Hike of a life (so far) – Part II

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Photo opportunity!  So far the weather is holding out enough for us to enjoy this beautiful hike in Rocky Mountain National Park at the Bear Lake Trailhead.  If you’re just seeing this for the first time, and have not read Part I, please visit here to catch up!

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My son down by a stream.

My son down by the river.

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A photographer enjoying the view.  I'd seen her from below, not realizing that the trail was a U shape and that it led right up to her.

A photographer enjoying the view. I’d seen her from below, not realizing that the trail was a U shape and that it led right up to her.

My son and my other sons girlfriend were so sweet.  They waited up for me while the rest of the group went ahead.  Yes, I was stopping to take pictures, but because of my health, I needed to slow it down a bit and even rest for a while.

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Dream Lake

Dream Lake

I yelled down to these guys, “Is it ok if I take your picture?”:

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At this point, I caught up with my niece, brother, and sister-in-law.  I saw my niece first and she was heading back.  She said that we were all done and leaving.  I said, “No way!  I am finishing this hike!”  The end was just through this next path.  It led to Emerald Lake:

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How BEAUTIFUL is this???!!!

How BEAUTIFUL is this???!!!

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The wildlife was all over the place!  We saw tons of chipmunks and Golden-Mantled Ground Squirrels.  One of the Golden-Mantled’s walked on my sister-in-law’s leg.  I saw this Clark’s Nutcracker in a tree near me:

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On the way back to the trailhead, we stopped when we saw more Golden-Mantled Ground Squirrels.  One climbed onto the girlfriends back!  They are not afraid of people for sure!  This one is next to my sons arm:

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To get home, we  drove through Roosevelt National Forest.  All of a sudden we were at a dead stop.  Talk about being antsy, worried about having to go to the bathroom and no where to go, and all sorts of jokes popped up as to the reason!  It turned out to be a rock slide.  I got bored during the 1 1/2 hours that we were stuck, so I pulled out my long lens:

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At one point, I got out with my camera instructing my brother to hop into the drivers seat if the traffic started moving.  I stopped at that RV asking (laughing), if I could use the “facilities” if needed.  I also stopped at the white pick-up truck (two vehicles ahead of us)  which belongs to the forest service.  The two guys inside told me that they didn’t even have a radio, so they were as clueless as us!

Here are a few “outtakes”:

My son and I.

My son and I.

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Taken at 2:30pm

With the rock slide, we were a tad off our promised time back.  Seeing the time of capture on the above photo, and we were stuck for at least 1 1/2 hours, we weren’t going to make it.  We got my niece back around 4:30pm, which we found out she was giving herself time to shower and didn’t need to leave until 5pm, so we were good with her.  We got home around 5pm, so my son had just enough time to change for work.  Can’t predict rock slides!

The trip was a blast!  I enjoy spending time with the family in large groups.  We hadn’t taken an outing like this since we lived in Florida and we used to go camping and canoeing.

Speaking of Florida, I’m actually heading back in a few weeks for a visit!  Canoeing, tubing, and catching up with family and friends is on the menu!

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