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ESTES PARK, COLORADO

Hiking Rocky Mountain National Park

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Walking/Hiking

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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
Daypack, water bottles, good broken-in hiking boots, rain gear, layers for wind and cold, recommended list attached.

Itinerary for Aug 31 — Sep 5, 2014

Expand all
Type: Motel

Description: All 48 rooms are non-smoking, and no pets. They are always exceptionally clean, comfortable, and a great value. We are an older property, recently remodeled and well-maintained. We have a nice heated outdoor pool.

Contact info:
927 Moraine Avenue, US Hwy 36W
Estes Park, CO 80517 USA
phone: 970-586-4585
web: www.alpinetrailridgeinn.com

Room amenities: Wireless internet connection, balconies on rooms

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call for availibility and prices

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day One: Sunday, August 31 - Safety Orientation/Introductions
Note: All of our 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: Arrival and motel check-in 3- 4:30 pm. Required orientation at 4:30 pm followed by dinner.

Dinner: Restaurant meal with several entree choices

Evening: Introductions, planning for the week

Lodging: Alpine Trail Ridge Inn

Meals Included: Dinner
Type: Motel

Description: All 48 rooms are non-smoking, and no pets. They are always exceptionally clean, comfortable, and a great value. We are an older property, recently remodeled and well-maintained. We have a nice heated outdoor pool.

Contact info:
927 Moraine Avenue, US Hwy 36W
Estes Park, CO 80517 USA
phone: 970-586-4585
web: www.alpinetrailridgeinn.com

Room amenities: Wireless internet connection, balconies on rooms

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call for availibility and prices

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Two: Monday, September 01 - Morning hike to Cub Lake in Moraine Park, afterno...
Note: Trailhead elevation is 8,250 feet. Today's hike is 5 miles round trip with a maximum elevation gain/loss of 540 feet. Highest elevation gained is 8,800 feet.

Breakfast: Restaurant meal with menu choices

Morning: The trail to Cub Lake begins at the west end of Moraine Park, and has a reputation for being a good trail for viewing wildlife, including elk, ducks, and songbirds. Cub Lake is covered with pond lilies in the summer and affords a nice view to Stones Peak. This is a great first day-warm up hike in Rocky Mountain National Park!

Lunch: Picnic box lunch on trail

Afternoon: Continue short hikes in the Bear Lake area, stop at visitor's center

Dinner: Tonight we dine at a restaurant in Estes Park

Evening: Free for reflection, relaxation

Lodging: Alpine Trail Ridge Inn

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Motel

Description: All 48 rooms are non-smoking, and no pets. They are always exceptionally clean, comfortable, and a great value. We are an older property, recently remodeled and well-maintained. We have a nice heated outdoor pool.

Contact info:
927 Moraine Avenue, US Hwy 36W
Estes Park, CO 80517 USA
phone: 970-586-4585
web: www.alpinetrailridgeinn.com

Room amenities: Wireless internet connection, balconies on rooms

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call for availibility and prices

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Three: Tuesday, September 02 - All day hike to Loch Vale and Glacier Gorge
Note: Trailhead elevation is 9,275 feet. Today's hike is 5 to 10 miles round trip depending upon options with a maximum elevation gain/loss of 1,720 feet. Highest elevation gained is 10,500 feet.

Breakfast: Restaurant meal with menu choices

Morning: Loch Vale-Glacier Basin is one of the most beautiful and most popular hikes in the park. We’ll start at the Bear Lake trailhead, unless we find a place to park at Glacier Gorge. Bear Lake is 9475 ft. elevation. We will first see Alberta falls; the most photographed falls in the park. It was named after Abner Sprague’s wife. Sprague was an Estes Park pioneer. Loch was named after a guest in Sprague’s lodge named Locke. It was changed to Loch, the Scottish name for lake. Loch Vale is a crystal clear alpine lake. The broad cliff at the Loch is Cathedral Wall, a favorite for rock climbers. We’ll eat lunch at the lake and continue toward Andrew’s glacier if the group is up to 1.3 miles more. We also have the option of seeing Mills Lake on our return (.6 miles) The trail is good, but we gain 990 ft from Glacier Gorge to the Loch. (3.1 miles one way to Loch Vale)

Lunch: Picnic box lunch on trail

Afternoon: Continue morning hike, stop at Beaver Meadow's Visitor's Center before returning to motel.

