Hiking, check.  Marathon, check.  Backpacking?  Hmmm….  Stuffed an oversized backpack & headed to nearby Nederland with Ro. Goal – our first overnighter in Colorado.  Destination – Lost Lake.

Took the free shuttle from Nederland High to Hessie Trailhead to avoid parking congestion on this near-perfect weather day (shuttle operates Memorial Day to Labor Day).  Spent 10 minutes talking to ‘the Moose Lady’ who provided ‘what/what not to do’ info on moose encounters.  Sadly, saw no moose this day despite Colorado’s recent uptick in numbers.

Arrived at Lost Lake in 45 minutes.  WOW – that was fast & all 9 camp sites were full.  What to do?  Hike on 🙂

Passed an older couple who talked up Woodland Lake, their favourite hike.  BAM & that’s how it’s done in the 303.  Sunshine, rushing water & an abundance of wildflowers – perfect Colorado summer.

5 miles in — past a meadow, another mountain stream and a grove of pine & spruce, Woodland Lake.

[Insert exclamation expressing astonishment or admiration.  Synonyms: holy cow, holy mackerel, holy moly, whoa; cool, amazing, awesome, far out.]

Set up camp & after watching Ro swim as far as his lead leash would let him go, was inspired to wash in the chilly glacier-fed waters.  Our only neighbors were 2 fishing couples on opposite sides of the lake (one came with a Jack Russell which kept Ro’s attention).  Peaceful.

Tied my food cache (energy bars) high in a nearby tree.  However left a meat bone in the tent for Ro.  Huh?  Yeah, all I really managed to do was limit my own nighttime snacking.  LOL!

Ro stayed alert most all night – perched at the front of the tent.

One low growl in the early evening but for the most part, still & quiet.  Plan A was to stab ‘the bear’ with a knife while Ro would be barking/causing chaos.  Yeah – need to think through a better Plan A before our next overnighter.  Never previously wielded a knife as a weapon – much less oppose a bear.  Maybe a can of bear mace makes more sense 🙂

Woke early, waded in a waterfall & return hiked by noon. HUGE fan of backpacking!

Ended the weekend with dinner & bluegrass at the historic Gold Hill Inn.  Accessible off a dirt road above Boulder at 8300ft, HIGHLY recommended!


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