Saturday, June 1, 2013

RMNP Day 3


Friday 5/31/13

 
What can I say?  Another glorious day.  Although the howling wind was, once more, a factor. 
 

My hope today was to traverse Trail Ridge Road (at least the 11 miles that is open now) but the wind put that idea to rest.  Tomorrow’s forecast calls for normal wind speed so I hope to drive the storied road before I leave. 

I was also determined to see Bear Lake – situated high in the mountains.  Park officials have warned that, due to road construction, the shuttle ride to the lake could experience delays of up to 2 hours.  However, I had no choice once a fellow camper told me that the route contains about 5 miles of gravel road.  I just couldn’t do that to the GDB.  Good decision.


The GDB would not have like this tooth-rattler.
As it happened, our shuttle was delayed for perhaps 5 minutes to the top and even less on our way down.  The repeated warnings must have scared most people off. 




Up and up and up we went.  Then we were surrounded by snow. 
 
 
Bear Lake
 
I wanted to do an easy hike around the lake but I didn’t get far. 

Snow-covered trail maybe 3 feet deep
 
Yep, the snow on the trail was deep and I had not worn my hiking boots nor brought my hiking poles.  But that was OK because it was f-f-f-f-freezing up there. 

I’ve never seen an Alpine lake before.  At 9,450 feet both it and Hallett Peak, in the background, snuggle right up to the Continental Divide.  The lake is small but over 200 feet deep.  Notice the whitecaps!  

 

Now …. I’m fairly bold about some things but I am uneasy hiking alone.  Fortunately, this trail around the campground is sheltered yet feels safe and offers as much scenery as you could possibly want.  I just can’t believe I’m camped in such a beautiful spot.  Sure beats the Hampton Inn!


 

I’m becoming more aware of wildflowers.  Any tips on how to photograph them?

 
There is a species of rodent, whose name I’ve forgotten, that turns lichen bright orange with its urine. 

 

Tomorrow I leave this majestic place.  But much more good stuff is on the horizon, including more fossil beds and the gems that are Buena Vista and Salida, CO. 
 
 

7 comments:

  1. Good choice to not take the GDB on that road. Although I would not have liked the bus, either, since school busses and my knees don't like one another.

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  2. Thanks for more great pics! That lil Lichen color changing rodent could be quite the Picasso :)

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  3. Almost unimaginable beauty! Thank you! :)

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  4. Wow. Just wow. How beautiful is all that!

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  5. It's too bad there was so much snow on the trail around Bear Lake. I am cautious when hiking alone, sometimes after I start out, it doesn't feel right and I turn around - other times I just keep on going. Have to trust your instincts.

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    1. Teri - I do the same thing. Over and over again, I start out, then I get uneasy. Then I psych myself out. So it's no fun.

      I'm not certain whether it's that little voice that keeps you from harm or, now, just habit. It's very frustrating! I miss hiking.

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    2. Ya, I keep saying I need a hiking partner. If I am ever in the same place as you, we can hike together.

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