Greetings from Estes Park

(On the road to Estes Park, Colorado.*)

M and I left Boulder today.  We’re going to spend six days in the Rocky Mountain National Park area.  M has a bit of a problem with one of his feet that will keep him from hiking for a day or two (nothing serious) so that will curtail some of our activity for a little while.

(South Saint Vrain Creek.*)

On our way to Estes Park we stopped at the Ceran Saint Vrain trail near the South Saint Vrain Creek.  It wasn’t exactly on our way but someone recommended it as a good place for M to soak his foot in the cold, clear water of the creek while I hiked around a little.

(Along the Ceran Saint Vrain Trail.*)

The trail is named after Ceran Saint Vrain (1802-1870), a fur trader born in St. Louis County, Missouri, who came to the southern Rocky Mountain area in 1824.  St. Vrain and his business partner (Charles Bent) established several forts in Colorado, one of which was Fort St. Vrain built at the confluence of the South St. Vrain Creek and the South Platte River.  He went from fur trading to the military to politics, making him one of the leading pioneers of the early west.  (Information obtained from a sign near the trail head.)

(Another view of the South St. Vrain Creek.*)

I didn’t hike very far.  The idea of meeting a bear, a mountain lion, or a rattlesnake while out on my own just wasn’t terribly appealing.  I don’t make enough noise when hiking on my own to scare anything off.

(On the trail.*)

We stayed about a half hour or so and then moved on towards Estes Park.  The views along the way were breathtaking.  I’ve never seen anything like it other than in photos, on television, or in the movies.  I seriously doubt any of my photos do it justice but they give you some idea.

(Longs Peak, maybe?*)

Estes Park isn’t far from Boulder.  It’s about 30 miles (an hour drive).  We took our time, stopping at various scenic turnouts so I could snap a few pictures.  I think one of the worst views of Longs Peak is at the Longs Peak Scenic View point on CO-7.  There are too many tall trees in the way.  Not that I’m recommending cutting down the trees.  Go up a little ways and there are better views but nowhere to park.

(Big Thompson River from the bridge near the Visitors Center in Estes Park.*)

We stopped at the Visitors Center to pick up a map of Estes Park, a shuttle schedule (for when we can go hiking), and to get some information on dining in the area.  Then we checked in at our hotel and got our stuff unloaded.

(View from our hotel room balcony.*)

Although not a high end hotel, it is well located for us (outside of the main town) and we have beautiful views from our balcony.  From all appearances, Estes Park is a big tourist town and seemed pretty crowded when we drove through it.

(Another view from our balcony.*)

That’s about it for now.  We’re going to have dinner soon and then probably sit out on the balcony and watch the stars come out.

*All photos copyright 2009 by Robin.  All rights reserved.


Ducks in the canal

mab

(097:  Mother and child.  Photo © 2009 by Robin)