2019 Summer and Fall Retreats
Tell Cancer to Take a Hike!
This summer, Live By Living is currently offering 12 cancer survivor/caregiver retreats! Please read about each of the retreats below, decide which one (or two) you want to go on, and then click the registration button and sign up for that retreat. You must register separately for each retreat. If you want to bring a spouse or friend, you must each register separately.
All retreats are free for participants and volunteers. We do ask that people "pay it forward" at some point. There are different ways to pay it forward. Volunteering is a great way. We're always looking for hike and walk leaders so we can offer more activities for more people in more places! Another way is by clicking on the "pay it forward button" above and making a donation, if you're in a position to do that. $25 pays for one person's food on a retreat. $300 sponsors entire retreat for one person. And one easy way to pay it forward is to spread the word about these fabulous retreats to other survivors and caregivers, your medical providers, and just about anyone else.
This year, we’re offering a retreat specifically for young adult survivors. That retreat will be at Uncle Bud’s Cabin, September 14-16. We are also offering a retreat for Latino families on September 6-8 at the YMCA Estes Park. And, we are partnering with UCHealth to offer a retreat at Uncle Bud’s Cabin on August 17-19. Survivors who have been treated at UCHealth get preference in registering for this retreat.
If you've never been on a retreat, please read the "Survivor Retreat" page for important information. For example: the Tenth Mountain Huts do not have electricity or running water!
Sign up for ONE or TWO trips now. (You may only sign up for ONE of the YMCA Estes Park retreats.) Later, we’ll open up unlimited registration, and you can sign up for additional trips at that time, space allowing. We reserve the right to give preference to people who have never been on a retreat.
We will send you an automated email acknowledging receipt of your registration form. (If you do not receive one, your registration either did not go through, or your email address was incorrect. If there is still space on the trip when we receive your registration form, we will send you TWO medical clearance forms. One of these is for your doctor to sign. The other is for you to complete. BOTH forms must be completed and returned to us before you may go on the retreat.
We keep a wait list for each trip. If you are on the wait list, DON'T GIVE UP! Keep the retreat dates open, if you can. Past experience has shown that people pretty far down on the wait list often get to go on the trips.
Tenth Mountain Division Hut Survivor-Caregiver Retreat, July 20-22
The Tenth Mountain Hut is named in honor of the US Army’s mountaineering corps that trained in the surrounding mountains during World War II. The TMD hut sleeps 16 – 6 in one bedroom, 4 in another, and 6 in a communal area. You can read more about this cabin here. It has great views of Homestake Peak, and great hiking to Slide Lake, or up the ridge to Homestake Peak.
The trip in to the Tenth Mountain Hut is easier than the hikes to Peter Estin or to Uncle Bud’s, and a bit harder than the hike to Francie’s. The trail is about 3.25 miles long, with about 1000 feet of elevation gain. We’ll meet around 9 on Saturday, hike in, spend 2 nights, and hike out Monday morning.
Survivor-Caregiver Retreat, July 27-29
Francie’s is the easiest of the cabins we will go to this year. Francie's Cabin is located just south of Breckenridge, below treeline in the Crystal Lakes Valley. The hike in is about 3.75 miles long, and gains about 900 feet. We take our time, though, so this trip is suitable for most folks. Francie's Cabin is located at 11,264 feet.
Francie's Cabin is owned and managed by the Summit Huts Association. It has 6 bedrooms, and sleeps 20 people total. This cabin has indoor composting toilets and a SAUNA. You can read more about Francie’s Cabin here.
There are options for great day hikes, including an easy one just up the valley to an old ruined cabin that sits below Father Dyer Peak.It takes about one hour and 45 minutes to drive to the Francie’s trailhead from central Denver.
We will hike in on Saturday, spend 2 nights at the cabin, and hike out on Monday morning.
Peter Estin Hut Survivor/Caregiver Retreat, August 3-5
The Ironedge Trail that leads to the Peter Estin Hut is about a 3-mile hike, with 1800 feet of elevation gain. It's not the longest hike in, but it's the most sustained steep climb of any of the huts we go to. The hut sits at 11,200 feet above sea level. This cabin sleeps 16 -- 8 in a communal area, 2 each in separate bedrooms upstairs, and 4 in a secluded garden-level room. You can read more about the Peter Estin Hut here. The trailhead for the Peter Estin Hut is about a 3 hour and 15-minute drive from central Denver.
The wildflowers around the Peter Estin Hut are fabulous. There's a great hike from the hut to Charles Peak that overlooks the Holy Cross wilderness, including Gold Dust Peak and New York Mountain. You really feel like you're on top of the world!
We will hike in on Saturday, spend 2 nights at the cabin, and hike out on Monday.
