A bittersweet farewell…

I am interrupting my three-part series about our long weekend adventure to Utah to bring you a near-real-time update. I will pick up later and finish all the posts about the fun we had this summer…soon! We left Estes Park, Colorado, and Rocky Mountain National Park on Monday, and suffice it to say, we are sad about that! But this last week and the whole summer has been magical. I will try to share the feeling here.

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300+ Miles to Utah, no problem! Part 1: Flaming Gorge

Since we have been in Estes Park, I have been obsessed with seeing a few sights/National Monuments in far eastern Utah, and far western Colorado. In the spring of last year, we spent two months exploring National Parks and Monuments (and other scenic stuff, of course) in Southern Utah and Colorado. But we did not make it north of I-70, so we missed a National Recreation Area and National Monument in Utah, and another National Monument in Grand Junction, Colorado. So, with three days off coming up, we planned a grand adventure motorcycle ride of 900 or so miles, in three days!

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Guanella Pass Scenic Byway

Waaay back in the middle of August (how can it be the middle of September already?), Jerry and I were itching for a motorcycle ride. There was an ulterior motive for my dear husband, which will reveal itself later in the blog, but generally, we just wanted to get out there, see some beauty, while running up some miles. Since we are fortunate enough to still be here in Northern Colorado, we had endless options for spectacular scenery.

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Rocky Mountain NP: Sky Pond

Yes, folks, another post aboutΒ Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP), one of the most spectacular parks in our very spectacular National Park System. This time I have a story about a hike that started out mild and ended up wild! As usual, this hike took place a couple of weeks ago, on August 9th. We thought some of the summer crowds might be dissipated due to school starting in some areas of the country, so we headed off to the most popular trailhead in the park, Bear Lake, where you can access no less than 10 magnificent hikes. Warning: This is a long post with tons of pics. πŸ™‚

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Rocky Mountain NP: Deer Mountain

As I have said several times about Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP), despite being here in Colorado for THREE months (!), we never tire of the park and all its many incredible features! Today I will tell you about a lovely summit hike (just over 10,000′) that is only 6.9 miles from our campsite, Deer Mountain. I am still trying to catch up the blog; this hike was completed on July 31st.

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Around Estes: Lily Lake & Moose Mania

Just about 4 miles up the road from our campground is the beautiful Lily Lake, just on the edge of Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP). We have been there a number of times during our time in Estes Park, to hike the lake loop, the Lily Ridge Trail, or have a picnic lunch, but I have not written about it since this post early in our stay. Recently, we had heard about several bull moose sightings at Lily Lake, and a bull moose was still on our must-see wildlife list. πŸ™‚Β On a recent evening, we took our camp chairs and went on a moose hunt.

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Around Estes: Twin Sisters

As I type this post, in early August, we are beginning to notice hints of fall in the Rockies, although the crowds in Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) still scream of summer! πŸ˜‰ Today I will describe a hike on July 24th, a Tuesday, where we got an early start which allowed a peaceful and uncrowded hike up to Twin Sisters Peak, but then we encountered the masses going up as we headed down in the early afternoon. Yes, it was a long hike!

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