Category Archives: RMNP Back Country

Cub Lake Trail In Rocky Mountain National Park Is Spectacular With Views And Wildflowers!


Cub Lake Trail has always been one of my favorite hikes. There is just so much diversity! Every time we go there there is something new to see.

This spring/summer is incredible! The views with the snowy mountains in the background and the array of different wildflowers takes your breath away. It is just so gorgeous!

You can hike part of the way or all of the way to Cub Lake…or even do the Cub Lake-Fern Lake Loop. They are all spectacular!

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Old Hidden Fireplace Right Off TheTrail At Lily Lake In RMNP


Phil and I have walked around Lily Lake hundreds of times in the past few years. We usually take the old dirt road to the left of the parking lot because the meadows down there are filled with beautiful wildflowers. It’s a bit off the beaten path, so it’s more secluded.

The other day we were walking around Lily Lake and I happened to look up into the woods right before the trail breaks off to go to Estes Cone to the left and Lily Lake to the right. About 10 yards away in the woods I saw this old fireplace. It wasn’t even that deep in the trees. I can’t believe we had never seen it before!

We took a few pictures and I figured I’d do a little research when I got home to find out what once stood there. Maybe an old lodge? Or someone’s home?

After looking online I couldn’t find any information. Does anyone out there know anything about this old fireplace? It would be fun to know what  was once there.

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Delicate Little Fairy Slipper By The Stream In The Woods In Rocky Mountain National Park


One of my favorite wildflowers is the Fairy Slipper. I used to see them back east so it is a big treat to see them out here too.

The Fairy Slipper grows from a bulb to be about 5″ tall and has but one leaf and one flower. It loves to grow in moist areas, especially forests. It is a beautiful and endangered species.

The flower is pink with 5 small petals above the “slipper.” I think it is just exquisite!

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There Are A Lot of Perfect Photo Ops In Rocky Mountain National Park!


Phil and I were out hiking on one of our favorite trails the other day and were astounded at how many gorgeous wildflowers there were already blooming. The rain and snow in April and May must have watered them pretty well. They were just spectacular!

I remember this same photo-op spot last fall when the mountains had just gotten snow and the grasses were all a golden color. We thought it was so pretty then.

But these fields and fields of wildflowers (Yellow Banner, Larkspur and more) just took our breath away. I bet I spent more time on the ground taking pictures than hiking! Ha!

I thought it would be fun to take the same picture of Phil but with “summer” in the background instead of fall. You can see the Mummy Range  is still pretty covered with snow. No matter where you go in Rocky Mountain National Park it sure is beautiful!


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Golden Banner Is Everywhere In Estes Park And RMNP And The Elk Don’t Like It!


One of the prettiest flowers that grows out here in the mountains is called Golden Banner or Mountain Golden Pea. I’ve even heard it called Yellow Banner or Wild Banner. It’s one of the first springtime flowers and will grow through August.

The Golden Banner grow in short, crowded clusters, whorled on the stem. They look very much like a bright-yellow pea-like flower. They grow in huge clumps and can be seen along the sides of the road and throughout the hillsides.

The good part about them is that the elk and deer do not like them, so you don’t have to worry that they will be eaten. They give the animals a very upset stomach and they learn very early in life not to go near them.

When the flowers are ready to seed they form flattened pods filled with seeds. These curve in a semi-circle and point downward. Slowly they open up and the seeds fall out. This is the perfect time to harvest them if you want to have some in your yard.

We were out on a hike  in Rocky Mountain National Park the other day and saw fields and fields of Yellow Banner. It was just spectacular! I liked this photograph with the log as the background. They are such a pretty wildflower!

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