Rocky Mountain High – And it’s high

Ouzell FallsOur first full hiking day in  Rocky Mountain National Park was a short one. We hiked to Ouzell Falls from the Wild Basin entrance.

We’re staying at the YMCA Estes Park, a huge place with cabins, lodge rooms, day camps, swimming pool – you name it. And they lead several hikes each day.

We were a little cautious with the altitude. The town of Estes Park is at 7,500 ft., the “Y” at 8,000 ft. and the hike took us to almost 9.500 ft. So we chose a short hike to see how we would do. We were fine, partly because the pace was very slow.

We paralleled a river and passed three falls, the last Ouzell Falls, where we had an early lunch. We saw a marmot, a stellar jay and a dusky grouse with several chicks. They blend in so well I couldn’t get a photo.

The practice at the “Y” is to leave early and to return early as to avoid afternoon thunderstorms. For example, the big hike to Long’s Peak starts at 1:30 A.M. I doubt if I’ll do that one. You have to work up to it and I won’t be staying long enough for that.

Tomorrow’s hike starts at 7:30 A.M. and I have to get ready.

 

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