Colorado 2009 collage
Train route (approximate)

Colorado April 2009

Sandra had to go on a trip for work, and Christina and I went along - I had often thought that Colorado might be a good place to live in or to retire in, and so I was looking forward to seeing it. We flew to Denver and I was surprised to see how flat and desert-like it was. Sagebrush was actually blowing across the parking lot! Not the gorgeous wilderness I was expecting, but we had to drive up into the mountains, and the scenery got a lot better. I wish I had taken some pictures of the skiers coming down almost beside the highway. I don't remember ever seeing skiers so close to the road before.

Red Rocks

Red Rocks

The color of the rocks was fascinating, a deep reddish-brown that I had never seen before. Even the mud was that color. When I went out taking pictures I came across a sign that disallowed access to the rocks, which was too bad because I wanted to climb up on them and see them up close.

River

Scenery

River, rocks, creeks, snow, and sunshine ... very nice! Click on the last picture to see the big version, and look up close at the rocks on the far riverbank - they have a very interesting geometrical quality. I had not seen anything like that along a riverbank before.

River

Mountain Architecture

There is a style here that they call "Mountain Architecture", that I find to be VERY nice. It includes a lot of wood and stone work. The house on the left even applies it to their garage doors! The house in the middle has amazing wood siding, perhaps even reclaimed from an old barn? HGTV (Home and Garden tv) has a "Dream Home" giveaway contest every year, and for 2011 they are giving away a house on a ski hill in Vermont that is designed in this style. While they force you to watch a 30-second commercial to do it, you can see their 90-second exterior tour or interior tour. You can see all about this house on their Dream Home 2011 web site, including more videos, floor plans, and stop-motion pictures of the construction.

Silver tree against blue sky

The Peaceful Solitude of Nature

I went out on a couple of photo-taking trips and was impressed by the quiet, natural beauty of the area. This was a great time of year for being out, sunny (Colorado gets a lot of sunny days) and warm despite the snow. Look at this little guy getting some sun on the rocks!

School

Work, Work, Work

Sandra was working with a teacher at this school, and Christina was able to play with the kids at lunch time. It was a cute little school and many of the kids there are Latino. I was very surprised to find that out.

Christina by sculpture

Relaxing

We found a couple of restaurants that we liked to go to, and a fun bookstore in an interesting mall, but ended up spending the last couple of days in bed with strep throat! Christina caught it from a friend of hers and passed it on to Reid sometime during the trip. Luckily Sandra didn't catch it, because she had to work.

Corral

Tidbits and Photographs

I was driving around on the upper plateau and asked this guy if I could take a picture of his snowmobile. He said "sure", then got into this pose for me. I ended up talking to him for a while, he is a retired lawyer that moved out to Colorado from Wisconsin. He said that the houses with views across the top of the plateau get an extra million dollars. I don't think he was joking, either! The other pictures in this section don't follow a theme, I just liked them. They look better larger, so click on them to see the bigger versions.