Family Nature Summit - Day 1
It doesn't take long for Family Nature Summit to get into full swing. After all, it's only five days of activities. So outfitted with our name tags and green scarves - green for folks that have been to two to four summits - Hannah and I went to our separate activities. She went to her Junior Naturalist program and I went hiking to Black Lake in Rocky Mountains National Park.
The hike into Black Lake was a solid 10 miles, 1,700 feet of ascent from the Bear Lake Trailhead. But it was the altitude that made it a challenge for me.
This hike had so many highlights. First Alberta Falls, a rushing torrent that attracted a lot of visitors. The water cut a large swath through gray rocks. After Alberta Falls, most visitors turned around. We continued to Mills Lake, a large, quiet lake about 2.8 miles from the trailhead.
But after Mills Lake, the trail was empty. We walked through Ponderosa Pines and aspens and saw several types of wildflowers including Columbine, the state flower. The trail passed Jewel Lake, a small jewel that we were able to see through trees. Then we hiked through the result of a wind storm, a micro burst, which I kept called microbrew. The trail had been cleared but the cut stumps and large rootballs will be around for years.
Finally Black Lake, a brooding lake with a rocky shore line. We settled in for lunch but the skies opened up. We packed up quickly and headed down.
Hannah is in a group with 11 other kids going into the 3rd and 4th grade. She knows several girls from last year.
She reported that they hiked all over the "Y" and saw a pika, chipmunk and ground squirrel. Then the "recycle" lady helped them make jewelry from recycled material. That was a big hit and she wore her jewelry at dinner.
After dinner (dinner is very early here), we decided that neither of us wanted to see a slide show. So I took her and her best friend to the swimming pool.
Tomorrow, we both go into the Park.