On our last stop in the Rockies before descending into the plains on our way east, we visited Rocky Mountain National Park. We camped just outside the park in Estes Park so that we could have a full utility hookup, letting us run our heater all night. In September, fall is in full swing in the high Rockies, and nighttime temperatures dipped into the 30’s.
The park was crowded with leaf peepers there to see the bright orange, yellow and red leaves of the pockets of Aspen sprinkled among the evergreens. The trees really are beautiful, and they got us excited about spending the fall back east.
We spent most of our time hiking in the park, hiking to Cub Lake, around Bear Lake, and to Mills Lake. The Mills lake hike is fantastic. A little less than eight miles, it took us above 10,000 feet to a beautiful lake at the base of a valley. We huffed and puffed all the way up and all the way down, carrying Jane and Wilson on our backs, but the long range views and turning leaves of Aspen provided great rewards for the effort.
RMNP is worth a return trip one day for some backcountry backpacking. The park is massive, and we sampled barely a percentage with our day hikes.
Here are our photos from Rocky Mountain National Park