The trail is about 2.5 miles to the lake. The first half of the trail looks like this, pretty easy, but steadily climbing.
Looking back at the mountains north of us, around the Imogene Pass area.
I had read this was one of the best wild flower hikes, but I had no idea there were so many waterfalls. Water is literally coming down all over the place in the basins up here and all of the water eventually meets up with Bridal Veil Falls. My videos actually turned out better than my waterfall pictures, so I have placed some of them at the end.
The trail gets steeper and the rocks get larger the higher up you go. La Junta Peak is peaking up here. Thank goodness we brought our hiking poles. We used them most of the way up and really needed them on the way down. They take a lot of pressure off of the knees.
Old mining home in front of La Junta Peak, elevation 13,470 feet.
Endless green vegetation and wild flowers way above the tree line.
I was about to give up on that lake actually being up there at this point. It was obvious we were close, though.
Hiking through snow in July! There is a private home near here and we saw the bulldozer that had plowed through this part of the trail.
Finally we saw Blue Lake!!! It's actually private property and I'm not sure how close to it you're even allowed to be. You can't get in it anyway since you'd likely become hypothermic within seconds.
I was facing north when I took this while we sat on the rocks eating some Zone bars and almonds.
I did go ahead and get a little closer to the lake. I couldn't resist.
Almost touching the sky!
I've never seen butterflies like this before. They are blue male coppers and they are "mud-puddling."
Getting a really early start is the smartest thing to do on a hike. We were unable to start very early because of Jay's part-time job, so we did get caught in an afternoon thunderstorm and got hailed on. The hail was tiny, but painful. I even had hail hit my eyeball, so I put on my sunglasses and we started to hike back down quickly due to the lightening. You don't want to be above the tree line while it's lightening. I'm not comfortable being out when it's lightening even when we are in town. This is some of the hail that had piled up on the side of the trail.