11 hours ago
Sunday, August 8, 2010
Rocky Mountain National Park
If only this old backpack and hiking stick could tell a few stories from their perspective...
I was reading aloud to K from a book called Funny Trail Tales. In one excerpt by Howard Tomb, author of FINE POINTS OF EXPEDITION BEHAVIOR in The Cool of the Wild, we found something that each of us can work on. K is guilty of breaking Expedition Behavior Rule No. 1: GET THE HE** OUT OF BED. He's just not a morning person. He loves to sleep in. J is guilty of breaking Expedition Behavior Rule No. 2: DO NOT BE CHEERFUL BEFORE BREAKFAST. As aptly described in the book, J is thus, "Some people wake up as happy and perky as fluffy bunny rabbits. They put stress on those who wake up as mean as rabid wolverines." We hope we have many more years, summers, and weekends to keep improving our Expedition Behavior!
We hiked to Lulu City, population 200 back in the day from 1879-1884. We were in the Kawuneeche Valley and there were these bright red mushrooms all over the place. To me they are screaming, "I dare you to eat me...heh, heh, heh." However, a sign said the golden mantled ground squirrels consume them. Not much of this old ghost town/silver mine left...just a tree growing through the leftovers of someone's old cabin. Great 7.4 mile hike!
Marmot and Elk.
Hallet Peak from Emerald Lake, the third of the three lakes beyond Bear Lake. I love the name "Never Summer Mountains."
Alberta Falls...Alberta was the wife of Mr. Sprague. That's why they call it Sprague Lake. Everybody has to earn their livin' and it's kind of funny to watch ducks do that. I think the chipmunk was in some kind of transcendental hypnotic state because it sat that still while I snapped a couple of pics.
This is Lava Cliffs and Alpine Tundra above 12,000 feet on the Trail Ridge Road.
We drove the Old Fall River Road constructed between 1913 and 1920. We stopped at Chasm Falls and grabbed this picture of five big bull elk lounging around.
Lake Irene is a beautiful easy walk with friendly mule deer. "Federal Deer" aren't afraid of humans, it seems.
This is near (ten miles) the headwaters of the Colorado River in Coyote Valley. We had a nice afternoon walk here--sunny.
This was taken from our site at Timber Creek Campground on the west side. The east side campgrounds fill up quickly and it's a ZOO over there, so we did enjoy the "quiet" side of the park. All of the trees have been cut down due to the bark beetle infestation. Our changing campground neighbors included: a couple from Poland, a guy riding his bicycle from Seattle to Louisiana, an Asian couple from San Francisco with a souped up van to sleep in, an older fellow with a little Jack Russell terrier who made loud, constant, bear-like snoring noises in his sleep (the human, not the dog--K and I laughed about these noises for two nights!), and a man with two older daughters who needed high-volume banjo music to feel comfortable at all hours. It rained off and on every single day, but we still had no trouble hiking, cooking, and sleeping.
K and I had ourselves another great trip! We had been to Rocky Mountain National Park once for snowshoeing in winter, but this was J's first time to visit in the summer. We highly recommend the park any time of year, but dress warmly no matter the time of year because they call them the NEVER SUMMER MOUNTAINS for a reason!