This was my first vacation with Eric, and we had a blast! We camped in Woodland Park, CO, and we hiked, climbed, drove, ate, laughed, and had an all-around fantastic time. So, in more detail, we hiked through Garden of the Gods, which is lovely and dry, and full of colors like terracotta, every variation of green, and a dabble here and there of yellows and purple from the blooming cacti. After this, we went to cave of the winds. What a contrast! Cool, dark, damp, deep into the earth. We drove to the top of Pikes Peak. It was the first time in years that Eric had been there, and the first time he'd driven it. Following this, we walked to the top of Seven falls. Let me tell you, I could feel every fat cell in my body crying out for more carbs and wine! I'm so out of shape, but I made it. One set of steps had over 180 steps and another had 204. Now, these are not like the stair stepper I like to use in my front room. They were steep and there is no oxygen in Colorado! I'm telling you, breathing in that altitude is horrid. I do not know how anyone could ever do their yoga deep breathing in Colorado. I tried to suck air in, but to no avail! But, like I said, we made it to the top of each set of steps and were both able to hike further up at the top. The contrast of both days was palpable, though. From hiking desert like conditions to exploring a cave to driving to the top of one peak to walking to the top of Seven Falls. Wow. I love Colorado! We ate at a place called Buck Snort, which is out in the middle of no where. Seriously. We had to drive a thin road along large boulders that had rolled down the mountain at some point in time. On the way there, we saw valleys, green, lush, bathing in the sunset, horses and elk grazing for food, fly-fishermen in the streams, all highlighted so perfectly and peacefully by the evening sky. It was beautiful. Buck Snort is a "saloon". It's got great food, but is so desolate, that few people make it back there. That being said, it looks like everyone has been there. People carve their names in every nook and cranny. It's filled with names of famous and not so famous people who have been fortunate enough to have heard about the place. It looks like a "dive", but it was filled with so much character. After eating, we were walking back to the car, and I stopped because a small animal was coming toward me. It took a minute, but I realized it was a fox. Evidently, it eats at the restuarant in the evening. Yes, it's wild, and I let it be the one to get close to me--which was too close for Eric who felt obligated to remind me that it was a wild animal and my camera wouldn't protect me.
The next day we drove to Cripple Creek and decided to drive to Canon City--down a dirt road, winding through a canyon, steep drop offs, gorgeous!
This last photo is of the hail storm we hit in Eastern Colorado. Yes, it's hail. There was so much hail that they called out the snow plows! It was horrible. No beauty here. It was pitch black and the hail pelted us relentlessly. There had to have been a tornado near by.
Well, I'm off for birthday cake. Eric is making it for me!
Dispatch - dispatch my newest artist book
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