Thursday, September 8, 2016

Grand Lake, Colorado

Roger here...  The aspen trees have turned to bright yellow just outside of Rocky Mountain National Park where we stayed for seven nights.


We stayed at the Elk Creek Campground and RV Park, less than a mile from the entrance to the national park.  This full-hookup site was one of the best we have encountered during our years of motorhome travel.

Our dogs don't mind butt pics...
Our outdoor living area was huge --- plenty of space for our fur kids to explore while on their tethers.  Plenty of space for us to read and relax.

This is the view from our doorway.  The campground owners told us that moose frequently wander through the meadow and even onto our campsite.  

Wildlife camera strapped to tree "just in case."
We hoped to see moose while we were here.  They frequent our campsite!  We spent quite a bit of relaxation time sitting in these chairs scouring the meadow (photo below) for moose.


During the first day of our time in the Colorado Rockies we stopped by the National Park Visitor Center and the Grand Lake Visitor Center to pick up ideas.  We also checked out the town.  

Grand Lake is a resorty-type town in a beautiful setting.  It is filled with shops, restaurants, and coffee shops.  We both required a mocha before walking around the town.

 The architecture of the town, including wood plank sidewalks, added to the resort atmosphere.    This photo shows a park across from the lake.  Hmm... Those clouds look a bit ominous.

It was Labor Day Weekend.  The lakefront was full of all sorts of water recreation.  We had talked about renting kayaks during our stay, but we discovered that many of the town's attractions (including kayak rental) would close down after the long weekend.

OK, I saw rain in those dark clouds.  I heard thunder.  We high-tailed it back to the car just as the deluge began.  It rained for the remainder of the day and all of the next day.


After two days inside, our dogs were restless.  We needed to exercise them on one of the dog-friendly trails outside the national park boundaries.  

The River Trail, built and maintained by the Grand Lake community, was exactly what we all needed.  This well-groomed trail was only a mile from our campground, and it was extremely well marked (if you watched for the signs).

Bandido and Tequila were ecstatic to be hiking after several quiet days.  So were Dianne and I.  The trail included several strategically located benches.  We stopped at the one in the photo below, just to take in the serenity, and to look for moose.

I like this photo because it makes me look thinner than I actually am -- D.
Here is a great picture of my two traveling girls.  

Bandido and I found a boulder to climb on.

Note the decorative wood-carved bench in the foreground

You probably figured out from my earlier comment that we did get lost.  As we were walking by the town golf course and watching a foursome tee off, we walked right by one of the directional signs.  We ended up on a series of manicured cross-country ski trails that did eventually take us back to our hike.  Dianne kept saying, "Did we get off the trail?  I don't think this is right."  Always listen to Dianne.

We knew we were back on track when we stumbled upon this bridge over the Colorado River.  Yes, a bridge spanning the Colorado River near its source --- in Colorado.

This is a view of the Colorado River from the bridge.  It looks so small!

Could it be?  The first of the iconic Colorado River rapids!

Bandido enjoyed wading in the crystal clear water of the river.  Always the cautious dog, he did not want to venture into waters over his head.  Unless, of course, he was chasing a tennis ball.  

Tequila also enjoyed some water time.  I remember a time when she refused to get her paws wet.

We walked a total of 5.5 miles on the hike (including the distance from when we were lost).  

The next post will cover our adventures in Rocky Mountain National Park.


This picture depicts me and the pups enjoying some sitting time by one of the marshes along the trail.  No signs of any moose....

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