Friday, September 26, 2008

Sprague Lake at Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Sprague Lake is on Bear Lake Road, about a mile before Bear Lake. On this particular day, we were on our way to the Bear Lake area, but since this was early on a Fall Sunday the parking lot was full. Bear Lake is a very popular area for tourists because there are several trailheads there, including the most popular one in Rocky Mountain National Park - The Bear Lake Trailhead.

We had never stopped at Sprague Lake on any of our previous park visits, so we decided to check it out.

Sprague Lake, at an elevation of 8,200 feet, is a very pretty place. At 13 acres, the lake is fairly large considering the elevation. It is crystal clear and shallow. Trout can be spotted easily.

The walk around the lake is a little less than a mile.

Sprague Lague was named for Abner Sprague, who owned and operated a lodge here from 1910 to 1940. Sprague created the lake by damming up a small stream. Signs around the lake describe a little of what the lake looked like when it was a private resort. Sprague was proud that his guests left refreshed and rested, unlike those tourists who buzz around from place to place in a hurry, truly enjoying little of what they see, and then arriving home more exhausted than when they left.

We didn't see a lot of wildlife at the lake, except chipmunks and ducks.

After walking around the lake, we took a path to the right. It soon became apparent that we were walking on an animal trail, probably beaten down by deer and elk. We found a very peaceful place by a stream and sat down. The only sounds were heard was the water. A squirrel decided to check us out. He ran up and down the stream, stopping numerous times just in front of us. I'd focus my camera, then he'd be gone - every time.

For information on Estes Park, the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park visit:

Estes Park

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