Stop #27: Rocky Mountains National Park (Bear Lake & Estes Park)

The next day we had to wake up at 4: 30 to have enough time to pack up our things and enter the park before 6. The only part of Rocky Mountain National park we hadn’t seen was the Bear Lake area. Before going there my dad did some fishing because fish are very active at dawn. After fishing we walked Bear Lake Loop.

It was chilly outside and the sky was gray.Not the best time to see a lake, but the lake was still pretty because of the mountains behind it. Bear Lake is an alpine lake, at an elevation of 9,450 feet. On Bear Lake loop we saw a lot of chipmunks that would run right up to us.

They stood on their hind legs and looked up at us, waiting for food. Those chipmunks were fed by people, which is illegal. Feeding wildlife is illegal in National Parks for multiple reasons. Listed below are a few.

  1. When wild animals are fed by humans, they lose their fear of them. This is dangerous for both animals and people, because animals might become aggressive and bite.
  2. Human food is not healthy for wild animals, and can kill them.
  3. Wild animals can become dependent on humans for food, and may lose their ability to survive on their own.
  4. Animals can catch diseases from human hands. They can die from bacteria transferred from your hands that has no ill effect on you. They can react badly to your perfume, shower gel and insect repellent. Bug spray is toxic to many animals and you might kill them.

But many people still feed animals!

After Bear Lake loop we drove to Estes Park. We stopped to look at the hotel Stanley Hotel, where Stephen King once stayed. We learned that after staying in that hotel, Stephen King was inspired to write his famous Shining novel. The hotel was also featured in one of the movies after that book.

After a visit in 1974, Stephen King used the Stanley Hotel as inspiration for The Shining. Photo via Wikimedia Commons

In Estes Park we went to some souvenir shops and stopped to get some snacks. There was also a town square of some sort with grass where a coupe of elk families where grazing. I wonder how they got there, the town square is surrounded by roads!

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