Rocky Mountain National Park

This year's National Parks trip with the crew, otherwise known as Bear Jam, began as the trip that almost never was.  Last minute buy-in from key founders led to an impromptu schedule that manifested itself as a trip full of unknowns and fortunate whereabouts.  And when I say "this year," I mean 2012.  Time flies when you're jobless and traveling... or employed and traveling.  I'm running out of bad excuses.  After several proposed and subsequently nixed plans, we landed on a final itinerary including Rocky Mountain National Park, Denver for a Rockies game (men's trip from here on out), Salida and Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, Telluride, and a happenstance cruise through Colorado National Monument.  

Misplaced luggage, surprise luxury suite upgrades, unexpected international rendezvous/weapon firing, 100 bags of beef jerky, and impossible scenery at every stop... Bear Jam 2012.

Alberta Falls

 exploring Sundance Mountain

view of Gore Range from Trail Ridge Road (click for larger image)

Nate & Haley

is that a....


sunset view 

Dream Lake

Lake Helene (click for larger image)

view down to Odessa Lake from Lake Helene (click for larger image)

We almost didn't go to Odessa Lake, but we ran into two people who were on their way back onto the trail from the Odessa Lake approach who said we absolutely had to check it out. 

Odessa Lake approach

I was pretty psyched that the newspaper clipping I ripped off to mark my sandwich just happened to be a dude whose name was a combination of both mine and the great Southern Ocean Explorer, Robert Scott.  Odd coincidence considering I'd just been in the Southern Ocean overlapping his historic rescue route just months prior.

fishermen on Lake Odessa

Odessa Lake (click for larger image)

worm wood

Nate getting the best angle

post hike rewards

Bear Jam crew picking up snacks for the road

Estes Park memorabilia

 Nate & Haley at the Stanley Hotel

Next stop, Salida and Gunnison with a stop in Boulder and Denver on the way.

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