Lunch in Grand Lake? Kristel agreed but I didn't say how we were getting there. Finally, I made the Bear Lake to Grand Lake run across RMNP. My first time on these trails, and they were amazing!
The route started from the popular Bear Lake trailhead up to Flattop Mountain on the Continental Divide and then down the Tonahutu Trail to Grand Lake (19ish miles out). After scarfing down some delicious grub from the Dairy King, we escaped the busy tourist town and made our way back up the North Inlet Trail for a return to Flattop and eventually back to our starting point at Bear Lake (18ish miles back). I had hoped to drop down into the Glacier Gorge from somewhere near Andrews Pass and come back to Bear Lake from a different trail, but dwindling daylight and only one headlamp between the two of us foiled that plan.
A few more people on these trails than I typically like, especially near the trailheads, but that was expected on this Labor Day weekend. Otherwise, I loved this loop! A great way to do lunch!
|Morning departure from Bear Lake.|
|The view toward Glacier Gorge Basin on the climb to Flattop.|
|Leaving Flattop headed to Tonahutu.|
|A burn area along the Tonahutu Trail.|
|On the CDT entering Grand Lake.|
|The only place without a huge wait, but it was delicious!|
|One of many gorgeous waterfalls along the North Inlet Trail.|
|The Sharkstooth from near Andrews Pass.|