Tuesday, September 3, 2013
North Park Colorado: An Old Land
North Park Colorado: An Old Land]
North Park Colorado is a high, sparsely populated basin (approximately 8800 ft in elevation) in the Rocky Mountains in north central Colorado in the United States. It encompasses a wide valley in Jackson County rimmed by mountain ranges at the headwaters of the North Platte River and several smaller tributaries, including the Michigan River, Illinois River, and Canadian River. The valley receives its name from being the northernmost of the three large mountain valleys (or parks) in Colorado on the western side of the Front Range. The others are Middle Park and South Park respectively.
The basin opens out northward into Wyoming, in the direction of flow of the North Platte. On the east side, it is rimmed by the Medicine Bow Mountains, the Never Summer Mountains and Rabbit Ears Range to the south, and the Park Range to the west. The continental divide rims the Park along the south and west. North Park is as close to the plains of the Pleistocene as a modern human is as likely to get in this century. The basin is covered with glacial u-shaped valleys and moraines of every type. Glacial kettle lakes that have filled and spread from the internal drainage into wildlife habitats and human water sources. Ground water pools refreshed each year and providing lush meadows for grazing and haying. All are surround by mountains of 2000 feet or more in relief.
Here I spent three days this Summer in quite and solitude in the central and western parts of the park. Here I took photographs.