One If By Land...

For the last 5 days we've been giving a big ol' Colorado welcome to my Uncle Skippy and Aunt Dotty. They're here from PA visiting us as part of their 3-stop (MO, WY and CO) tour. Tour by car, that is. That's right, they put about 2,500 miles on their car between leaving PA and arriving here, and have probably about 1,700 miles ahead of them beginning today on their return home. At the risk of sounding like ageists, Peggy and I feel that the traveling they've done (and are about to do) is a good amount for anyone (who isn't a truck driver). But when you factor in that the younger of them is a septuagenarian, well, we feel that's pretty darn special. Our (terry cloth) hats are off to both of you! Now, on to their visit...

Their visit got off to an unceremonious start on Thursday as within a couple of hours of arriving, we were at the local Emergency Room. My aunt had been experiencing some heel pain for several days and wanted to get it looked at. After being unable to set something up with local podiatrists, we set off to Boulder Community Hospital to have someone look at it. After seventy five minutes and an X-ray or two, she was told that she has a bone spur and that she'll need to take it easy over the next couple of days. So, we adjusted plans to accommodate and things worked out really well.

On Friday, while Peggy worked and Chloe went to school, I took them for a driving tour of Rocky Mountain National Park. Trip highlights were the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park (which inspired such pop icon phrases "Redrum" and/or "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy"), the Old Fall River Road, reaching the Continental Divide, and Trail Ridge Road (which, if you remember from a reference in a previous post, is the highest continuous highway in the US.) Except for the occasional snowflake and/or rain sprinkle, the weather cooperated quite well, as did the aspens and some of the local elk.

On Saturday, we took a quirky local bus tour of Boulder in the afternoon, and went out for a nice dinner.

Sunday was another road trip, this time to the cog railway near Colorado Springs of that summits Pike's Peak. As was the case on Friday, the weather couldn't have been better and the aspens in the higher elevations were brilliant. Taking the cog railway up to the summit is wonderfully relaxing and educational way to get to the 14,110 foot summit, even if some of the 25% grades made it tricky trying not to slide out of one's seat. And the views... well, after seeing them, it's no surprise Katharine Lee Bates penned those famous words back in 1893 when she saw the same views we saw today.

Yesterday day was a day of rest and prepping for the trek back East.

RMNP Pictures

The visitor's center sign where Old Fall River Road meets Trail Ridge Road.

Poudre Lake at Milner Pass & The Continental Divide

View of Horseshoe Park (grassy area in the center), the Alluvial Fan (fan shaped boulder field at the bottom end of Horseshoe Park) and part of Trail Ridge Road (bottom right of picture). The bright yellow trees are aspens.

An RMNP elk.

Looking West at the Continental Divide.

Views from Trail Ridge Road

Aspens near Hidden Valley

Pike's Peak Pictures

View from Inspiration Point

Your's truly...

Peg atop Pike's Peak, with spacious skies, purple mountains and fruited plains as a backdrop.

View from cog railway (note track zig-zagging from left side of picture.)

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