When Garett Reppenhagen returned from Iraq, the need to process the trauma of war led him into Colorado’s backcountry.

“My natural instinct was to get outdoors,” he said Friday. “The outdoors became this massive healing thing for me. Without it, I don’t think I would have survived.”

One of the special healing places Reppenhagen discovered was Camp Hale, the garrison built in a large meadow between Leadville and Minturn for the burgeoning 10th Mountain Division in the early 1940s. The high alpine beauty — it’s located below Tennessee Pass at an altitude of 9,200 feet — coupled with the rich military history makes it especially meaningful to veterans, he said.

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