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ESTES PARK, COLORADO

Hiking Rocky Mountain National Park

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Road Scholar
Program #4819RJ
6 Days | 5 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderately Challenging
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Elevation Note
Estes Park is at 7,522 ft, hikes will be 8,000-11,000 ft.

Equipment Requirements
Snowshoes are required. There are several local companies that rent snowshoes, or you may bring your own. Significant time will be spent outdoors in winter conditions. Dress in layers and be prepared for winter weather conditions that may vary greatly and change abruptly. Recommended list will be mailed.

Itinerary for Mar 9 — Mar 14, 2014

Expand all
Type: Conference Center

Description: Graced by the awe-inspiring mountains, elk, deer and other wildlife and adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park, YMCA of the Rockies’ Estes Park Center offers a wholesome, spiritual environment where families, friends and groups will be inspired by Nature and grow closer together. Surrounded on three sides by Rocky Mountain National Park, which was recently recognized as the #1 Outdoor & Adventure Destination in the United States, Estes Park Center is a unique mountain community offering more recreational and programming activities than any other area property. In addition to wildlife viewing, activities include individual and guided hiking tours into the park, horseback riding, swimming, fishing, hayrides, a zip line, two performing arts centers, a variety of educational programs and of the finest craft shops in America.

Contact info:
2515 Tunnel Road
Estes Park, CO 80511 USA
phone: 800-777-9622
web: http://www.ymcarockies.org/estes-park-center-colorado.html

Facility amenities: Free wireless Internet access Swimming pool on site

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day One: Sunday, March 09 - Arrive and lodge check-in 3-5:00 pm. Required ori...
Note: All of our snowshoe hikes this week will be in Rocky Mountain National Park, routes selected will depend upon fitness of the group, and will allow for adjusting to altitude and difficulty as week progresses.

Arrive To: Arrive and lodge check-in 3-5:00 pm. Required orientation at 5:00 pm. Welcome to the program! Exploring Rocky Mountain National Park by snowshoe is a wondrous experience and allows you to see the beauty of nature during the national park’s quietest season.

Dinner: Our dinner tonight will be in the cafeteria

Evening: Introductions, planning for the week

Lodging: YMCA of the Rockies

Meals Included: Dinner
Type: Conference Center

Description: Graced by the awe-inspiring mountains, elk, deer and other wildlife and adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park, YMCA of the Rockies’ Estes Park Center offers a wholesome, spiritual environment where families, friends and groups will be inspired by Nature and grow closer together. Surrounded on three sides by Rocky Mountain National Park, which was recently recognized as the #1 Outdoor & Adventure Destination in the United States, Estes Park Center is a unique mountain community offering more recreational and programming activities than any other area property. In addition to wildlife viewing, activities include individual and guided hiking tours into the park, horseback riding, swimming, fishing, hayrides, a zip line, two performing arts centers, a variety of educational programs and of the finest craft shops in America.

Contact info:
2515 Tunnel Road
Estes Park, CO 80511 USA
phone: 800-777-9622
web: http://www.ymcarockies.org/estes-park-center-colorado.html

Facility amenities: Free wireless Internet access Swimming pool on site

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Two: Monday, March 10 - Snowshoe to Cub Lake in Moraine Park
Note: Trailhead elevation is 8,250 feet. Today's hike is 6 miles round trip with a maximum elevation gain/loss of 540 feet. Highest elevation gained is 8,800 feet.

Breakfast: Full Breakfast in the cafeteria

Morning: Reflected sunlight sparkles in the snow. Tracks of tiny mice and great elk cross your trail. Daily snowshoe hikes reveal the beauty that is unique to winter. Our first hike is on The Cub Lake winter trail that begins in the willows along the Big Thompson River and continues upward through stands of pine and aspen. We will pass through a varied landscape of moraines, cliffs, streams, and frozen ponds. This hike may be combined with The Pool hike for a six-mile loop. The Pool is a turbulent water pocket formed below the confluences of Spruce and Fern Creeks with the Big Thompson River. While hiking this trail along the Big Thompson River, look for beaver-cut aspen, frozen waterfalls on the cliffs, and the Arch Rocks.

Lunch: Picnic box lunch on trail

Afternoon: After the completion of our snowshoe hike, we'll make a stop at the Beaver Meadows visitor center, then return to our lodging.

Dinner: Our dinner tonight will be in the cafeteria

Evening: Free for reflection, relaxation

Lodging: YMCA of the Rockies

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Conference Center

Description: Graced by the awe-inspiring mountains, elk, deer and other wildlife and adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park, YMCA of the Rockies’ Estes Park Center offers a wholesome, spiritual environment where families, friends and groups will be inspired by Nature and grow closer together. Surrounded on three sides by Rocky Mountain National Park, which was recently recognized as the #1 Outdoor & Adventure Destination in the United States, Estes Park Center is a unique mountain community offering more recreational and programming activities than any other area property. In addition to wildlife viewing, activities include individual and guided hiking tours into the park, horseback riding, swimming, fishing, hayrides, a zip line, two performing arts centers, a variety of educational programs and of the finest craft shops in America.

Contact info:
2515 Tunnel Road
Estes Park, CO 80511 USA
phone: 800-777-9622
web: http://www.ymcarockies.org/estes-park-center-colorado.html

Facility amenities: Free wireless Internet access Swimming pool on site

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Three: Tuesday, March 11 - Hike to Emerald Lake
Note: Trailhead elevation is 9,275 feet. Today's hike is 4 miles round trip depending upon options with a maximum elevation gain/loss of 600 feet. Highest elevation gained is 10,500 feet. There will also be an optional afternoon additional snowshoe hike.

