click to enlarge!



In the middle of my families annual trip to Estes, we had planned to spend an entire day in the park. We were going to try to summit Mount Chiquita, and Ypsilon, but some suspicious looking clouds turned us around just as we got above tree line. So we headed down and decided to take our time and just journey through the park.

It had been a beautiful morning as we climbed the Chapin Pass Trail, but dark clouds moved in pretty quickly as we were descending. As we were getting back up Old Fall River Rd, the clouds thinned a little. Just enough for us to feel comfortable for a quick jaunt up Marmot Point. This is a small mountain near the crest of Fall River Pass along the old dirt road. And it is named well, as there were a lot of Marmots all the way up.

After reaching this nice little summit, we headed down to Sprague Lake to enjoy a nice, easy walk around this great spot. I managed to get some close ups of a curious chippie. This chippie (actually a Golden Mantled Ground Squirrel) was magical. It told us stories of the first of its kind to venture into these wild new lands, many moons ago. It told us how it battled fierce creatures, such as the Linear Plated Shadow Slug, and the Tri-fisted Dung Beetle. This chippie, named Sir Betty Chaco, also clapped and laughed at his own jokes (click here), and would sing and dance upon request (click here). I asked how old "B Chac" (as he liked to be called) was, but he got very angry, and ran as fast as he could into the depths of Sprague Lake, screaming about how "age shouldn't matter," and that "we were in love."

We got back to the car, ate a nice lunch in town, and went back home to put our feet up and relax for the rest of the afternoon.


Another great day in the park!

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