Rocky Mountain National Park

Full disclosure: neither Ben nor I knew how to drive stick shift before this trip. So once we started getting into the mountains of Colorado, things were a little hairy, starting the car on the slopes of mountains. I’d never been so high up before and the road was on the side of a very steep mountain so even being in the passenger seat I was feeling afraid every time we went around one of the hairpin turns. I guess I’m a little afraid of heights. We got there late in the afternoon and met up with two friends without any time to get a hike in before dark. There were about 15 elk in our campground, which got very close to us. The night skies were beautiful and the weather was great.

The next morning, we hiked a trail to Mount Ida, which summits over 12,800 feet. Suffice it to say, being from Philadelphia, we had not sufficiently acclimated to the altitude in 24 hours. We actually stopped about 200ft from the summit because they felt like they were getting sick (shh, don’t tell anyone ;). We were all still getting used to putting in big miles and the altitude so the walk back we were essentially zombies.  That evening we stopped in Estes park and stopped at two awesome breweries.

The next day we wanted to get in a short hike before driving to glacier. We ended up hiking to the summit of Deer mountain, which was much easier. We left the park around 3pm and drove about 14 hours all the way to Glacier National park. I took the first shift until about 10pm and then Ben took us the rest of the way. At least three monster energy drinks were consumed between the both of us.

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