Colorado, Colorado Hikes

Colorado Day Hikes: Isabelle Glacier

Do you ever have one of those hikes where the scenery just blows you away? There’s so much beauty in Colorado that the bar for that kind of awe has been set pretty damn high. But Isabelle Glacier exceeded that bar. Lake Isabelle is one of the most popular hikes near Denver, and with good… Continue reading Colorado Day Hikes: Isabelle Glacier

Colorado, Colorado Hikes, Rocky Mountain National Park, US National Parks

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: East Inlet Trail to Lake Verna and Spirit Lake

Back in June 2019, my mom and I were signed up for a summer solstice Women Who Hike group backpacking trip on East Inlet Trail, with Lake Verna and Spirit Lake as our ultimate destination. Unfortunately, the first day of summer was marked by a massive snowstorm that forced a last-minute change of plans. Fast… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: East Inlet Trail to Lake Verna and Spirit Lake

Colorado, Colorado Hikes

Colorado Day Hikes: Herman Gulch

I first hiked Herman Gulch back in September 2018, a challenging but beautiful outing in the midst of peak fall color season. More recently, Pat, my mom, and I completed this hike in the summer and instead of yellow leaves we found ourselves surrounded by wildflowers. So I decided now would be a good time… Continue reading Colorado Day Hikes: Herman Gulch

Colorado, Colorado Hikes

Colorado Day Hikes: Silver Dollar and Murray Lakes

One really nice benefit to living in Denver is that my mom and I are now only a 70-minute, $100 flight away from each other. As a result, we’re able to see each other a lot more often than when I lived across the country. She does plenty of exploring on her own in Montana… Continue reading Colorado Day Hikes: Silver Dollar and Murray Lakes

Colorado, Colorado Hikes, Colorado Summits, Rocky Mountain National Park, US National Parks

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Flattop Mountain and Hallett Peak

It was a long time coming, but 2021 was the year Chelsea and I finally stood atop Hallett Peak! I don’t remember when we originally decided we wanted to do this hike, but it was a while ago. The first time we made plans for it, Chelsea had to cancel. The second time, I was… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Flattop Mountain and Hallett Peak

About me, Colorado, Colorado 14ers, Colorado Hikes, Colorado Summits

Colorado 14er #2: Mount Bierstadt

I’ve been hiking since I was too young to remember, and in that time I’ve accumulated quite a few hiking accomplishments. But one thing I’d never done in all 32 years of my life was go hiking alone. In general, I don’t consider myself an anxious person. Sure, I have my moments of anxiety when… Continue reading Colorado 14er #2: Mount Bierstadt

Montana

Montana road trip, part VI: acoustic geology at Ringing Rocks

The final stop on our six-day Montana road trip was quite possibly the most bizarre place I’ve ever been in my life: Ringing Rocks. Which is – as the name suggests – a collection of rocks that ring… when hit with a hammer, that is. It’s not entirely clear why this happens. Geologists think it has something to do with the composition of the boulders and the way they are all piled up together. If you remove a rock from the pile, it will no longer ring.

Montana

Montana road trip, part V: the richest hill on earth

In Montana, the license plate on your car reveals which of the state’s 56 counties you live in. It’s not a system that most states use, but in a low population state such as Montana it works pretty well. The county numbers were assigned numerically based on population; back in the day, Butte was by… Continue reading Montana road trip, part V: the richest hill on earth

Montana, US National Parks

Montana road trip, part IV: cowboys, old cars, & the prison museum

Next up on our Montana history tour: Deer Lodge, a small town with a surprising amount of history! We arrived mid-morning and our first stop was Grant-Kohrs National Historic Site. This is an old cattle ranch that’s still semi-active. They have horses and cattle on site and park workers give tours, talks, and demonstrations of… Continue reading Montana road trip, part IV: cowboys, old cars, & the prison museum

Montana

Montana road trip, part III: First Peoples Buffalo Jump State Park & Gates of the Mountains

Five of the six days of our Montana road trip were beautiful – warm, sunny, no rain to speak of. Perfect weather for exploring. And we did take advantage of this, although we spent some of our time inside on those days as well. So naturally, the one cold rainy day of our entire trip… Continue reading Montana road trip, part III: First Peoples Buffalo Jump State Park & Gates of the Mountains