Alluvial Fan and hiking

Rocky Mountain National Park Travel Blog

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Alluvial fan - bigger than it looks from above!

We stopped at the alluvial fan - being a geologist, I HAD to see it!  We could see it from overlooks higher up in the park, but when you actually get to it, its HUGE!  There are boulders as large as cars that were washed down in the flood of 1982.  I've seen smaller scale alluvial fans, where the largest particles were sand or small gravel, but never anything this huge.  People were crawling all over it.  It was like a giant playground for adults (and children) that like to climb on rocks.  The Roaring River still flows through the fan, with waterfalls in some areas, but it doesn't look like it is "roaring". 

After the fan, we went to Bear Lake, but didn't walk around the lake because we've all done it before.  We did hike (walk) around Sprague Lake.  I think I liked Sprague Lake better - its a little less touristy, but just as scenic.  I didn't realize the lake was so shallow - but there were many fly fishers out there in ankle deep water in the middle of the lake!

The final stop of the day was a short hike to Alberta Falls.  It was a pretty gentle trail with lots of people hiking in sandals (including me).

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Alluvial fan - bigger than it look…
Alluvial fan - bigger than it loo…
Alluvial Fan
Alluvial Fan
how the fan formed - a flood from …
how the fan formed - a flood from…
The fan from across the valley
The fan from across the valley
Roaring River flowing through the …
Roaring River flowing through the…
Roaring River flowing through the …
Roaring River flowing through the…
Fly fishermen (and women)
Fly fishermen (and women)
Rocky Mountain National Park
photo by: MarcMokum