Greetings from the Rocky Mountain Adventure! We have had a great first few days on the water, building strong friendships in camp, and having the opportunity to explore the beautiful Rocky Mountain National Park. With our fishing skills sharper and our hiking legs stronger, we are looking forward to a great remainder of the trip.
After heading into the mountains together, we spent the first day-and-a-half building and refining casting, knot tying, and other essential fishing skills in the creeks around out first campsite. Although the late snowmelt made the fishing more challenging than anticipated, the boys found both success and confidence by catching brook and rainbow trout and putting many casts in great spots to catch fish. A couple of great dinners and some s'mores really rounded out the first two nights.
On Sunday, we strapped on some day packs and headed out on our first hike up to a high mountain lake. While the hike was not particularly long, it had a steep incline, and the thin mountain air made it even more challenging. Not deterred, our group climbed steadily to the top, and were rewarded with a great day of fishing and some spectacular views. Everyone successfully caught fish, including some "cutbows" and beautiful rainbow trout. On the return hike, we were treated to spectacular views of a number of snowcapped mountains.
Of the many highlights of the trip so far, the top has surely been out hike to Sky Pond, an alpine lake at 11,000 feet of elevation. This hike is strenuous and required some scrambling up rocks and over snow drifts. Given the difficulty, it was an optional addition to our original hike, and every camper decided to go, and they helped one another navigate the most challenging parts, and we were all rewarded with a view that is about as spectacular as I've seen and the chance to cast at many cutthroats. This hiking experience coupled with most of the boys landing an incredible greenback cutthroat trout made it a really amazing day. We are proud of the boys for completing the hike and working together to make ensure that everyone made it up and back down comfortably.
The first half of the Rocky Mountain Adventure has been great, and we are all looking forward to a great conclusion of the trip. In the days ahead we will do some service cleaning up and other tasks along the Colorado River, participating in a float trip with a local outfit, Cutthroat Anglers, and finally a great evening in the town of Silverthorne. It is sure to be a great time.