As much as I want to travel to other parts of the world, I have to remind myself that there are a ton of beautiful sites to see in my home state of Colorado.
ℝ𝕠𝕔𝕜𝕪 𝕄𝕠𝕦𝕟𝕥𝕒𝕚𝕟 ℕ𝕒𝕥𝕚𝕠𝕟𝕒𝕝 ℙ𝕒𝕣𝕜 is one of my favorite places to go and and offers many hiking trails across their 265,000 acres. There is a lot of wildlife around the area and commonly sited mammals include moose, elk, big horned sheet, black bear, marmot, and a boat load of friendly chipmunks.
One of my favorite hikes to date is the trail to Odessa Lake. You can either start this hike from 🄱🄴🄰🅁 🄻🄰🄺🄴 🅃🅁🄰🄸🄻🄷🄴🄰🄳 OR 🄵🄴🅁🄽 🄻🄰🄺🄴 🅃🅁🄰🄸🄻🄷🄴🄰🄳. You can also incorporate both. Therefore, hiking to Odessa is a dynamic trail as you can start at one trailhead and end at the other, visa versa, or go in a huge loop. We chose to start at Bear Lake Trailhead and hike down to Fern Lake Trailhead. From there, you can hop on one of the free shuttles to get back to your original starting point. This was about a 9 mile roundtrip length hike.
For the first couple miles on the trail, you will reach a couple forks. You will just need to follow the signs towards Odessa Lake. I remember that the first mile or so gained quite a bit of elevation and my calves were burning! This was the most intense elevation gain of the hike and the rest seemed like smooth sailing.
When you get a few miles into the hike, you will arrive at another junction that will take you down to 𝕃𝕒𝕜𝕖 ℍ𝕖𝕝𝕖𝕟𝕖. We decided to stop down by this lake to cross it off our list. If you don’t wish to go to Lake Helene, then just pass the junction to keep heading to Odessa.
Around this point, you will start heading downwards into 𝕆𝕕𝕖𝕤𝕤𝕒 𝔾𝕠𝕣𝕘𝕖 as the lake is sitting 500 feet down into the valley. (If you chose to hike back on this path to the trailhead, it would be a lot of uphill climbing that I would imagine would get quite tiring). As you keep going downward into the valley, you will pass the lake before you reach a side trail that takes you right up to it. As you are approaching the lake, you will see a nice view of 𝕃𝕚𝕥𝕥𝕝𝕖 𝕄𝕒𝕥𝕥𝕖𝕣𝕙𝕠𝕣𝕟 which is pictured below.
You are able to fish Odessa Lake and that is something Kyle and I tried. I didn’t catch any fish in the lake and it was freezing cold. But I did catch my first cutthroat in the little river leading into the lake. Yay for firsts!
Please visit this site to get more information on this hike