Winter Wonderland

In wander

As I mentioned in my teaser, we’re just back from a couple of nights in Rocky Mountain National Park. When Chris at Rocky Mountain Four Wheel Camper contacted us to confirm our camper shell would arrive right before our holiday break, we clamored for the first possible install date. He kindly accommodated our schedule and we took off for Denver last week looking a bit like the Clampetts, with the cab and bed of the truck full of gear and other odds and ends. We allowed a full day for the install, although it only takes a few hours, which gave us an excuse to indulge in all sorts of good food and drink in the city, then continued north to Estes Park. A heavy fog had settled down over the Front Range overnight, which made the drive a spooky adventure, and we did see a few SUV drivers in the canyon that had failed to anticipate the ice and snow on the dark curvy sections of road (fortunately no major incidents). Estes Park was quite busy with holiday getaway-ers, but the visitor center ranger laughed at us when I asked if the Park campground would be busy. Indeed, the section of Moraine Campground that remains open in the winter only housed 3 groups, including us, the first night, and maybe 5 or 6 on Christmas Eve. However, lots of folks were out, day-tripping, to take advantage of the sledding, skiing and snowshoeing. While we were in the park, we skied at Hidden Valley, the Sprague Lake-Glacier Gorge trail and did a bit of ad hoc exploring. Thanks to the intermittent snow flurries, we had great snow, but we were socked in the whole time. Occasionally we would glimpse just a hint of the famous views, which has enticed us to plan a return visit – but off season again, as I suspect winter is really the best season to visit the Park.

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