Friday, August 12, 2011

Hanging Lake

Yesterday we walked to the Hanging Lakes.  We've done alot of exploring on this vacation and have seen alot of cool things but personally I've got to say that Hanging Lakes was my second favorite adventure of the whole trip.  My first would be the crazy Whitewater Rafting trip, but a very close second would have to be our hike up to Hanging Lakes.  A fellow hiker mentioned that National Geographic voted this trail one of the top ten hiking trails in the whole country.  We couldn't verify that on Google, but I'd put down money that it is certainly among the top trails.  We certainly had to work at it, but I've got to say, for views like this, it's hard to complain about the walk up.

The trail is just under 1.5 miles up and signs warn that it is a very difficult climb, and to bring plenty of water.  Ryan and I were skeptics, but the trail certainly proved us wrong.  It took us about an hour to climb to the very tippy top of the trail but it was soooo worth it.  Trust me guys, this was the kind of hike that would make you want to quit your jobs and move to Colorado just to be able to experience this type of scenery every single day (if not weekend for those of us that have to work to pay the bills).

Here is a picture to give you an idea of the terrain that we climbed to get to the Hanging Lakes.  Behind Ryan and I you will see a steep rocky slope, we basically climbed stuff like that for 1.5 miles all the way to the top.

The hike was tough, but it was totally totally worth it when you got to the top.  Once you reached the summit, you had two choices: go to Hanging Lakes, or climb just a tiny bit farther to Spouting Rocks.  Ryan and I were on a mission (what else is new) so we accented to the Spouting Rocks and let me just say, we were not disappointed!!!

It is very hard to describe or even capture the true awesomeness of these falls, it was truly breathtaking.  Mom said that when they came up here four years earlier the larger of the two falls wasn't even flowing.  I felt very fortunate to get to experience the awesomeness of nature that was displayed here.  Seriously guys, if I haven't conveyed it, this was one of the most awesome hikes I've ever done.  If you are ever in the area you've got to make the trip out to see this trail!!!

Above is a great picture of the actual Hanging Lake.  So, to give you some perspective, the waterfalls that I posted above were just about this area where Joey and Andy are standing.  Then, you can see that there is a second waterfall that comes into the Hanging Lake.  This lake is cool for two reasons, the first is that it is truly suspended here on top of the mountain and then flows down in smaller rivers down the side of the mountain (where we hiked).  The second is the color of the lake. The picture above does a pretty good job of showing the aqua marine color of the water, but basically there is some mineral in the water that turns it this awesome greeny blue color.  It seriously looks like it could be right in the middle of the Caribbean.

For more professional pictures of the Hanging Lakes check out this website.

We had a great time on this adventure, and as I've said, it was one of my favorite from our trip out here.  Here are a few final pictures to cap her off.  Enjoy!!

P.S.  Ryan and I are moving here and never coming back!!!  Visit us!!!

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