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

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: North Inlet Trail to Lakes Nokoni and Nanita

August 20, 2021. Three days before the start of fall semester. For the first time in 16 months, I would be back in the classroom. I would be teaching one class I’ve taught before… and two new ones. Suffice it to say there were some nerves and anxiety. Fortunately, we had a Rocky backcountry permit… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: North Inlet Trail to Lakes Nokoni and Nanita

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 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

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

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Sandbeach Lake

In Colorado, one can find sand in the most unexpected and/or unusual locations. Much like the aftermath of a day at the beach. Case in point: Great Sand Dunes National Park. Case in point #2: Sandbeach Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park. The trail to Sandbeach Lake departs from the parking area immediately to the… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Sandbeach Lake

Colorado, Rocky Mountain National Park, US National Parks

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Estes Cone

Estes Cone was not plan A for Chelsea and me on this particular weekend. But April and May in Colorado are part of what we Coloradans call the “spring of deception.” No matter how warm and sunny it is, no matter how many days in a row the nice weather endures, make no mistake: it's… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Estes Cone

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

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Black Lake (the winter version)

Exactly one week after conquering Sky Pond in the winter – my last hike of 2020 – I found myself back at Glacier Gorge trailhead, this time with my friend Kaylyn, for my first hike of 2021! We were fighting cold gusty winds as we readied ourselves to head up the other half of the… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Black Lake (the winter version)

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

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Sky Pond (the winter version)

Frozen alpine lakes have become one of my favorite things since moving to Colorado. I just love the icy winter scenery so much. It’s already become an annual thing for us to hike to some of the more easily accessible lakes in Rocky every winter. But this winter, my friend Savannah and I had a… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Sky Pond (the winter version)

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

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Deer Mountain

It’s not every day that you hike a trail and find yourself nearly face-to-face with its namesake animal. But such was the case on Deer Mountain. (Better than coming face-to-face with a bear on Bear Peak, I suppose…) There were four of them, and they couldn’t have been more than 15 feet (4.5 m) away.… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Deer Mountain

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

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Twin Sisters Peak

2020 was a rough year for all of us, Rocky included. First, the park was closed for weeks in the spring due to the pandemic. Then it closed again for 15 days in October and November due to forest fires. In all, nearly 30,000 acres of the park burned. It was absolutely devastating to watch… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Twin Sisters Peak

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

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Lion and Snowbank Lakes

Pat and I could stay in Colorado for the rest of our lives (personally, I have few objections to this!) and probably never run out of places to backpack in Rocky. There are so many options. I haven’t actually counted, but I’m fairly certain that at least ¾ of the trails in the park extend… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Lion and Snowbank Lakes