Saturday, March 4, 2023

Snowshoeing Lake Isabelle - Winter 2023


Tim and I went on a snowshoe up to one of our favorite local winter spots.  The Brainard Lake portal is closed in winter so you have to park a few miles away at the Gateway Trail.  I'd done this same hike about a decade ago, but I'd forgotten how far it was.  I was thinking about 8 miles round trip, but with the whole thing including a few detours, we ended up snowshoeing over 13 miles or something like that.  I always like hiking with Tim as he, being an electrical engineer, naturally takes detailed stats of our hikes including time spent hiking, average pace, distance traveled, calories burned, and years added to our lives due to exercise.  

Sunrise on the Indian Peaks on the drive in

Brainard Lake

The hike to Brainard is all on a snow packed road and pretty eventless.   Once we reached Brainard we decided to skip Isabelle and go hike up a ridge and hike a 12er called Niwot Ridge.  It didn't look too far from where we were anyway.  So we left the trail around Long Lake and started ascending up the hill. Soon the trail disappeared and we started trudging through thick powder.  Woah!  This was taking a lot of time and energy.  Oh also I forgot to mention that I forgot ALL my food.  I left it in the fridge back at home.  Tim is such an amazing guy that he just shared his rations with me throughout the day.  So as we're halfway up the hill toward the ridge, we realized we didn't have enough food or energy or time to attempt this summit.  We'd bitten off more than we could chew.  See what I did there?  Back to plan A... head to Lake Isabelle.  No problem there.  This is one of the most scenic lakes in the Indian Peaks wilderness and a worthy destination.   

Post holing

Lake Isabelle - Prints Available


There were a number of parties that day that brought ice fishing equipment up there.  One of the groups made it as far as Long Lake and were actually catching some trout.  That is definitely being added to my to-do list in the future!

Sunday, January 22, 2023

New Painting - Indian Peaks Wilderness

Painting Indian peaks wilderness colorado lake isabelle art

Just finished a brand new painting titled "Indian Peaks Wilderness".  Boy does it feel good to finish a painting that takes so long to complete!  This one is of a sunrise scene I capture years ago at Lake Isabelle in the front range of Colorado.  I remember this morning well.  It was very cold and windy and overcast.  Daryl and I woke up and hiked here way before dawn and were sure the clouds would block the sun from hitting the mountains for sunrise.  To our surprise, they lifted just as the sun came up and illuminated the peaks with a bright orange.  It was breathtaking!  

Below are some progress photos and the actual photo of the reference shot used to make this artwork:

Reference photograph of the scene

Saturday, October 8, 2022

Fall Colors Photography Trip 2022

Photography of Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, CO

This year our church family celebrated the opening of our new auditorium during the prime fall colors season.  We decided to be a part of that instead of taking a fall colors photography trip.  We did, however get out for one clear morning.  I took off a day of school (and pulled KD out as well) mid-week to head up to Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park to shoot the sunrise.  A good friend Janice joined us too.  The colors lit up the scene and then the clouds lifted and the wind calmed to make a crystal clear mirrored image.  We later took a quick hike up to a little hidden gem then had breakfast at a local diner.  We had a great time!


Sunrise over Sprague Lake RMNP Autumn Fall Mountains Landscape
Sunrise over Sprague Lake Panorama

 Here are a few shots that my daughter took.  She's getting pretty good with her Nikon!

Mirrored Sprague


 Little did we know that our best shot of the day would come on the drive home.  We looked out the window along the road and had to pull over as a scene was developing right before our eyes. The clouds rolled in and it began to snow directly over Longs Peak while the sun came out and lit up the foreground of aspen trees. WOW! 

Longs Peak Aspens fall autumn Rocky Mountain National Park Colorado landscape 14ers  snow
Longs Peak drama