Friday, May 18, 2012

Colorado Vacation

 This week I've been away from home - driving, hiking. and riding around my lovely state! We took a nice ride thru Glenwood canyon to hike the trail to hanging lakes.
 On the east end it is dry open brushland, right next to the river is the only color. It's been a dry year already, and many spots look like late summer instead of spring!
 The canyon quickly becomes deep and narrow. The highway is a bit of an engineering marvel, with the lanes crossing over each other, over the river, thru tunnels long and short, and suspended from the canyon walls. The bike path winds back and forth under the highway in many spots, making for an interesting vista.
 But when you're riding you get to take your time and really enjoy the scenery.
 Then we arrived at the trail head. On this part of the canyon the highway has disappeared into a long canyon, and only the bike path and train tracks line the river. I forgot to mention the train tracks that wind a narrow and precarious path along the canyon walls.
 It becomes very lush as you walk up the gulch. The trail is very steep and well traveled. We follow a small creek most of the way, with many little trickles flowing to meet it. I had to wonder about the first poor slops who broke this trail - they didn't even know what's at the top!
 There are plenty of little benches along the trail, so be sure to rest often.
 Nearing the top of the gulch one can no longer see the main canyon, and the steep rocky sides dwarf the tall trees.
 Tada! We've reached the top! The beautiful lake is kept this color by the dissolved minerals in the water. The lake was teeming with little fish and covered in a layer of algae.
What a wonderful place to have lunch! What's your favorite local attraction? I'll have more about the rest of our trip in the next post...

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