Day 12 – Estes Park, Colorado

Saturday, June 15, 2013

As I left Rawlins for the Denver, the landscape slowly changed from a rugged rocky mountain terrain, devoid of trees and little vegetation to mountainsides covered with trees. Some of the mountains had the unusual, wrinkled appearance of a Pug, with traces of fine grass accentuating the wrinkles. Other mountains looked as if a giant had stacked rocks on top of each other.



The elevation changed from 6500 ft to 8600 ft and back down to 6200 ft and back up to 7800 ft on Estes Park. The temperature varied from 65 F at the high elevations to 80 F at the lower elevations.

I stopped at the Colorado Visitor Center to check on the possibility of camping in the area and decided to head towards Estes Park, which is 70 miles northwest of Denver.

After checking with the Visitor Center in Estes Park, I rode to Moraine Park and I was lucky enough to secure a campsite in the ‘ non-reserved ‘ section of the park. Once you have one of these campsites, you can stay there for up to 7 days.

After pitching my tent, I headed back to Estes Park for some supper along the boardwalk next to the river. After supper, I walked along the board walk and listened to a street musician for a little while before heading back to camp.

A view from the restaurant.


On the way back to the campsite I spotted 3 elk having their supper at the park entrance.


The scenery here is beautiful. My tent opens up to a view of the mountains which are covered with evergreen trees.


The campsite is more primitive than Bridge Bay in Yellowstone. There is no running water, electricity or flush toilets so I can’t use my hair dryer or wash up. In the reserved section, there is running water, sinks and flush toilets, so if I could use them, if I wanted to. All this, for the staggering fee of $20/ day. What’s a retired person supposed to do. I tried to get a senior’s discount, but they wouldn’t go for it.