Uncle Bud's Hut Survivor/Caregiver retreat, August 17-19 UCHealth retreat
Uncle Bud's Hut is a perennial favorite. At 4 miles, the hike to Uncle Bud's is the longest of this year's retreats. The trail climbs about 1,300 feet, so it's not as steep as the trail to the Peter Estin Hut.
Uncle Bud's is a very comfortable place to rest and relax. It’s just like the Tenth Mountain Division Hut on the inside, and sleeps 16 people in two bedrooms (one has 4 beds, another has 6) and a communal area with one double bed and 4 single beds. It sits at 11,370 feet. You can read more about Uncle Bud’s Hut here. It takes about 2 hours to get to our meeting point in Leadville from central Denver.
With the panorama of Mount Massive right out the front windows of the hut and Galena Peak behind, Uncle Bud's offers "intrepid trailblazers" truly rewarding vistas. There are great day hike options from Uncle Bud's hut, whether you just want a moderate hike to Bear Lake, or a more challenging climb up the ridge toward Galena Mountain.
Persons who received treatment at one of the UCHealth system hospitals get preference in registering for this retreat. Thanks to UCHealth for sponsoring this trip! On the August trip, we may be able to find the king of wild mushrooms, boletus edulus. Mushrooms are a great cancer-fighting food, and a perfect foil for eating melted butter and garlic! We will hike in on Saturday morning, spend 2 nights at the hut, and hike out on Monday morning
Fowler-Hilliard Hut, August 24-26 (young adult retreat)
The Fowler-Hilliard Hut may have the most spectacular setting of any of the Tenth Mountain huts. Nestled on a saddle above Resolution Bowl, the cabin has great views of Resolution Peak and the Sawatch Range. Out the back of the cabin sits the Gore Range, perhaps the most rugged of all Colorado mountain ranges. The sleeping layout is 1 room with a double bed, 1 room with 4 single beds, and 10 single beds in a communal sleeping area. The Fowler-Hilliard hut is the highest of the huts we use, right at 11,500 feet (gasp!).
From the cabin, it’s a short hike to the summit of Resolution Mountain, with 360-degree views of many mountain ranges. The trail to the Fowler-Hilliard hut follows a 4WD road. We’ll hike in about 2 miles on the road, gaining a little under a thousand feet of elevation. We go in Saturday, spend 2 nights at the hut, and leave Monday morning.
This retreat is for young adult (under 40-ish) survivors and their caregivers.
YMCA Estes Park/Rocky Mountain National Park September 6-8 (for Latino families)
The YMCA conference center in Estes Park is the "civilized" approach to a Live By Living retreat. We stay in a modern 6-bedroom cabin, supplemented with lodge rooms as needed to permit double occupancy. Electricity! Indoor plumbing! Showers! And, for the volunteers – two dishwashers! Drive right to your door, unpack, and get ready for an amazing retreat.
We carpool into Rocky Mountain National Park for 2 days of incredible hiking as the aspen are beginning their annual fall display. Each day, there will be a choice of an easy hike of about a mile, or a more challenging hike of up to about 5 miles. This is also prime season for watching and listening to the mating ritual of the elk – "bugling," as it’s called. PLEASE NOTE: This trip starts on a Friday, and ends on a Sunday.
This trip is intended for Latino families. We will have culturally-appropriate foods and a bilingual volunteer crew. Our thanks go out to the Colorado Cancer Coalition for supporting our efforts to reach out to underserved communities in Colorado.
Francie’s Cabin, September 7-9
See the Francie’s posting above for a description of the hut and the hike. We'll hike in on Saturday, spend 2 nights at the cabin, and hike out on Monday.
Uncle Bud’s Cabin September 14-16
See Uncle Bud’s posting above for a description of the hut and the hike. We'll hike in on Saturday, spend 2 nights at the cabin, and hike out on Monday.
YMCA Estes Park/Rocky Mountain National Park September 23-25 (MONDAY-WEDNESDAY)
YMCA Estes Park/Rocky Mountain National Park September 30 – October 2 (MONDAY-WEDNESDAY)
We return to the YMCA Estes twice more this year. These trips will be at the peak of the fall colors and in the midst of elk mating season. PLEASE NOTE, these last two trips start on Monday morning and end on Wednesday morning.
Southwest Colorado Retreat, Oct. 25-27 (Fri-Sun)
Our second Southwest Colorado retreat moves a little west and a little upscale as we shift to the BlueLake Lodge near Durango. We'll spend a couple nights at this peaceful resort, and enjoy a couple days of hiking in the nearby mountains. This retreat is for residents of SW Colorado and the 4 corners area.