There is a Facebook Page called Enjoy Estes Park and every Thursday they run a contest for an all expenses paid trip to Estes Park, free lodging, free meals, Free beer and wine, free snacks throughout the day, free rental of sporting goods and they even gave us money to spend in some of the stores in town. They started doing it in October and it runs for 36 weekends through May. They start every Thursday then pick someone by Saturday night for 2 weekends ahead. 2 weeks ago I won! So this past weekend we had a fun weekend in Estes. I wasn’t sure with all we had to do for free that we would get in time for hike or snowshoe but we did.
Saturday was crazy beautiful when we woke up at 6AM…. I was determined to get in a hike or snowshoe! What was not so great… the headache and disconnected head I woke up with. I will admit I still thought this was my crown work at this point since it had been hanging around all week at weird times. I am not one to give into things like this when I have so much planned and like so many before me, I just pushed through…..
As we drove up to Rocky Mountain National Park ( after our free breakfast) I saw views I had never seen before, as I have reflected on this shock of awe it occurred to me that every time I have actually entered the park it has been cloudy, snowy or stormy. I think if had seen the views I saw last Saturday I would have been in RMNP more frequently before now. I have to be honest here, I didn’t want to leave….like EVER.
It took us almost an hour to get to the Trail Ridge Road parking lot and trail( Snowshoe details here) because we kept stopping to take pictures. I figured that we could hit this trail again and see what it looks like outside of a snow storm, assuming there were views.
When we pulled up to the parking area, I was still not feeling so hot and I seriously chalked it up to poor sleep and the crown. So we climbed up on one side of the parking area to get this shot, I figured it was just exhaustion.
We scouted out the trail and saw it was all straight ice and decided that we didn’t need to bring our snowshoes, but if I was honest with myself I knew I couldn’t carry the snowshoes anyway. We started hiking up the road and the views were amazing!
It was pretty much after this turn that I checked out….. that disconnected head thing that happens when you have a head cold, well I was there. The views were crazy amazing and I was loving them but I was also out of touch….
We walked for about a mile and then all the sudden the snow was deep, and us with no snowshoes… the good or bad of it was, I was completely oblivious and just kept following Aaron. He was following other footprints so I didn’t care much about our direction and then the other foot prints were gone … I still didn’t care much I just had my head down thinking-> put one foot in front of the other.
As we moved forward, I was fighting with myself the whole way thinking WTF this is cake why am I struggling> get over the stupid tooth thing already ….. while Aaron was moving forward on 2-5 feet of snow with no input from me. He did awesome, as he always does, but about a quarter to half mile into the snow the tracks we and been following turned around while we kept going.
It was both cool and foggy as we went forward, I completely figured out the snowshoe trail I could not see the last time. The hard route from Hidden Valley to Trail Ridge Road > Can you see it?
As we were moving through this last little bit I realized I was totally sick…. its not the tooth.
At one point Aaron turned around and said what do you think, I just stared at him and said whatever…. he knew >I had the sick face…. so he said check the time we still have a lot of awards to get. Sure enough it was 11 and we needed to turn around. It was then that I realized I was totally sick. For the record it only took me 20 minutes more to voice it….
The drive out was both beautiful and painful….. I never wanted to leave, I was so excited about our prizes AND completely sick….. We stopped at every awe point and took pictures, we went into town and celebrated our wins, we left early the next morning and I spent the next 36 hours in bed.
I had a crazy good time in Estes Park despite my illness, I loved seeing Trail Ridge Road without a storm, I loved driving through RMNP with moody weather and skies. I loved going through town and gathering our prizes…. What I didn’t love was, was being sick the whole time. Either way we got some good pictures…..