This is my third, and last, attempt at composing an update today. I started with a carefully composed account of our travels these past days, which was ruthlessly devoured by my iPhone moments before publication. Then, I made a second attempt that also fell victim to the clutches of failed technology. So here it is, my final attempt:
When I last left you, we were deliriously driving down a desolate Utah road, winding through switchbacks as an inexplicably awake McGoo navigated them Jeep. We ended up spending the night in a Walmart parking lot. I woke up a tangled mess of limbs with Niko in the backseat. We sped out of Utah in the early morning light, headed back towards Colorado.
I had my first experience with true mountain driving yesterday as we made our way back towards the Denver area. It was slightly frightening to guide the temperamental Jeep through an afternoon rain storm while the boys snoozed away, but I thoroughly enjoyed the snow-capped scenery. I definitely want to spend some time living in Colorado during the next decade of my life; this place is unlike anything I have ever seen before.
We stopped in Evergreen, CO, to do some climbing at Three Little Sisters park. We got lost trying to locate the boulder fields, but it brought us upon a bunch of peaceful deer lounging amongst the rocks and pines. I love the feeling of making eye contact with a creature, and feeling a mutual, non-threatening connection.
We finally happened upon a few good problems before the sun went down. Niko almost lost his footing on a top out when he startled a chipmunk at the top of a route, who angrily chastised Niko for disturbing his perch. I worked a few routes, which reminded me of my hatred for top outs. I’ve clearly spent too much time climbing indoors.
As the sun bid us a final farewell for the evening, we headed into Denver to catch a late showing of Inception. Spending $17.00 on an IMAX ticket almost gave me a heart attack, but the movie lived up to all the hype. I generally do not enjoy movies, but this one kept my attention from beginning to end. After an unfulfilling meal at Perkins, we drove back out to Pike National Forest and pitched a quick tent.
Today was a lazy day, mainly spent in Denver. We dropped McGoo off for lunch with an old friend, then headed towards our own grub destination, Jack-n-Grill. I had heard about it while watching TV in my Jackson Hole hotel room over the weekend. They boast creation of the world’s largest burrito – 7 pounds of potatoes, 12 eggs, 1/2 pound of ham and everything but the kitchen sink. Any woman who finishes one eats free at Jack-n-Grill for the rest of her life. I settled for a bean and cheese burrito, which was still an epic struggle to finish. Jeff ordered a burger that was the size of his head. The best part is, it was a cheap eat. Nothing is as satisfying as a brick-sized burrito that costs less than $8.00. Hell, I could get two burritos there for less than the price of a single IMAX ticket.
We met back up with McGoo at a charming community garden in a residential area of Denver. It was bursting with vegetables and towering flower stalks. I snapped some shots with my AE1 while bees and tiny birds flitted around the garden.
This entire state is covered in sunflowers – in the community garden, in the parks, even all along the highways. Add that to the list of reasons I want to live out here. Did I mention the medical marijuana dispensaries sitting on every street corner?
Currently, we are headed towards our campsite in Colorado Springs, near the Garden of the Gods. The next few days will be filled with climbing on outlandish red rock formations, and I promise to keep my loyal readers updated as usual.
In the meantime, do me a favor. Leave me a quick comment with your name – I’d love to know who is reading this, and where you came from. I’m getting upwards of 100 views a day. I know my viewers range from classmates to my parents’ co-workers, but I’m curious for specifics! Thank you for reading, you give me reason to keep writing.
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