If you’ve been following my trip in Colorado, then you’ll remember my friend Gina and I narrowly escaped the flooding in Estes Park by driving over Trail Ridge Road in the Rocky Mountain National Park to Grand Lake, Colorado. Originally we had reservations through Airbnb at a home in Boulder following two nights in Estes Park. I contacted the owner and requested a refund. He wanted to wait and see if the weather improved before issuing the refund. Anyway, we stopped a few times to take photographs and arrived in Grand Lake a couple of hours later. We didn’t have a firm plan of where we would end up for the night, but fortunately the weather was much better at Grand Lake. I saw a sign that said Grand Lake Lodge, historic landmark, so we stopped to check it out. After some haggling with the General Manager over price, we rented a small cabin that was quite rustic. The view from our cabin was unbelievable!
Looking to the left…
And to the right…
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.
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!