Final Days at Rocky Mountain National Park

A starry night looking over Long’s Peak

These last few days at Rocky Mountain National Park have been just as magical as the rest. After completing the Chasm Lake trail on tuesday, Melissa, Jed and I have been driving and hiking around the park, making sure we visited everywhere we wanted to.

On Wednesday we did a 4 lake hike, starting with Bear lake, then up to Nymph, Dream and Emerald. It was about a 3.5 mile hike round trip, which Jed did a mile of by himself (the rest we had a kid carrier for). Each lake was a little different and each had pretty spectacular views. That night I gave my second artist talk a the Beaver Meadows visitor center auditorium. 68 people came and I had a lot of fun talking about my work, what I’ve been doing in the park, and giving a demo of large format photography.

Dream Lake looking towards Hallett and Flattop

Emerald Lake looking up to Hallett

Thursday we all drove through various stops in Horseshoe Park (where the park was originally opened in 1915) and then up Trail Ridge Road again to the Tundra Communities trail, which I hiked while Jed and Melissa napped in the car. That trail gave some spectacular views and gave access to some unique ecology and rock formations on the tundra. The wind was whipping however, with a sustained “breeze” of about 25 mph with gusts of 40 at least. It was pretty similar to being up at chasm lake again except that the sun was shining, so it felt quite a bit warmer.

In Horseshoe Park at the edge of the Alluvial Fan area.

Mushroom stones on the Tundra Communities Trail
Near the top of the Tundra Communities Trail

And today, our last full day in the park, we wanted to get out and see something new, so we drove down to the southern end of the park to Wild Basin and did a short hike to the picturesque Copeland Falls. Jed did a little fishing, we had a snack and I took some photos. It was a great little day trip and a fitting finale to our adventure. And now, the drive back home.

Aspen Leaves

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