This was the best day of our trip and it's going to be mostly pictures, because I intend on adding a lot of them. I love photography, I've lived my entire life waiting for the invention of the digital camera, so that I can take pictures and share them with people in an instant, and not have to wait three days for Walgreens to develop the 27 pictures that may or may not have even turned out. Sometimes, I appreciate what a camera is able to help me do. There was a picture I posted for Wednesday, of Trinity
sitting on a rock, next to sign that says "please do not let your children play on the rock sculpture." My camera was conveniently able to leave out the fact that she was not anywhere near the rock sculpture, which is why the picture was hilarious.
That kind of outlook doesn't work at all in the mountains, where the tiny little box can never possibly show how amazing your entire surroundings are, and that's frustrating. Even a video camera can't capture it, for one reason... it can never duplicate the way it made you feel. And I guess, for that reason, it's just as well. Some things you see and do should be just for you.
We got to the park on a Gray Line tour bus. Expensive tours are something I generally frown on, but I could see no other way to get there without having a car. It got me there, and it let me walk around and climb on things and play with snow, but in a lot of ways it was a horrible tease. I wanted to leap out of the bus and hike so badly it was making me crazy. I've figured out that problem though. I have since discovered that you can take a free shuttle into the park from Estes Park, and I know how to get from the Denver airport to Estes Park.
...I could in theory hike in Rocky Mountain National Park
as a DAY TRIP. I can't imagine actually doing that, but maybe next time, I'll go to Estes Park instead of Denver. I could stay in the Stanley Hotel, the hotel that inspired The Shining, the book which inspired the movie, which was the scariest movie in human history (besides Event Horizon, but I can't stay in a spaceship, for christ sake). But let's be honest here, I would never stay in that hotel. I'm too afraid, also it's probably really expensive. I saw it from the street, though!
Inside the park, I'll let the pictures speak for themselves, I don't think I'll even add captions. The only other thing I want to write about is how the bus tour was the most terrifying ten hours of my life.
BUS. SPEEDING. CLIFF. I'm sure that even from the comforts of your home, you can't see how those three words go together. I trusted the driver, he said that he had driven this road hundreds of other times before, once in an ice storm. I also knew that they did not allow vehicles of any kind into the park when it was snowing, so I knew he knew what he was doing. Still, you generally only drive off a cliff once in your life. For a while, I was staring at the opposite wall or the floor near my feet and saying "oh god" a lot, but I stopped that, and forced myself to keep my eyes outside on the scenic side. It was terrifying, and I kept telling myself that if my mom were here, she'd be having a cardiac arrest, so I was totally fine with only my visions of flying off the mountainside.
Oh, and we saw elk, moose, prairie dogs and deer!