My 4th of July was spent hiking at Brainard Lake in the Indian Peaks Wilderness. Just outside Ward on the Peak to Peak Highway is the windy road that leads to Brainard Lake. It is a beautiful area in both summer and winter. With elevations above 10,000 at the start, you can hike a 12,000′ or 13,000′ peak should you like or just do a simple trail around Long Lake. This July the wildflowers were out in full force with beautiful cascades and mountain vistas. The wildflowers were so abundant along this trail with beautiful cascades and lakes. Be aware of the mosquitos who will annoy the crap out of you. I suggest some good bug spray if you plan on hanging around a lake at all. We enjoyed our lunch on the shore of Blue Lake with a few sprinkles to cool it off. Do enjoy this beautiful area, explore, hike, lounge, have a picnic and just relax.