Escape from Estes Park via Trail Ridge Road


When I awoke Thursday morning at 3:30am, I got out of bed, rather than lie there trying to get back to sleep and looked through photographs I had taken the previous day.  At day break, I looked out the window at the Thompson River raging next to the resort we stayed at.  As you can see from a photo I took minutes before we escaped, the river had taken over the pool and hot tub.  After calling the front desk a couple of times with my concerns with the rising water, they called our room and said we were in pre-evacuation mode…be ready.  My friend Gina and I made the decision to “get the heck out of there”, rather than wait until it was too late to leave!  So we packed the car in the rain and drove to the road/bridge pictured in the photo below.  By this point there was a yellow “do not cross” tape blocking the way and I asked the resort manager (who was sitting in a golf cart by the  bridge) if we could cross at our own risk.  He said “no” and told us where the only other road out of the resort was located.  I drove over there and headed to Trail Ridge Road into the Rocky Mountain National Park.  One section of a road had a couple of inches of water running across a 12 foot wide section.  I made the decision to drive across it.

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Trail Ridge Road was beautiful!  It took less than an hour and one-half to get to Grand Lake, where we stayed for the evening.  We stopped a few times for photo opportunities.  The wind blew our umbrella into the upside down position, which made for a cute photo.  And the rainbow just added that bit of magic!

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The sun came out!  We stopped for a 5 minute break and discovered this beautiful small lake set off of the road.

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The scenery was breathtaking…

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I can’t wait to show you photographs from Grand Lake!  It is absolutely stunning!

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We realize that people have died from the flooding, homes have been ruined, and lives changed forever because of this terrible flooding.  We also feel lucky that we were able to escape and have fun on our vacation in spite of everything.

31 thoughts on “Escape from Estes Park via Trail Ridge Road

  1. Pingback: Hot Sulphur Springs Resort via Grand Lake, Colorado | Fabulous 50's

  2. Pingback: Grand Lake, Colorado is the best kept secret in Colorado! | Fabulous 50's

  3. Your pictures are stunning! I remember another time it flooded right by where you were staying, about in 1976 — I was there the year after and saw a lot of the news footage, books and articles from the Thompson River flood. It can be devastating — I’m glad you got out of harm’s way when you did and are enjoying yourselves!

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  4. I was worried about you when I watched the news yesterday & then I was relieved when I read your post last night. Thank-you for updating us! You always find the silver lining in the cloud……so happy that you looked at this as an adventure. When life gives you lemons….you must make limoncello! Be safe & continue to have FUN!!!

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  5. Beautiful pictures Sherry. I was born and raised in Boulder and have spent many happy times hiking etc in those areas. You really captured the beauty. Were you staying at the Eagles Nest Resort in Estes? Glad you made it out safely and that despite the weather you were able to enjoy Colorado.

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  6. Sometimes I just glance at your blog and sometimes I read it over and over. I’ve especially liked the Colorado trip entries, from the detailed planning to this latest. The addition of your photos is always a special treat. I wish I was traveling with you, but please don’t stop. Through you, I am able to see the world, even from the driver’s seat of my NC school bus.

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