It's hard to be a photographer this time of year. Everyone knows that the best photos are taken during the golden time just before and after sunrise. The problem is that this time of year the sun comes up at 5:35am in this part of Colorado! If it were just me - no problem. I would get up at 4am and be in a prime location for the perfect shot at the golden moment. But my traveling partner can best be described as a 140 pound lump of apathy. Enough said.
We hit the road about 7:45 this morning and wound our way up the west side of RMNP along Trail Ridge Road. It was a "severe clear" morning with temps in the low 40's as we crossed the continental divide. We managed to make it to the Moraine Visitors Center at 9:10am. That was 10 minutes after the road to Bear Lake closed to private vehicles. We were forced to ride the shuttle! Uggggghhhhh.
The road to Bear Lake is under construction and between that and the mandatory shuttle system, we took about an hour to make the 15 minute trip. From the Bear Lake Trailhead we hiked about two miles to Bierstadt Lake. Here's a shot of Bear Lake.
Bierstadt Lake is named for the famous German-American painter, Albert Bierstadt, who visited the area in 1876. Here's a shot of Bierstadt Lake from the loop trail.
We made the steep descent down to the Bierstadt Trailhead for a total of about four miles in time to wait for the shuttle to take us back to our vehicle. About an hour later we completed the fifteen minute trip. It was a good hike and even though the shuttle was a pain, I would recommend the experience to anyone....especially if you have your own 140 pound lump of apathy.
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