Travels With Dick and Judy

Follow us in our trials, triumphs and tribulations, while on the road in our motor home "The Liberty Belle". We chose to forsake the conventional lifestyle in our 3,000+ square-foot home to move into a 40-foot Winnebago Ultimate Freedom. Travel with us as we take you on the road with us in our new lifestyle.
I may grow older, but I'll never grow up!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Week In Pictures

Well, we picked up Michelle and Logan at DIA in Aurora on Tuesday, July 24th, and brought them home with us, via a few stops and the Big Thompson Canyon.  But that’s another story.  Their visit prompted us to be their "English-speaking guides” and show them the sights up here in Estes.  The details of their visit and the different places we visited will be covered by Judy when she posts the “family update” shortly.  In the meantime, here are some of the pics we shot while out and about the past week.  I hope you enjoy them as much as we enjoy sharing the bounties of nature this area has to offer.

Hike around Bear Lake and up to Alberta Falls.

This is taken from a moraine ridge near the Moraine Park Headquarters in RMNP, where we caught the shuttle to the Bear lake Trailhead..  Long's Peak is lost in the clouds above the notch and the Estes Cone to the right of it.  The forested hill in the foreground is made up of boulders and rocks that were "dumped " as the glacier receded at the end of the last ice age.  These guys are large enough to make any of the "mountains" in the Texas Hill Country look like small dirt piles.

 This little guy was hopping all over the parking lot.  Interesting color pattern, but I can't find a match in any of the bird ID books.  Can someone point me in the right direction?

This is the Clark's Nutcracker, very common around Bear Lake and an accomplished thief.  Although it is illegal to feed them, if you are lost in conversation with someone at a picnic table and happen to be holding a Cheeto out while talking, I can assure you they will steal it from between your fingertips!

I have never seen this one before, but I think it's called a Pine Grosbeck.  This is a good example of how man can live with nature and not have it flee at the first sign.  These two were only about five feet away.

Logan, my normally hyperactive grandson, spotted this hare on the Alberta Falls segment and motioned for all of us to "be still".

Notice his paw is still with its winter camo for the snow.

Many "shrooms" can be eaten
with no ill effects.  Trust me...
These are not of that ilk.

No matter where you go in the park, flowers abound.  Some are solitary figures; others seek their kind.


 There is beauty...even in death...

You have a question?

Hurry, It's almost dark!  That's when they come to life!

It's a short trail, but the destination is not the only reward!  The journey took us past some beautiful scenes. 

Sorry folks; I left my wide angle back at the car.

Over the Great Divide

Thursday was determined as the day we were to cross the Great Divide.  Actually, we went in search of the stately moose.   We had heard rumors we could lay our eyes on some on the Western slope.

As we drove slowly along, we were greeted with the sight of a herd of elk, grazing in the meadow.


After seeing the elk, we were even more determined to find a moose!

And we did...

Can't forget the flowers!


Allenspark is a small community about 15 miles down Hwy. 7 from Estes.  Some may call it a ghost town.  But it does have a gift shop, a coffee shop and a gourmet restaurant (appointment only and pricey.)  The best thing about it, though, is the artesian spring it has there.  Almost as good a Fiji water.

St. Malo Catholic Retreat Center

Allenspark is strewn with both occupied
and abandoned cabins like this!

Did I mention this water taste really good?

The Alluvial Fan

The Fan area is on the Fall River side of RMNP and one of our favorite places to go.  Unfortunately, it is one of the areas the National Park Service has chosen to "super-civilize".

Natural paths through the forest are being replaced by paved pathways
that make it more accessible for tons of tourists...YUK!

This Yellow-Bellied Marmot was heading uphill to "people watch" when we spotted him!

The Golden-Mantled Ground Squirrel is often confused with the Least Chipmunk by tourists.  The squirrel is much chubbier (larger) and resembles the cartoon chipmunk.  The Least Chipmunk is much smaller, has stripes on his face and is very fidgety.

Golden-Mantled Ground Squirrel

The Least Chipmunk

The Bear Facts

We've been here for over two months now.  During this whole time, we have not had the opportunity to photograph a single bear.  This week, at last, we got the report that there was a bear treed in Estes Park next to the Big Thompson River.  He is a 400-lb. boar that is suspected of getting into the trash bins of a local RV park.

I really hope you enjoyed this posting.  Remember, Judy and I welcome your comments and invite you to join us in future postings by "Following" our Blog.

See ya! 

until next time...~dick~


  1. Loved the pics of Alberta Falls. . .we will be taking our grandaughter on that hike in a couple of weeks. . .and the moose were awesome. . .how far past the summit did you hafta go to find them?

    I believe the little bird is a Gray-headed Junco. . .

    Stay in touch,

  2. Janice, we left the Trail Ridge visitor center and found the moose about 10 miles before Granby. I told Dick we would drive until we found them or got to Granby - whichever occurred first. It was awesome!