Rocky Mountain High, Colorado

On the goal I set to visit all of the lower 48 states before I turned 30, it became “real” once I got down to the last few. In early November, with just four to go, I kicked it into overdrive. Knowing I had two months to still visit four states, I knew each weekend was crucial. In early November I crossed #45 off my list, Colorado.

I’d been to Colorado before, but only the airport, and according to me, and most other seasoned travelers, that doesn’t count as, “Visiting.” My criteria was simple though, “Do Something Memorable.” Denver was about a 10 hour drive, one way, from Des Moines. This made it workable in theory for a weekend, but 20 hours of driving, just to get to the state… made it seem like more of a job than an adventure. I’ve become a huge fan of slow travel, and many travel blogs and writers have as well. So I sought to find a decently priced flight.

I’ve written before about Kayak Explore, which is a great twist on a tool to find low cost flights. I found a roundtrip ticket on Frontier airlines from Des Moines to Denver, and on the weekend too. The great deal was too good to pass up and I was off.

Screen shot 2013-12-15 at 12.37.18 AM

Exploring Denver  and Colorado area, I had been encouraged to check out “Snooze” which is a strictly breakfast restaurant, especially famous for their pancakes. I checked it out at their Denver location near Coors Field baseball stadium and I wasn’t disappointed. Great pancakes. I got the “Pancake Flight” which is a sampler platter of any three pancakes you’d like.

It just so happened that the day I arrived there was a Crossfit workout taking place at Red Rocks Amphitheater. I’d get in too late to participate, but I had enough time to watch some of the workouts. If you’ve never visited Red Rocks, it’s a huge outdoor theater of sorts, carved into the side of a mountain. It’s got a gorgeous view that I’d imagine would be a great place to see one of their concerts.

Star trails wrap around polaris behind Creation Rock

I also spent some time visiting a friend of mine who had moved to Colorado. My good friend, former roommate and current business partner Matt had moved to Colorado a ways back and we were able to meet up a couple of times over the weekend. He and his girlfriend met up with me on Saturday for lunch and we visited the Coor’s brewery in the city Golden. I’d say it was analogous to other brewery tours I’ve been on. Nothing that stood out, though I do enjoy reading the history behind companies and businesses. Compared to the Budweiser Tour in St Louis, I’d have to give the edge to Bud. They have the Clydesdale horses after all.

I’ve got some more thoughts on my trip to Colorado though I see this post is getting  a bit long. I’ll cover some more in my next post.