Saturday, August 6, 2011

Western Vacation Recap:: Day Six

Our last full day in Colorado was truly spectacular.  We had been itching to really get up into the mountains, so we headed to Rocky Mountain National Park.  Our first stop was to hike around Bear Lake.  The 3 mile trail around the lake was so beautiful, and it was not too difficult for the little ones to keep up.  The lake was clear and calm, like glass, and was surrounded by the gorgeous Rocky Mountains.  We spotted chipmunks, birds, fish, and a mother duck with seven babies!  The weather was gorgeous-- even chilly in the shady spots, and the air felt crisp and clean. 

After our hike, we found a picnic area to eat the lunch we had packed earlier that morning.  And we followed that up with an incredibly scenic drive up to the Alpine Visitors Center.  We slowly drove up mountain roads that curved and twisted and turned.  The views out our van windows got more spectacular with each turn and soon we were over 11,000 feet above sea level!  We stopped at the visitor's center which felt like being at the top of the world.  The temperature was 50 degrees and the kids went to play in the snow.  I was really glad I had packed a jacket!  The kids returned pink-cheeked and cold, so we sat and enjoyed a cup of hot chocolate.  What a drastic change from the 100 plus temperatures we had been having back in Oklahoma!  I think our day at Rocky Mountain National Park was my favorite day in Colorado.  I much prefer the grandness of nature to the shiny tourist-trappings of theme parks. 

So photos just don't do it justice.

Me and a sleepy Lucas.  We had to wake him up from a nap to go inside the visitor's center.  Poor  little guy.
Me, Lucas, Hannah and Papa
Once again, I was so glad I had packed jackets!

After a full day outside spent hiking, walking and admiring the Rockies, we went home to do a few loads of laundry and repack our gear so we could hit the road and head to South Dakota the next day.  Get ready for more adventure on the open road!

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