Weird bundling of three bundles of time in Golden, because why not.
I first arrived in late March to impose myself on my friend outside Denver until the Covid-lockdown-crazies calmed down and I could figure out where in the area would be a viable option to head next without restrictions and overwhelming closures. Little did I know I’d be here this long…
When I first arrived it was a beautiful spring evening. and we spent a day exploring downtown’s parks along Clear Creek after getting up early to catch the sunrise over town from Lookout Mountain. Before too long though I was treated to a beautiful snowy day. My friend Kevin took me out for a little intro hike in his neighborhood through the snow, which was beautiful but kicked my butt as my first outing at altitude. Kevin’s roommate made a nice fire which was fun- especially the part where he sprayed some kerosene or something… flame-o-rific but not long lasting.
After a few days I could tell the roommate was missing his space, so we took off to Kevin’s friend’s ski condo they said we could use to escape for a few days. Fraser is a cute little town that felt definitely empty and a little sad thanks to all that great press ski towns were getting in those days. We hung out, watched Terminator, went on a failed search for a geocache (or as my friend Inna would say, “geocrap”), frolicked in the snowy streams, and spent a day checking out frozen Lake Granby and Grand Lake where the trail we aimed for was closed, as was a lookout point just inside Rocky Mountain Park. Instead we found a picnic table in the snow by the lake to read and snack. Just after Fraser we took off to Iowa for what turned into 5 plus weeks before returning for about 2 weeks in May.
Now it was not just warm but some days hot. I went on a few little solo hikes around near Evergreen and Golden while Kevin did things like bike and run with friends who would not hurt themselves immediately as I would have. Happily for me, our friend Andrea was also just moving to the area, so I got to see her and we had a mask-laden reunion/ whatever you’d call a housewarming set in the parking lot of the Crocs headquarters? Another day we all got together to eat a box full of yummy Danish (the country rather than the type of pastry) pastries, and go for a hike together into a cloudy, chilly summit of Chief Mountain. Between this fun, some board games and shenanigans, taking full advantage of kitchen to make some good food, and helping Kevin spruce up a rental house for new tenants, two weeks went by getting chores done and we could hit the road for a two week Colorado tour road trip.
The last of the bundle was after returning from the tour for about a week of errands and meetups with friends. Places in town have pretty much reopened with distancing restrictions and adaptations, so the week was filled with patio time at restaurants and breweries for the most part. I managed to take almost zero photos this week, aside from to document that we went to the ordered take out from the original Chipotle and ate in the park.
I had a few days on my own in the area which I spent camped out outside Leadville, catching up on things (like these entries, cleaning and organizing, reading, sleeping, cooking, watching Queer Eye…). I took a hike around Turquoise Lake and had some lovely hammock time, and later tried and failed to order pizza in Leadville- the highest town in America full of frontier town storefronts and colorful cottages with patterned shingles and in one case a few skis and a billion dandelions. On the way I stopped off at St, Mary’s Glacier to hike up to the lake and glacier, where people were both skiing down the small slope and others were swimming. Cold two ways, yikes! Pretty area for sure, made prettier still by the piggy rock down the street. I’ve got to recreate this magic someday with a rock of my own.
Good times, Colorado! I guess that John Denver wasn’t so full of it after all. Otherwise I wouldn’t have been in this town for 5 weeks over 3 months…