© Brad Mangas

Another small story associated with this shot. I had just finished hiking a trail in the Horseranch Park area of the West Elks and for this low altitude Kansas boy it was a workout. I had gotten back to the trail head and found a photo workshop taking place. Just a few participants and the leader and their assistant said hi and asked how my hike was. They then told me about a second trail heading north that lead to a beaver pond. Well of course I wanted to go even though I was tuckered out. So off I went on the advice from the workshop leader. It was around 9 am by this time and the sun was getting higher and the sky was getting brighter but what the heck, I’m in the Rockies and not like I can just return anytime when the light is better. I wish now I had known about this place the day before and made an attempt to be here at first light, the views were wonderful and quite different from what I had been seeing. This is a shot from the area, dark shadows and bright distant views didn’t help much but I love the view and memory of the hike to get to just one more spot in nature. Funny but I don’t remember being tired out when I was standing here looking at the scene but I sure was breathing hard.