Friday, January 7, 2011

CO/WY Highlights

After a week of touring from Denver, CO to Lander, WY to Grand Junction, CO and back to Denver, a whirlwind week of blizzards, bad roads, sub-zero wind chills, wedding & New Year's festivities, and lots of visiting with friends here and there and everywhere, we were happy to be safely on the ground in Minneapolis again Wed. evening. It's now Sat. night, and I haven't posted a thing since Dec. 31st. Sorry about the long delay (for the two of you that might have noticed). I'm an introvert, which means I expend energy quickly in social situations and recover slowly, requiring solitude for full recuperation. And I haven't had much of that in the last eight days. But we're home now, and I was oh-so-happy to walk in the front door and be greeted by our cat Mojo. The girls were snuggled like bugs in a rug in their bed, but with some prompting, came out to see what the ruckus was about. I didn't get any pics of that, I was too exhausted. I finally got my camera's flash card into the computer today to see if I managed to capture any of the splendor of our trip across the Rockies. Here are a few of my favorites. Don't look too closely - we never stopped to take these pics, they were all taken while driving, so they are a bit blurry around the edges. Here was the blizzard we drove through on the way from Cheyenne to Lander, WY.

white out! And here was my date for the wedding. I know, sympathies welcome. Just kidding babe. I luv ya. papa bear The wedding chapel. Awwww... wedding chapel The snowflake girl and ring bearer. Awwww... snowflake girl The lovely wedding couple (Stephanie & Hunter). Awww... steph & hunter The hills outside of Lander, WY. Clouds coming over (forming from?) the mountains. I could have built a house here. The view was pure bliss. As we headed south from I80 on CO 789 towards Grand Junction, just south of the town of Craig I began spotting elk. Free-ranging, loose, not-in-a-fence elk. Unfortunately my camera, and skills, were not of the caliber to shoot an elk in the distance while traveling 65mph. You'll just have to imagine them folks. First one, a big bull, on a riverbank, then a second, smaller bull near the same river, further down. And then, I began seeing them everywhere in the hills. Groups of cows (females), some scrabbling up nearly vertical hillsides. And mule deer. I wish I had a picture of the 3 mule deer bucks who were lying down so all you could see above the deep snow were their faces & horns.

photo from here.

Sunday, as we drove out of Grand Junction, we admired a heavy frost coating all the trees and bushes white. A side trip off of I70 down to Carbondale so Papa Bear could check out the Solar Energy Institute yielded a gorgeous valley flanked by mountains. It's north-south layout gave it nice afternoon sunshine. Its proximity to Snowmass gave me visions of skiers in need if nice alpaca-wear. carbondale, co Coming over the Rockies is unbelievable. We finally had good roads, glimpses of sunshine, and breath-taking vistas around every bend. The closer we came to Denver, the more big-name ski hills we passed by. I regret we did not have the time or funds to ski on this trip. Doesn't that wide open snowfield just beg for a big 'ol snow angel? I suppose that might invoke an avalanche, and it would be ugly if an angel smothered in a snowbank. We'll just imagine one there instead. It was, undoubtedly, one of the if not the most scenic drive I've ever been on. I regret to inform you I have no pics of the city of Denver, or of any of the other friends we visited. I was too busy enjoying myself to remember to take out the camera. Just envision happy people enjoying good food and good company. That about sums it up. I am now going to go hibernate under my mountain of blankets, put a pillow over my head, and enjoy some solitude. Cheers -


J said...

Seems like one of those epics you read about; a story of danger, sweeping vistas, unexpected adventure, and even a pinch of romanticism. Very nice photos and weddings are always fun.

Victoria Strauser said...

:) Thanks!

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