Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Colorado - 2009

I made two trips to Colorado in 2009. 

The first was on Sunday, August 9, when I left Utah with my brother-in-law, Dave Kenison, and we drove to Ouray, then up into the Yankee Boy Basin, and slept in the bed of his truck. Monday morning, August 10, we climbed the southwest ridge of 14,157 foot Mt. Sneffels, then came down the standard route. It was one of the most challenging and fun hiking experiences of my life. We finished the climb and then headed back to Utah. 
     Mount Sneffels  (Bob)

The second trip was to celebrate our 30th anniversary! 

We left LAX on Frontier Airlines at 6:20 a.m. and arrived in Denver at 9:39 a.m. We rented a car from EZ Rent a Car and drove to Buckhorn Exchange in downtown Denver where we had 11:15 a.m. reservations. This restaurant has been in operation since 1893 and five presidents have dined there, including Teddy Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan. We invited our nephew, Scott Jones, and his wife Kelsey, who live in Denver, to join us. I'd already staked out the menu and ordered the following as appetizers to share: buffalo sausage with red chile polenta; rattlesnake marinated in red chile and lime and served with a chipotle cream sauce; and Rocky Mountain oysters. For a main dish I ordered buffalo prime rib and Judy got a broiled elk medallion. We ended with a dessert of double chocolate rocky road brownie with ice cream (I liked this place so much I've been back twice).  We had reservations for two nights at Ores & Mine Bed and Breakfast in Twin Lakes, owned by John and Donna Cornella, in the Dolly B room with two queen beds. On the drive to Twin Lakes we stopped in Georgetown, and walked around, then Leadville, and walked around. I believe we ate at Quincy's in Leadville and had prime rib, their Friday night special. Then to Twin Lakes to our bed and breakfast where we spent the night.

Saturday, September 12, we hiked to the summit of 14,433 foot Mt. Elbert, the tallest mountain in Colorado and the second tallest in the contiguous U.S. We took the east ridge route which was 12 miles roundtrip and 4,900 feet of elevation gain. The aspen leaves had turned yellow and it was one of the most beautiful scenic views I've ever seen. I got pulmonary edema and was slowed drastically, but made it back safely and enjoyed another night at the bed and breakfast. 
     Mount Elbert  (Bob)
     Gray Jay  (Bob)

Sunday, September 13, our anniversary, we woke up to see the mountains covered with snow and were happy we'd climbed Mt. Elbert the day before. We decided to drive to Manitou Springs, 113 miles and about a 2 hour drive, and take the Pikes Peak Cog Railway to the 14,110 foot summit of Pikes Peak. 
The train travels 8.9 miles and climbs 6,571 feet. It was snowy and cold on top, but we saw bighorn sheep and a coyote from the train. That evening we had reservations at The Fort in Morrison, one of my very favorite restaurants (this was my first time there), where we celebrated our anniversary. 
Manitou Springs to Morrison
We sampled braised buffalo tongue, quail eggs with buffalo sausage, buffalo marrow bones, a salad with smoked duck and buffalo ribs slathered in bbq sauce (which was too much of a good thing). Judy had a buffalo ribeye which was by far a better choice. That evening we stayed at the Hyatt Summerfield Suites - Denver Tech Center, in Englewood. 
     Pikes Peak  (Bob)
     The Fort  (Bob)

Monday, September 14, we spent some time in Denver, including a visit to Hammond Candy Factory. Then we left Denver on Frontier Airlines at 3:30 p.m. and arrived at LAX at 4:52 p.m.


  1. Buffalo prime rib, that sounds over the top fancy. Was it good?

  2. I'm glad I got in on one or two of the Colorado trips. It was fun to climb Mt. Elbert.