Breakfast: Full Breakfast in the cafeteria

Morning: Today we will snowshoe to Emerald Lake. This has everything a winter aficionado needs; wind swept trees, frozen lakes, and towering peaks. Here are ice filled cascades and waterfalls, and massive peaks with glimmering snow against dark rock. Elk, coyotes, deer, snowshoe hares, and many other mammals remain active in the park through the winter, covered in dense winter coats. Learn how plants and animals survive wintertime using their unique adaptations and keen survival skills.

Lunch: Picnic box lunch on trail

Afternoon: Return to our lodging after the completion of the daily snowshoe hike. Expert presentation on Ice Climbing. Have you ever experienced the extreme sport of ice climbing? This presentation might be as close to the real thing as you ever get! See a slideshow of ice climbing pictures, pass around the tools necessary to climb, hear stories from our expert ice climber, and ask plenty of questions!

Dinner: Dinner on own to allow participants to enjoy downtown Estes Park and local restaurants on own

Evening: Free for reflection, relaxation

Lodging: YMCA of the Rockies

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Type: Conference Center

Description: Graced by the awe-inspiring mountains, elk, deer and other wildlife and adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park, YMCA of the Rockies’ Estes Park Center offers a wholesome, spiritual environment where families, friends and groups will be inspired by Nature and grow closer together. Surrounded on three sides by Rocky Mountain National Park, which was recently recognized as the #1 Outdoor & Adventure Destination in the United States, Estes Park Center is a unique mountain community offering more recreational and programming activities than any other area property. In addition to wildlife viewing, activities include individual and guided hiking tours into the park, horseback riding, swimming, fishing, hayrides, a zip line, two performing arts centers, a variety of educational programs and of the finest craft shops in America.

Contact info:
2515 Tunnel Road
Estes Park, CO 80511 USA
phone: 800-777-9622
web: http://www.ymcarockies.org/estes-park-center-colorado.html

Facility amenities: Free wireless Internet access Swimming pool on site

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Four: Wednesday, March 12 - Calypso Cascades of the Wild Basin Area.
Note: Activity Notes Today's trailhead is 8500 feet. We will hike 4 miles roundtrip with an elevation gain of 700 feet. Opportunities available to extend the hike depending on weather and group ability.

Breakfast: Full Breakfast in the cafeteria

Morning: Our hike today will start in the Wild Basin area of Rocky Mountain National Park. The elevation at the trailhead is 8,566 feet. This will be a day to enjoy beautiful frozen waterfalls. We will first come to Copeland Falls (.3miles), then climb 1.8 miles to Calypso Cascades. Calypso Cascades was named after the calypso orchid that is prevalent there during the summer months, also known as fairy slipper. On the trail you will see remains of a 1978 forest fire. This opened up the area to get a great view of Mt Meeker and Long’s Peak.

Lunch: Picnic box lunch on trail

Afternoon: Return to our lodging after the completion of the daily snowshoe hike.

Dinner: Our dinner tonight will be in the cafeteria

Evening: Free for reflection, relaxation

Lodging: YMCA of the Rockies

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Conference Center

Description: Graced by the awe-inspiring mountains, elk, deer and other wildlife and adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park, YMCA of the Rockies’ Estes Park Center offers a wholesome, spiritual environment where families, friends and groups will be inspired by Nature and grow closer together. Surrounded on three sides by Rocky Mountain National Park, which was recently recognized as the #1 Outdoor & Adventure Destination in the United States, Estes Park Center is a unique mountain community offering more recreational and programming activities than any other area property. In addition to wildlife viewing, activities include individual and guided hiking tours into the park, horseback riding, swimming, fishing, hayrides, a zip line, two performing arts centers, a variety of educational programs and of the finest craft shops in America.

Contact info:
2515 Tunnel Road
Estes Park, CO 80511 USA
phone: 800-777-9622
web: http://www.ymcarockies.org/estes-park-center-colorado.html

Facility amenities: Free wireless Internet access Swimming pool on site

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Five: Thursday, March 13 - All day hike in Wild Basin
Note: Trailhead elevation is 8,006 feet. Today's hike is from 5.4 miles to 9.8 miles with a maximum elevation gain/loss of 1,500 feet. Highest elevation gained is 10,000 feet.

Breakfast: Full Breakfast in the cafeteria

Morning: Today we hike to Mills Lake, named after Enos Mills - the main figure behind the creation of Rocky Mountain National Park. This is an excellent winter snowshoe trail to a spectacular peak-rimmed lake. Magnificent views abound. Depending on group ability and weather, it is possible that we will also snowshoe to The Loch for more breathtaking views.

Lunch: Picnic box lunch on trail

Afternoon: Return to our lodging after the completion of the daily snowshoe hike.

Dinner: Our dinner tonight will be in the cafeteria

Evening: Free for farewells, packing, relaxation

Lodging: YMCA of the Rockies

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Six: Friday, March 14 - Departures after breakfast, motel check-out 10 am...
Breakfast: Full Breakfast in the cafeteria

Morning: Independent departures after breakfast, end of program. Room check-out is 10:00 am.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
5 nights of accommodations
13 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners
6 Expert-led lectures
8 Field trips
8 Hands-on experiences

Ratings

4.8
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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