsahl was organizing an annual Mountaineers trip to the Tenth Mountain Huts each year for 16 hardy souls.  Since then, I’ve gone on a Tenth Mountain Hut Association trip almost every year, enjoying both winter and summer trips.  Eight Mountaineers just finished a July hiking trip to Uncle Bud’s Hut, located just a few miles east of the Continental Divide at 11,380' in the Rocky Mountains of central Colorado, near Leadville.  I’ll be showing photos of that trip and many others, recounting adventures and (mis)adventures along the way.”

The Tenth Mountain Hut Association was formed in the early 1980’s by several Aspen area backcountry skiers with the intent to provide cross country ski trails with hut accommodations spaced within a day’s skiing.  The hut association is named in honor of the solders of the 10thMountain Division of the U.S. Army, who trained at Camp Hale near Leadville for winter fighting in WWII.  Remnants of Camp Hale, mainly foundations and roads, still remain; it has been designated a National Historic Site.  Many of the huts, like Uncle Bud’s, were named after veterans of the Tenth Mountain Division.

Kathleen is a native of Wisconsin who came to Los Alamos as a summer student in the mid-1980’s and joined the Mountaineers shortly after arriving.  She has enjoyed a multitude of adventures with the Club since then, including backpacking, hiking, biking, cross country skiing and snowshoeing, climbing, and houseboat trips on Lake Powell.  She especially appreciates the many amazing and unique friends she has met along the way.  Trips to the Tenth Mountain Huts are among her favorites.

We welcome all to this Mountaineers’ meeting. Club meetings are held on the fourth Tuesday of every month, with a social hour at 6:45 PM and program at 7:00 PM. The presentation will be in-person at Los Alamos Nature Center; the slides will be live-streamed on Zoom. Registration is required; registration for both in-person or virtual attendance will be via PEEC, at

Patti Walls on the way to Sisters Cabin near Breckenridge, March 2022.

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