Winter Activities at Brainard Lake

View from below Lefthand Reservoir

Brainard Lake Recreation Area is one of the most beautiful spots in the Front Range. Nestled between Nederland and Ward, Brainard Lake is just 45 minutes up the mountains from Boulder. To complement summer hiking, fishing, backpacking, and cycling, this area offers incredible winter activities such as snowshoeing, cross country skiing, and picnicking. 

From about November to May, the Brainard Lake Road is closed beyond the entrance station. This road turns into an excellent start for any skiing, snowshoeing, or picnic adventure. From the entrance station, you have three route options: stay on the road, veer left onto Lefthand Park Reservoir Road, or turn right onto the Sourdough Trail. 

Heading straight on Brainard Lake Road offers adventurers a relatively flat path, perfect for learning to cross country ski or snowshoe. Red Rock Lake is the first destination on this path, just ½ mile beyond the entrance station. From here, users can follow the road another 1.5 miles to Brainard Lake.

Those looking for some elevation gain may opt to follow Lefthand Park Reservoir Road to Lefthand Park Reservoir for beautiful views of the Indian Peaks Wilderness. This winter trail climbs 600 feet over the course of 1.8 miles to the reservoir.

For people who enjoy the solitude of snowy singletrack, Sourdough Trail offers miles and miles of pristine winter wilderness. This trail connects to South Saint Vrain and Waldrop trails for a long, scenic route to Brainard Lake.

Motivational Monday – Living In the Present

Choosing to live in the past or the future not only robs you of the enjoyments that today brings, but it robs you of truly living. The only important moment is the present moment... If you wish to begin living more mindfully in each and every moment, consider this list of tips below!

(Video Credit: Tragedy & Hope, Audio: Alan Watts)

Remove unneeded possessions

Embracing a more minimalist lifestyle forces you to live in the present moment. Remove items that remind you of past memories - you will free up your energy to start living in the present.

Smile often

Start your day with a smile! Write a reminder note on your computer monitor to smile, put images or quotes up on your walls that inspire happy feelings. Remember, you and you alone are in control of your attitude every morning. Do yourself the favor of keeping things optimistic.

Soak it all in

Pay closer attention to the sights, smells, sounds and emotions that rise up throughout the moments of your day. Embrace feelings that come from both successes and sorrows, and appreciate each for the experience they offer.

LOVE your job

Most of us spend at least 5 full days out of the week (71% of our waking time) working in our chosen profession. If you're in a constant state of "surviving" the workweek, you're wasting nearly 3/4 of your life! Though it can be a challenge, there are two solutions to this: 1) Find a new job you enjoy that inspires you, or 2) Find something about your current career that you appreciate and engage in that rather than focusing on the negatives.

Forgive past hurt feelings

When someone does wrong against us, we have the choice to move on or allow their poor choice to continue impacting our mood and outlook on life. Choose to forgive and move forward for your own sake.

Don't dwell too much on past accomplishments

It's plain and simple - if you are too busy talking about what you did yesterday, you certainly haven't done much today!

Stop worrying

Has worry ever accomplished much of anything for anyone? There's no way to fully appreciate the day if your mind is focused on yesterday or tomorrow. After all, tomorrow will come whether you worry about it or not.

Dream about tomorrow, work hard today

It is important to set big goals and plan for a beautiful future, but putting the effort in today will get you that much closer to tomorrow. Don't fall into the trap of letting dreaming take the place of hard work in this moment.