We have spent a summer visiting some of the major national parks and enjoyed each one. It takes a certain mind set to enjoy the area. The parks are overrun with visitors and are really getting loved to death. Thankfully the majority of visitors drive in, take a picture and jump right back in their cars. To avoid the mass of tourists, we camp inside the park and explore early morning and evenings.
We camped at Moraine Campground and loved it. Our site was amazing with expansive views and no neighbors to close or within sight of our patio. All the other campsites are located behind us and out of site.
Our fist day was dedicated to researching solutions to the broken water pump. We went to the visitor center for wifi and spent the afternoon searching for replacement pumps. We found one a few hours away and made plans to pick it up the following day. But in the morning, we took out the broken pump and Dave began messing with it. After taking it apart, cleaning, tightening and putting everything Dave reinstalled it. It worked! Dave saved the day and saved us some money and over 3 hours of time picking up a replacement pump. We celebrated by washing dishes.
We hiked, drove trail ridge, visited with friends and enjoyed the park. Kurt and his sister came in for a couple of days and we enjoyed the Trail Ridge drive and sampling the local brewery. Jessie a former nomad, now in Fort Collins came out for an evening campfire with all of us. Laura, a friend from Bend who now lives in Boulder came out for a day of hiking as did Kendall.
My favorite hike was The Loch. The scenery was beautiful as you hike a massive waterfall up to the lake. From the lake you see a few other waterfalls and the glacier. The crowds coming down from the lake were constant. It felt like a trail of ants coming down from the lake. We also did the Cub Lake hike in the pouring rain, but still enjoyed the scenery. Bierstadt and Bear Lake also made the hiking agenda.
Originally I thought my best chance to see a moose would have been within the park. But after the amazing experiences at Brainard, only a moose visiting my campsite would have been better. To date, no moose seen within the park. We did hear about a moose, but never spotted him. We also heard many stories about a bear on our hike to Bierstadt Lake. We did see a paw print in the mud, but I am pretty sure it was a prank. I did spot several deer and a few elk herds along with too many ground squirrels getting fed by stupid tourists.
Our next visit to Rocky Mountain National Park will be in the fall or winter to see the changes. We will definitely stay in the park again and enjoy the easy trailhead access and avoiding the crazy entrance lines.