Monday, August 1, 2016

Colorado Rocky Mountain Travels

Rocky Mountain High

Hi friends! Guess where I've been the last ten days? Only one of the most beautiful places on Earth...the Rocky mountains of Colorado! You can see my excitement at being in the midst of all of this awesome beauty in the picture above. Mr.thisandthat and I snuck away for a combination family visit/vacation which took us to Denver, Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park. Now, I know that looking at other people's vacation photos can be a little boring....but won't you please indulge me a little as I share some of our trip? Can't you hear John Denver singing as you look at these pictures? Today, I'm sticking to pics from Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park.

Here's my handsome hubby and I as we arrive at Estes Park, Colorado. (A stranger kindly offered to take our picture together.) We have gone here just about every summer for the last eight years, or so, and enjoy it each time. My husband is an avid hiker and I enjoy walking and "light" hiking.  We get the best of both worlds in Estes Park which is located right outside Rocky Mountain National Park. We stay at the Wildwood Inn which is about half a mile from the park entrance. While my husband does mountain climbing (hiking not rope climbing) at the 14,000 foot level, I do more "gentle" hiking like around lakes and at Ute Meadow Trail which is between 10,000-11,000 foot elevation in RMNP.  I'm on Ute Meadow Trail in the first pic of this post.

Here I am dressed in my "Nanook of the North" look at the beginning of Ute Meadow Trail. Hard to believe you need to dress like this in July, but at elevations above 10,000 feet, it is still cold! My hubby dressed a little less warmly, but I like to be comfortable and I am colder than he is! 

Here's my rugged mountain man!  He loves photography and was snapping photos most of the way. He got some great shots. 

The mountain views from Ute Meadow are AMAZING! You can basically turn 360 degrees and see mountain views like this. When I hike here, I always think about how I am walking on paths first walked on by the Ute Indians. It's very humbling to think I am following in their footsteps. This trail is accessed by driving to the top of Trail Ridge Road which is the highest continuously paved road in the country. This road goes from one side of RMNP to the other side. Ute Meadow Trail is located around halfway through the drive.

This little fellow decided to pose for us. Marmots are common at high elevations in RMNP. 

                                        Please, no paparazzi!!

Hiking around lakes is more my speed than the rugged mountain climbing in RMNP. Here I am getting ready to hike around Lily Lake, one of my fave hikes in the park. 

I also enjoy hiking around Lake Estes Trail which is not located in RMNP but is in Estes Park, the small town adjacent to the park where we stay. 

Lake Estes is also very beautiful. However, lots of people walk and ride bicycles around the lake, so you will see more people here in town than on trails at the high elevations in the park. 

There were lots of these covered bikes being rented and pedaled around the lake the day I walked here. 

But, out of all the places in the park that I go to, the most beautiful, in my opinion, is Bear Lake. We got up at 5:00 a.m. to get to the lake before the hordes (and I do mean hordes as this is the most popular spot in the park) begin to arrive. We were able to see the sun come up over the lake. Breathtaking! I'm also pretty proud of this photo I took. I got the reflection of the mountain in the lake. Hooray!!

I was so happy to be able to see Bear Lake again!

So, for today, let's let the sun set over the Rocky Mountains as I finish this first post about our travels. As I snapped photos on this trip, I definitely had my blog in mind! It was a bit of a challenge to keep posts going while we traveled due to spotty wireless coverage and being on the go. But, I did get a couple posts posted. If you missed these last couple of posts on nail color and my blog's first birthday I hope you will take a moment to catch up. I'm stoked about a great first year of blogging!

Hope you are having a great summer as well, dear readers! Please leave a comment and let me know about your summer and/or what your comments are about my travel. Have you ever been to Estes Park or RMNP? 

Until Next Time,

(All photos of Debbie taken by Bill Ross. All other photos taken by Debbie Ross, unless otherwise noted in the text. All images property of

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Karen said...

Oh my! How very beautiful Debbie! I sure did enjoy seeing your pictures. I can see why you love it there and why you go back, and yes, I can just hear John Denver singing Rocky Mountain High!! That's a really handsome fella you have! I for one would love to see more pics so keep them coming!

Debbie Styles Life said...

So glad you enjoyed the trip pictures, Karen. I plan to do a couple more posts on other aspects of the trip, as well, so stay tuned!

Unknown said...

I love your pictures. The one with the lake and the mountain is fabulous. I just bought a "real" (as opposed to an iPhone) camera in June and am trying to learn how to use it. Colorado sounds wonderful. Thanks for sharing with #overthemoon!

Debbie Styles Life said...

Thank you, Cathy. I still have much to learn about photography. Good luck with your new camera!

Anonymous said...

This looks like such a cool and refreshing place compared to where I am in the oh-so-hot and humid Southern U.S. right now! I just might have to put this place on my to-visit bucket list! --G

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

What a fabulous trip! 2 of my sons hiked Pike's Peak this summer. We all love to hike but I hike in Florida most of the time now. I always forget what those little marmots are cute!

Over Fifty in Hollywood said...

Wow, your blog is a breath of fresh air. The pictures that you all took are gorgeous, I can only imagine standing there taking it all person. Enjoy and thanks for sharing! -Julie

Debbie Styles Life said...

The mountains were cool and refreshing, Ginger. I think you would enjoy a visit there!

Debbie Styles Life said...

Yes, those little marmots are cute. They like to pose for the camera!

Debbie Styles Life said...

Thanks so much, Julie. It was a beautiful place to visit, for sure!