Estes Cone and the Iron Dike, 10/29/2005

Our purpose in this hike was to locate the Iron Dike in the vicinity of Estes Cone. The map in Wahlstrom's paper (Bulletin of the Geological Sociey of America, Vol 67, Feb 1956, p147-163) showed it going by very near to the summit of Estes Cone.

Stefan estimated that the Iron Dike would be in the vicinity of point 2 (see point list below). We started hiking from the Lilly Lake Trailhead on the Storm Pass Trail at 9:59. When we got to point 2 we were dissapointed that it wasn't there and having observed the rocks along the trail from Lilly Lake we knew that we had not crossed it. But we anticipated that continuing along the trail, we would soon meet up with it.

Continuing further along the Storm Pass Trail, far beyond point 2 we finally met up with it when the telltale rocks appeared along the trail (see "Eastern edge of Iron Dike on Storm Pass Trail" below for coordinates). We continued seeing the Iron Dike rocks along the trail for quite a distance until they disappeared near Storm Pass (see "Western edge of Iron Dike on Storm Pass Trail" below for coordinates).

At that point we decided to ascend to the summit of Estes Cone a little east of this western edge to see if the dike continued to the summit. The Iron Dike rocks soon disappeared as we ascended, and we saw no more of them up to the summit. We reached the summit of Estes Cone at 12:05.

Descending from the summit we went in a southwesterly direction, hoping to find the dike again but did not find it by the time we met up with the Storm Pass Trail again. Stefan suggests that the dike may pass to the west of the Estes Cone summit, meaning that the width of the dike that we measured along the Storm Pass Trail was not the actual width since we did not travel perpendicular to it. This would explain the extreme width that we measured, and also the fact that we did not find it in our southwesterly descent from the summit of Estes Cone. We returned to the Lilly Lake parking area at 14:50.

GPS data
Place nameElev [ft]Accuracy [ft]Lat/Lon
Lilly Lake Trailhead89751740.30612/105.53815
Eastern edge of Iron Dike
on Storm Pass Trail
Western edge of Iron Dike
on Storm Pass Trail
Estes Cone summit110351540.29528/105.56667

Point List
1Longs Peak campground ridge40.2757/105.5581
2Park Boundary corner near Estes Cone40.2931/105.5620
3Estes Cone summit40.2952/105.5674
4Benchmark 9452 near campground40.2753/105.5614
5Park Boundary corner near Lilly Lake40.3004/105.5531
6Knob of Estes Cone40.3043/105.5711

Topomap of the Estes Cone Area