My First Guided Hike

I usually find my hikes on AllTrails or through recomendations from friends and had never been on a guided hike before but the  YMCA of the Rockies offers a guided hike for free when you’re staying there.

One of the best parts was that I didn’t have to worry about finding a hike or researching trail conditions – Our guide Pat did all the work for us! She checked in before and asked if there was any place I wanted to go, but I wanted to see what trail she picked for us. We chatted about the length and skill level then she said she’d scope out trail conditions as it got closer. We ended up getting quite a bit of snow the week before our hike so she ended up swapping plans and hikes because the trail would be a little too difficult. So we settled on Mills Lake and it was gorgeous!

She started by giving us spikes to wear which ended up being incredibly helpful and necessary after all the snow. Although – be careful! I caught the spikes on shoe on the other shoe and totally fell – which I’ve heard from a lot of people happens a lot, whoops!

Pat asked if we wanted a quiet hike or for her to chat and point things out along the way, we obviously wanted the latter. So we’d be walking past a rock and she’d casually drop information that it happened to be 1.7 billion years old, then she made us smell the Ponderosa trees because they smell like vanilla when you get real close.

Normally when I’m hiking I’m constantly pulling out the map to make sure we’re on the right track, so this was probably the most relaxing hike I’ve done in a while. I didn’t have to worry about anything other than putting one foot in front of the other.

Pat was the absolute sweetest and even brought hot chocolate for enjoying at the lake while we were hanging out. She’s incredibly passionate about hiking, Rocky Mountain National Park and also about keeping the trails exactly as they are. We talked a lot about Leave No Trace and respecting the trails and animals (don’t feed them no matter how much they beg!) One thing I didn’t realize is that carving your name into the Aspen Trees is not just tacky, but illegal. Pat was a wealth of knowlege and it was fun to have a few hours to ask endless questions. Plus, she absolutely killed the hike recomednation and I can’t wait to go back!

Kylie Bearse

Kylie Bearse

When I’m not exploring the trails, I’m a Meteorologist! You can see me every weekday morning on Fox31 KDVR from 4:30-10am! Have a weather question? Don’t hesitate to ask!

Kylie Bearse

Kylie Bearse

When I’m not exploring the trails, I’m a Meteorologist! You can see me every weekday morning on Fox31 KDVR from 4:30-10am! Have a weather question? Don’t hesitate to ask!

Join Kylie On YouTube!

Click HERE to get subscribed and join our YouTube community!

Kylie Bearse

Kylie Bearse

When I’m not exploring the trails, I’m a Meteorologist! You can see me every weekday morning on Fox31 KDVR from 4:30-10am! Have a weather question? Don’t hesitate to ask!

More From Kylie

Smores Mocktail

Smores Mocktail

I couldn’t be more excited to partner with my dear friend, Blair or as a few hundred thousand know her as - Holistic Rendezvous on Instagram, to finally create an Approachable Outdoors Mocktail - the Smokey S’mores! And since Approachable Outdoors is all about...

Weekend in Snowmass, Colorado

Weekend in Snowmass, Colorado

Snowmass is one of my favorite spots in Colorado and every time I go I fall more in love. On the slopes I had one of my best ski days ever (long, spacious runs without the crowds but incredible powder.)  To visit in the summer was an absolute delight. It has all...

Dog-Friendly Hikes in Moab

Dog-Friendly Hikes in Moab

The best dog-friendly hikes near Moab, UtahDog-friendly trails can be tricky to navigate in Moab with the National Parks, but there are plenty of trails to explore with your pup. Looking for more dog-friendly Moab? Check out my full weekend round-up of where to...

Dog-Friendly Moab Weekend

Dog-Friendly Moab Weekend

Moab is one of my favorite road trips from Denver - the drive is only 5 hours and the hiking, biking & off-roading trails are seemingly endless. However, with the National Parks it can be a little tough to find a way to find hikes that are dog friendly but it's...

Missouri Road Trip

Missouri Road Trip

I’ve always been a big city girl, but lately there’s something about small towns that have been absolutely stealing my heart - so a road trip bopping from one cute town to another cute town made for the perfect getaway. Not only were these places beautiful with...

Gear Review: 2024 Nemo Launch

Gear Review: 2024 Nemo Launch

I bought the NEMO Stargazer back when everyone was spending money on tie-dye sweat suits during 2019, before I even had one solo camping trip under my belt, much less a tent, a bag or any other camping essentials. What I did know was that whoever said that ‘money...

Keep In Touch!

To keep up with the latest hikes & posts sign up for the Approachable Outdoors newsletter!

You have Successfully Subscribed!