By Patty Wilber
In order to see if my body stays in shape using only horseback riding as exercise, I went backpacking for my birthday with the Spouse and Progeny #2.
We went to Rocky Mountain National Park. Rocky mountain high, a la John Denver. (Which, since 2007, is one of the official state songs of Colorado. Click the link to hear it.)
My trip leaders billed this as a very leisurely 6 mile hike up Inlet Creek. It turns out doing pretty much anything outdoors with that duo results in the Epic Dial being in play. And it was 7 miles. Just saying.
Mark, me and Jim. Mark’s wife Erika, missed the fun. She is in Vancouver!
First off, we drove from Estes Park (the town) into the National park, and the park was spectacular! We saw a huge bull elk, a huge dead bull elk, pronghorn and then I said, “I would sure like to see another moose” (having seen some in Alaska). We turned the corner and there was a bull moose!
I then tried conjuring up a bear on the drive, but that did not work. (We were also bear-free out on the trail, which was fine with me.)
The hike in was uphill, but the grade was gradual, so while is was not “very leisurely”, it was not strenous. Also, my pack was light (this being a one night excursion), so the hike (and a short-on purpose-freezing cold swim in the creek for Jim and Mark) went well.
We cleared a down tree, because, well, once a Back Country Horseman trail volunteer, always a trail volunteer, even if your horses are at home. In truth, I directed and Jim did the work.
Continue reading »