We decided almost as soon as we moved here that we needed to do the same hike to Saint Mary’s glacier on the anniversary of our engagement, so today had definitely been in the works for months. Just a couple of weeks ago we even made a new addition to our hiking repertoire in anticipation of this hike. We purchased a Columbia backpack cooler to carry our picnic in today, and I’m sure for many picnic hikes to come. We knew based on prior experience that the parking situation was a little slim at this trail head, so we knew we had to set out early. Also, as a word of caution, there is a $5 fee for the parking, so we made sure to stop at an ATM on our way out. It only takes approximately an hour from our place in Highlands Ranch to get here, and the drive seems to go by really quickly. I guess it’s all the traffic in Denver that makes it feel so smooth. We arrived around 11am, which was definitely after we wanted to, and the parking lot was already full with cars circling like sharks for any spot that opened up. This wasn’t our first rodeo, and we just stopped in the circle drive until someone was leaving, instead of continuing to make the circle of insanity. It only took us about 5 minutes to find a spot, so we counted ourselves lucky. Seems to be the theme lately, and I’ll definitely take it.
With the cooler backpack in tow and Carly carrying the water and picnic blanket with her backpack, we set out on our anniversary journey.
I have to say, there were much less nerves this time carrying a picnic as compared to a year ago carrying the engagement ring. As we started out, it became clear very quickly, that we were much more acclimated to the altitude and the hiking than we were a year ago too. We powered our way up the hike, which is fairly steep for how short of a hike it is, only taking a couple breaks to catch our breath. Last year, it was every hundred feet or so!
The feeling when we made it to the lake was just as exhilarating though. We found the spot where the magic happened last year, which looked just like we remembered; however, there were a few people sitting on our rock (yes, it’s OUR rock now!), so we made our way around the lake a bit in search of the perfect picnic spot. The spot we found was serene and peaceful, and even though there were a lot of people around the lake, we felt alone in our one little world. I was starving by the time we made it to the top, so we laid out the picnic blanket, and I promptly retrieved my turkey sandwich to start eating.
The day could not have been any more beautiful, with a few fluffy, white clouds floating lazily across the sky, which provided just enough cooling time to make the sunshine enjoyable when they floated on their way.
The relaxing sensation is a familiar one lately, with the couple of picnics that we’ve taken, and it’s something we plan to continue doing to take full advantage of the beautiful countryside that is our home now.