Ouzel Lake (and Chickadee Pond and Ouzel Falls, Calypso Cascade, Copeland Falls) Sept 4 2011

Bob & Sue & Dave & Patty hiked to Ouzel Lake (and Chickadee Pond) in Rocky Mountain National Park in the Wild Basin area.

Along the way we went past Copeland Falls, gorgeous Calypso Cascade, and beautiful Ouzel Falls.

Day totals - 10.3 miles round-trip, about 1570 feet of elevation gain, 5.5 hours.

Click on a thumbnail photo for medium-resolution, click again for full-size.

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  Wild Basin trailhead This is a popular area so lots of informative signs, educational. Start of the trail up. We're heading to Ouzel Lake, 4.9 miles. Lower Copeland Falls through the trees.

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  Lower Copeland Falls. Bob at Lower Copeland Falls. Bob, Patty, Dave at Upper Copeland Falls. Upper Copeland Falls from the side - the mist and spray is gorgeous. Crossing the stream on a bridge, looking upstream - numerous small unnamed falls along the trail.

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  looking downstream. About 1/3 of the way to Ouzel Lake. Calypso Cascades. Stunning. Lots of info for fisherman (and there are a lot of folks who come here to fish). Ouzel Falls, notice the upper falls on the right.

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  Ouzel Falls, closer in Patty, Dave, Bob at an overlook. Trail splits for Ouzel & Bluebird lakes, versus Thunder Lake. More than halfway now! We're walking through an area that was burned in 1978, walking along a ridge line. Looking left. The trail is level for close to a mile here and sunny without the tree cover.

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  Looking right. Purple and yellow wildflowers. Final trail split for Ouzel Lake. Nearly there! Dave & Patty. Mount Copeland in the background. Nature renews - tons of wildflowers in the burned out areas.

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  Tiny raspberries too! Trail is right beside the stream now (from Ouzel Lake outlet).

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  WOW Ouzel Lake is gorgeous. Water is shallow and crystal clear. Notice fisherman on far side. Ouzel Lake looking south. Ouzel Lake looking south-west. Dave suns on the rock, Patty chooses shade below. Short sunbathe only, lunch calls.

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  Right before Ouzel Lake, you can turn right at this sign to get to Chickadee Pond - go right of the campsite and continue on the faint trail another 100 feet or so. Chickadee pond. Chickadee pond - a pretty pond covered with water lilies. Heading back along the ridge, another large burned out area in the distance. Huge log across the trail, otherwise the trail is very well maintained.

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  Dave got a rock inside his shoe - a big one and sharp too! Calypso Cascades again on the hike down. Just gorgeous. Zoomed in of the top, lots of mist and spray. Lots more small but pretty unnamed falls along the trail. Froth and spray.

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  Trail runs alongside this for a ways, just beautiful. Looking back up the trail, it's steep (because the stream falls steeply), very well maintained. Wildlife :-) Wildflowers everywhere. Blue bells?

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