A Near-Elk Experience

On the east side of Rocky Mountain National Park are two small mountain lakes that are worth visiting. Sprague Lake and Bear Lake both have short trails around them and are a great opportunity to spot wildlife. They’re located near the Glacier Basin campground.

 

Sprague Lake

Sprague Lake sits on the former property of a lodge that existed there from 1910 to 1940. It was owned by Abner Sprague, an expert guide. The shallow lake has a half-mile trail around it and offers opportunities for fishing. There are also great views of the some of the park’s peaks and glaciers in the background.

Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Sprague Lake

I had an incredible up-close and personal encounter with some elk that crossed my path at Sprague Lake. I was able to capture a few photos of the special moment.

Elk at Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

This elk walked right past me!

Elk at Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

The elk continued into the lake

Elk at Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Elk

Elk at Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Another elk along the trail

 

Bear Lake

Bear Lake is the other lake in the area and sits at an elevation of 9,475 feet. It has a more difficult trail with steep grades at certain points. Some accessible parts near the trailhead take you to excellent overlooks of the lake.

Bear Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Bear Lake

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