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

Evening: Free for reflection, relaxation

Lodging: Alpine Trail Ridge Inn

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Type: Motel

Description: All 48 rooms are non-smoking, and no pets. They are always exceptionally clean, comfortable, and a great value. We are an older property, recently remodeled and well-maintained. We have a nice heated outdoor pool.

Contact info:
927 Moraine Avenue, US Hwy 36W
Estes Park, CO 80517 USA
phone: 970-586-4585
web: www.alpinetrailridgeinn.com

Room amenities: Wireless internet connection, balconies on rooms

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call for availibility and prices

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Four: Wednesday, September 03 - Over the top-Trail Ridge Road
Note: Activity Notes We will travel by van over the highest Federal Highway in the U.S.: Trail Ridge Road. Morning hike, Ute Trail, 3 miles, elevation gain 800 feet, highest elevation, 12,150 feet. Afternoon several short interpretive hikes to viewpoints along highway.

Breakfast: Restaurant meal with menu choices

Morning: Today you will travel on Trail Ridge Road, the highest continuous highway in the U.S. We will start in the Montane ecosystem, below 9,000 ft, travel to the Subalpine, 9,000-11,400 ft, and end up in the Alpine ecosystem above 11,400 ft. We’ll drive to the Ute Trail and hike for several hours. This is an out and back hike. You’ll experience the beauty of the alpine tundra and beautiful views. It’s important to stay on the trail because plants are very fragile in this harsh environment. We’ll get back in the van and drive to the Alpine Visitor center. It’s a great place to look at the views, shop in the gift shop and eat lunch outside.

Lunch: Picnic box lunch on trail

Afternoon: On our way back we’ll take a short hike at high altitude on the tundra trailhead. Hopefully, we’ll see herds of elk along the road. We will look for moose and more elk in the Kawuneeche Valley. If there is interest we’ll stop by the Alluvial Fan. In 1982 a dam broke and washed down rocky debris creating alluvial fan. Return to motel

Dinner: Tonight we dine at a restaurant in Estes Park

Evening: Free for reflection, relaxation

Lodging: Alpine Trail Ridge Inn

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Motel

Description: All 48 rooms are non-smoking, and no pets. They are always exceptionally clean, comfortable, and a great value. We are an older property, recently remodeled and well-maintained. We have a nice heated outdoor pool.

Contact info:
927 Moraine Avenue, US Hwy 36W
Estes Park, CO 80517 USA
phone: 970-586-4585
web: www.alpinetrailridgeinn.com

Room amenities: Wireless internet connection, balconies on rooms

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call for availibility and prices

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Five: Thursday, September 04 - 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: Restaurant meal with menu choices

Morning: Our hike today will start in Wild Basin, a trailhead in the park that is close to Highlands. The elevation at the trailhead is 8,566 feet. This will be a day to enjoy beautiful 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, 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 (right) and Long’s Peak (left) At 2.7 miles Ouzel Falls is on the left. It is named after a little grey bird that is about the size of a robin that dips its head in the stream and dives for insects. It’s also called a dipper. The elevation of Ouzel Falls is 9,516. If the group is up to a longer hike, we will hike to Ouzel Lake (4.9 miles from the trailhead, elevation gain of 1,510 feet) .

Lunch: Picnic box lunch on trail

Afternoon: Continue morning hike, return to motel in late afternoon.

Dinner: Closing dinner at a historic restaurant

Evening: Free for farewells, packing, relaxation

Lodging: Alpine Trail Ridge Inn

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Six: Friday, September 05 - Departures after breakfast, motel check-out 10 am...
Breakfast: Restaurant meal with menu choices

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.
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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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