Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Vacation - Day 2 Rocky Mountain National Park

On Day 2 we came up from the southwest part of Rocky Mountain National Lake at Grand Lake..The Lake was huge.  Not such a great picture. My camera and I had a difficult time deciding on settings..

Stopped at a visitor center and grabbed a map and heard that a momma moose and baby had been hanging out along our route north and east.  She also said that we should check out Sheep Lake which is at the Estes park entrance and watch Big Horn Sheep come down and drink and graze in evenings. 

I bet we hadn't been in the car 10 minutes and we spotted the moose  along with about 100 other people, but we were still able to pull over and get some pics. 

Then a little on down the road...a small herd of elk. 
(which Owen wanted Brent to get his gun and shoot them.  Thinking the hunting channel might be off limits for a bit!)
There is only one road that goes up and all the through Rocky Mountain National Park to Estes Park (our next and final stop for the rest of vacation)  What an absolutely BEAUTIFUL DRIVE.....
We stopped and ate lunch at Bear Lake (I think?)  But the mosquitos wanted us more than our food.  I think we used 3 days worth of bug spray at lunch that day.  And no, we did NOT have subway..good 'ol pb & j, chips, grapes, gatorade, capri sun and water! 
After Lunch we hiked down to Bear Lake..

Continuing on across the ONE road..we stopped SEVERAL times for some scenic pics.  This is how the conversation went after about the 3rd stop.....
Brent and I " hey this looks really cool.  We want to read what this sign says and takes some pics.Ok?
Brent and I "  Ok?  Sound good?"
Nothing Silence..Quick look in mirror. 
Brent and I " PUT AWAY the IPOD and DVD Player...I thought we said no electronics in RMNP?" 
Kids..." meant ALL DAY the WHOLE DAY?
Brent and I..."yes  and yes, Owen you have to put on your shoes AGAIN.  DO NOT TAKE THEM OFF AGAIN or you won't be able get out?"

We saw a couple dozen elk along this road (which I know has a name for it, but can't remember and I'm not looking it up)  There is a place to stop and get out and take another good walk/hike across the tundra.  It was cold and windy and damp out, but we did it anyway.  hey we were on vacation and nowhere to go be but RIGHT THERE.
Maddie posing on some rocks.

My throat caught for a moment when I took this picture.  I think he looks SOO grown up. 

More pics from Tundra.

We made it to Estes Park and stayed at some cabin/condos right outside RMNP entrance. Only a couple of miles.  It was really fun to be so close, where we could come and go as much as we wanted. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Summer Vacation Day 1 -Georgetown CO

This summer we had the opportunity to go on a family vacation.  A vacation where no one played ball, or had meetings, or really an agenda.  Sure we wanted to hit a few places but no real specific time frame.  In fact our first stop was the only place we had reservations and had to be on time. 

We did some research and I would HIGHLY recommend Trip Advisor.  I used it everyday to check out different things to do and many, many people gave ideas and off the beaten path roads and hikes and even where to find coupons.. 

Anyhoo...first stop was Georgetown Colorado.  We road a train and toured an old Silver Mine.  It was ok.  Owen enjoyed the train and the weather was great.  It is amazing to me how in the mountains it can be sunny and then rain and storm and then be sunny a matter of 10 minutes or less.  CRAZY. 

 Waiting for our train..yes bridge in background we go on it and under it...
 Still waiting
 waiting some more. it comes
 View from top of bridge...we had an open car on the way to mine and closed car on way back.
We ate Subway sandwiches along with chips and grapes that we packed in cooler before train trip.  It was a good thing, cuz our train left at 11:45 and on the way back from mine train broke down for about a 10-15 minute repair.  I think we were back to car by 2:45...

We had stopped to ask about white water rafting and a local told us about this glacier so we decided to check it out.  Owen fell asleep on the way up in car and we did drive a ways.  So between being woke up and hungry..he was in no mood to hike.  And it was a little jaunt to the glacier.

 You can sort of see all 4 of my family.  Garrett didn't hang around to close to us.  Apparently he  thought our family cheer was to embarrassing for an 11 year to stand!
 Maddie was faking this fake smile...she wasn't really in the mood to hike either and again it was a bit rough and hard, but in the end SO WORTH IT..

 Taking a breather...Seriously Owen was in NO mood...

AWWWWE...There she is St. Mary's Glacier

 It is hard to see but it started raining on us...

G & M posing for a pic.  
 Owen wanted to eat..but no picnic in the rain.  And seriously he had atleast 2 granola bars on the hike up.
 FINALLY FOOD...He was good after that.  Yes we ate subway again..5 dollar footlongs are just to hard to pass up..

A very nice man offered to take our picture. 
Owen still didn't smile for him though. 

 Brent and Garrett slid down the glacier on their rear ends right before we left.  Pretty sure that was Brent's favorite part of the entire vacation..