Saturday, June 12, 2010

Take a Hike!!!--June 11, 2010

Woke up at 8:30.  Grabbed some breakfast and took a shower.  Pete slept a couple hours more than I did.  Didn't do a whole lot this morning.  When the cleaning ladies came in, I went for a little walk.  The weather was pretty stinkin' nice out...made me almost wonder if we should be flying!!!  But the clouds came pretty quickly.

We ended up going out to a new restaurant for us...we tried the Bear Diner.  It was pretty tasty.  I had a simple club sandwich and potato salad.  Nice to get away from the fried stuff again.  Whatever I ate last night pretty much killed me this morning.  My body just can't go from "soft" foods to fried foods easily.  I either have to eat all fried or not at all!

We came back to the hotel, and we watched a bit of the World Cup.  I think I'm going to enjoy this next month!  It's pretty enjoyable to watch.  I pooted around on the internet for awhile, and I toyed with going to Arches National Park.  But the more I thought about it, the more time passed.  I finally decided not to.  And I found myself on the internet again.  I couldn't take it, though!!!  In a crazy fit of passion, I shut down my computer, grabbed my camera, and headed out the door!


I ended up going northeast towards Grand Mesa.  I really didn't know what to expect, but I just knew I would kick myself if I ended up back home in Illinois, thinking about hiking somewhere!  Screw the hotel!  I HAD to get out.  I owed it to myself.  And the hardest step was that first one!  Pete said he wasn't interested, so I headed out alone.  Fine by me.

And I ended up having a blast.  I drove up through the Mesa scenic drive, and it was just beautiful.  I was expecting more orange rock, but I was incredibly surprised to find a LUSH forest!!!  It was some of the deepest, darkest green foliage I've ever seen!  It was quite picturesque!!!  I stopped numerous times to take pictures!


But I kept driving up!  The little Cobalt was smelling a little burnt, but I pressed on!  ha!  The scenery is just fantastic.  We are so blessed to have such a huge and beautiful country.  And it's these little off-the-beaten-path drives that few ever take.  Interstate 70 cuts right through this country, but you never get the views like this.  It takes a little time and effort, but it's just so worth it!  I went from desert to rainforest in the course of 40 minutes!  So beautiful.

As I climbed higher and higher, the temps were noticeably different every time I stepped out of the vehicle to take pictures.  I also started seeing snow.  More and more!  On one of the turn-offs, I even had a couple of feet in front of me!  I thought long and hard about whether to bulldoze the Cobalt through the drift or just give up altogether.  Seeing as how I was 10,000 feet high with poor cell-phone reception and few cars, I made the DIFFICULT decision to NOT get my car stuck.  I turned around and went another direction.


The views just kept getting more and more beautiful.  I found numerous lakes up there on top of the mesa.  It reminded me of Canada...or Alaska!  Even though I've never really spent time in either!  ha!  Is that possible?!  I got out of the car and took a short hike.  It was cold, the terrain was pretty crazy (I loved it!), and I found what I thought might be bear tracks, so I let that one be short-lived.  After doing some research back here, though, I think it was a dog track.  Oh well!  I just kept taking in the views, snapping up all the pictures I could take!  I found a larger lake, and I hiked all the way down to it.  Man, was it steep on the hike back!  I was out of breath!  And the air was cold!  Not a fun combination!  I downed the rest of my left-over sweet tea to help out!



The views were just perfect!

I just kept on driving, doing more of the same.  Getting out to take in the views, take pictures, and sometimes walk around!  I just loved it.  I NEEDED THIS.  I ended up spending a few hours away from the hotel.  It was such a welcome relief!  I was doing what Andy loves to do.  I was being me!  I just ate it all up.



I finally made my way back to Grand Juntion (got lost in town and spent 20-30 minutes just trying to get to the hotel!).  I made a quick stop at the airport to see what happened last night, but the girl wasn't there.  Oh well.  I picked Pete up from the hotel, then we headed out to eat at Famous Dave's BBQ again.  Pretty good.  We came back to the hotel and watched 3:10 to Yuma.  That took me up through 11:00 o'clock.

Now about flying!  ha!  Basically, things maaaaaaaaaaaay work out!  We'll see.  Today I didn't fly any.  And tomorrow is looking pretty bad, too.  This is the FIRST time since I've been here (16 days) that the forecast is calling for clouds at 5,000 feet.  They are also calling for cumulonimbus clouds around 8,000 feet later in the day.  Basically, that just never happens here.  The clouds are always at 20,000 or 25,000!!!  So we're not expecting to fly tomorrow, either.  And Sunday?  Well, we've got a 50% chance of rain and thunderstorms tomorrow AND Sunday.  So we'll see!

How crazy would it be if my next flight is my trip to Daytona Beach?!  Agh, that would make me so happy!!!  Maybe I'm done flying lines?!  Hey, a man can dream, right?!

Ended up going to bed at 12:30 A.M.  We'll check the weather tomorrow, but I'm hoping for another day off.  It would be I can watch the USA vs. England soccer match!  I guess we'll see!


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