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Old 10-05-2010, 06:43 AM   #5
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Joined: Jun 2008
Location: Alexandria, VA
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DAY 3 (Sept 5, 2010)

And on the third day he rested. I could easily gear up and take off to explore the mountain passes but this notion would be rude to my hosts. I have decided to use the day to slow my haste, relax, go for a hike and enjoy Boulder. Up at 6:30 as usual, I am the only one awake in the apartment till 10:30. I spend the time reading “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” and trying not to get too fidgety sitting still. I make a cup of coffee on the patio and soak in the warm morning sun, a little closer to the sky, a little higher in the atmosphere.

They wake and Matt drives us up to Rocky Mountain National Park. The route out of Boulder affords a beautiful view of the expansive grasslands as far as the eye can see. The temperature is already warmer and in the mid 80’s but the park’s higher altitude assures a more comfortable hike/climb. Descending on Estes Park, my cousin points out the Stanley Hotel, site of Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining”.


What an awesome Charger RT!


Estes Park Cops roll in style. Just watch out for those cliffs


After a stop at Safeway for snacks, we dive into Labor Day Traffic at the park entrance. The scenic drive up to the parking area is nothing short of spectacular for these eastern eyes.


The 13-14’000 ft peaks surrounding us grow closer as we drive higher into the park amongst the throngs of Labor Day tourists, myself included. We hike to glacial lakes; I see alluvium and moraines for my first time.



My cousin and I taking a break to eat a granola bar and enjoy the cascading stream.


The epic crags force me to bend my neck back accessing their relief and geologic composition.

Here I am stunned by the beauty of this unique terrain.


Thousand year old pine


Fly Fisherman are in every lake trying their luck.


Over Here! Over Here!





We hike a diverse eight miles through dense pines, white aspens and arid sage shrub circling one peak.




Longs Peak in the distance. Gimmeslack has summited this 14 footer.






I just thought this couple looked good in the picture. I bet they'd like a copy.


One of the lakes had an emerald green hue to it. The wind picked up here and the clouds got darker so we started back for the car.






The drive back to town is uneventful and I let my cousin take Critter II for a ride around town. He returns with a big smile on his face and is later seen picking through ads on craigslist for inexpensive motorcycles. Along with his roommates, we make the short drive into Boulder for a Thai dinner. I wind up paying for a split meal with one of his roommates but $7 is a small price to pay for their half. The generous offer to stay two nights and take me around the sights was well worth my small investment. We retire and play guitar on the patio, talking in the warm winds well into the night. I eventually explain I must rest and fall asleep around midnight to sounds entering an open window, of breezes flapping the porch awning and whooshing through the neighborhood trees. Tomorrow I explore Colorado.
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