Friday, June 18, 2010

Rocky Mountain High

I know several of you have been fretting that we seem to be neglecting Tillie. Not true. John got dressed this morning and, before he'd even had his first cup of coffee, he was crawling under Tillie. On the way to Boulder she had developed a very noisy "rattle" around the gear shift especially in low gear. And, seeing the mountains that lay ahead of us, we doubt she'll being doing much 4th gear cruising. The problem appears to be a disintegrating gasket. John is optimistic that having now turned the gasket around it will last until Boise. (John refers to me on matters such as this as Ms. Negativity so you can probably guess what I think of this "fix"... ) Tillie already has an appointment to visit her favorite Boise VW guru she met when she was there 4 years ago so that gives me some comfort. Also Sarah has been out talking to Tillie to reassure her that she will do just fine.

Today Sarah & Kenny took us to our Rocky Mountain National Park on the route John had originally planned to take Tillie. Hard to believe you can go from flat Boulder at 5,000+ ft. to a park elevation of 12,000+ ft. in less than two hours. The old Stanley Hotel, upper left, was built by Freeland Stanley (you remember him - he built the Stanley steamer...) The scenery in the park is beautiful, rugged and a bit colder than Boulder down below, much of it above the treeline. At the bottom right is a "bachelor pack" of elk (take note George). Lower left is an elk/moose of a different breed (take note George?). We stopped because there were a bunch of young folks pointing up the bank. They were having a great time suckering folks into pulling over to see more wildlife. The young woman with the headgear was having a great time too. Having now seen the route through the park, I think Tillie was very lucky a less dramatic route is now planned.

Coming out of the park we took a back dirt road to go through the small mountain town of Gold Hill. When Kenny worked the "mountains" for the phone company he often stopped here for lunch where the food is "terrific". If you can see the sign in the window they also offer wireless. Worst luck - the store was closed by the time we got there. The second photo is thanks to Kenny who turned around (in spite of John's protests) and went back for me to take the shot... my first one with both a clothesline (have you put up yours yet?) and an outhouse (this little town is remote). If the air looks a bit hazy that's from the dust in the air from the dirt road. I'm not sure how much cleaner those pants will be at the end of the day.
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