Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Day 20- MOOSE!!!!!! And Fort Collins

October 4th 2010 Day 20 Monday

We got back yesterday evening from Steamboat Lake and I was happy to get the time to relax by myself and write in my journal about all the crazy events of the weekend. Tyler went out with Joel for a little bit and I was going to watch the Giants football game if I could get it on a broadcast channel on our television but it didn’t work. That was alright because watching the Giants recently has just depressed me. I have faith that they can get better though!

We decided to spend Sunday night in Steamboat so we could head out early this morning. We had everything in the travel trailer pretty much together so it didn’t take long for us to be travel ready once we’d woken up. I was happy to get the chance to hike Hanz up the hill for his morning jaunt one last time. It really is so beautiful here.

Tyler and I decided it was highly necessary for us to return to Creekside one last time for a delicious breakfast before we left Steamboat. We sat in the same spot outside next to the wrought iron fence so that Hanz could lie down nearby and across from a stream that trickled softly in the background. I ordered what they described as a French toast breakfast sandwich: baguette French toast with two scrambled eggs, ham, and swiss cheese. Holy cow was that amazing! The Creekside CafĂ© (http://www.creekside-cafe.com/) in Steamboat Springs, CO is definitely in my top 5 best eateries of all time!

French toast with scrambled eggs, ham and swiss cheese from the Creekside Cafe!

Me and Tyler at the Creekside Cafe
They were hiring, which made me very excited, and for a second I was tempted to just stay in Steamboat and live for a while but that wasn’t a very practical idea and we still had a huge leg of our trip to do. Really, this is just the beginning. But I am definitely scouting as we go to see where I would consider living.
After a very filling breakfast (of course I had leftovers!) we packed everything up, hugged Rayne and Bear goodbye, thanked them for their generous hospitality and hit the road towards Fort Collins. We went over Rabbit Ears pass, which gave us a great view of Steamboat from above.

Once we passed through Walden we entered into Roosevelt National Forest, which added some much appreciated scenery to our drive. 

A Gorgeous View Into Roosevelt National Forest
Along Hwy 14 I waited in anticipation for the Moose Visitor’s Center and kept my eyes open for Moose, since there was supposed to be a lot of them in this area because they love water. We traveled for miles with my head craning out the window, determined to see moose. I had only seen one moose in my whole life and that was a couple weeks ago in Ennis! We were driving down a small, two lane highway, surrounded by conifers when I looked out my window and saw 4 moose! There was a bull moose with huge antlers and 3 cows (cows are female moose for all of you in NY! <3). OMG I was so excited! About 2 miles down the road we got to the Moose Visitor’s Center. We went inside and I excitedly told the woman at the front desk what I’d seen and I got to write it on the “Moose Sightings” board! The woman was also excited because she said that there haven’t been many sightings this year. I felt so lucky! Another woman who also worked for the Colorado Parks Dept came in a few minutes later and said she had also seen them, except she had also seen a baby that had been lying on the ground! I wish I had seen that but as it was I felt so blessed I couldn’t really complain.

There was an amazing statue of a moose outside of the Visitor's Center. A local family team of wire sculpture artists (Louis, Carl and Brian Gueswel) worked over 700 hours. They used steel tubing and barbed wire as well as a rust converter to give it a lifelike color and appearance. The statue is almost 7 feet tall and is modeled after the real size of a record moose from the area! It's quite impressive in person, the detail it amazing!

Barbed Wire Sculpture at the Moose Visitor's Center in Walden, CO
Moose are such cool animals. Their sheer size is enough to wow you but then if you know anything about them it just makes them that much more amazing. Bull moose antlers can actually grow to over 6 feet in length but despite their incredible size they are really good swimmers. They can even fully submerge while swimming, usually for 30 seconds or more. On land they can run up to 35 mph. That would be a sight to see! Although it would probably also be the last sight you’d see.

When we arrived in Fort Collins we realized there wasn’t anywhere ideal for us to park for the night. Tyler’s friend Aaron said there was a parking lot behind his house where we could park. It was a small parking lot behind a building that was being converted into a women’s shelter. Aaron’s backyard butted up against the lot so it wasn’t completely sketchy but we did get some weird looks from neighbors. I think if we’d stayed for more than one night someone would have complained but it wasn’t a big deal for just one night.

Fort Collins was an alright city. It's crazy how flat it is, since it's in Colorado I assumed it would be in a valley in the mountains but that wasn't the case. I didn't really get the chance to get a good feel for life in Fort Collins because we didn't stay for very long but it seemed very sprawled and not very appealing. There didn't seem to be a real city center that was walkable and where you could spend a lot of time. I must be missing something though because this year Money magazine voted it the #6 best place to live in the country. I guess one thing that is pretty cool about Fort Collins is that it has five microbreweries!  

Aaron had a midterm the next day so we hung out for a while but then he had to meet a study group for a while. Tyler and I decided to go see the new Oliver Stone film, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps. It was pretty much what I had expected, entertaining but far from brilliant.

When we got back Tyler went over to Aaron’s to chill some more since it had been so long since they had seen each other. I was pretty tired since we’d gotten into the habit of going to bed early so I decided to lie in bed and read. I made the mistake of starting The Girl Who Played with Fire, the second book in Stieg Larsson’s Millenium Trilogy and was quickly sucked in. Before I knew it, it was almost 1am!

I was kind of uneasy about sleeping in the lot because I was a bit worried that at any moment the police would knock on the door and tell us to scram but that didn’t happen. The anticipation was probably more stressful than anything else but it was only for one night so it was okay. And just in case any creepers came around I had my handy Costa Rican machete by the bed!

1 comment:

  1. I'm beginning to think this trip is an excuse for you 2 to eat your way across the West and find new tasty things to indulge in! love ya' - Uncle Matt