Monday, September 24, 2007

Colorado Vacation - Part 1

A little more than two weeks ago I went to Colorado (Denver, actually) for two weeks. Talk about big sky country! It was amazing how far off into the distance you could look and still see the sky. Big, blue and beautiful, mixed with high, white clouds that seemed to go on forever, the Colorado sky stretched into eternity. Oh yeah, and then there's the mountains.

One day we went to Red Rock, the natural amphitheater. Didn't get to hear a concert but we walked all around the place. To start off with, we're a mile above sea level and so, according to the chart in the visitor's center, we're only taking in 80% of the oxygen we would be at sea level. It was exhausting walking up and down the stairs. Then we watched the fire dept. trainees go thru their paces; that is, running up and down the stairs, pausing at each landing to do push-ups and jumping jacks. It made me feel tired just eating my ice cream cone.

Red Rock is beautiful. It's in the front range (first there's the plains, then the foothills and then the front range) of the Rockies. The rocks are red sandstone and are huge. The indigenous people used the ampitheater as an ampitheater for thousands of years, but left it the way it originally was. In the 1930's the CCC workers came in and created the seating, stage, parking lots, and roadway into the place. Nevertheless, the beauty of the place hasn't been too marred. You stand/sit anywhere and the vista is just magnificent. You look out to the south and your eyes capture the the length of the front range as the mountains extend down toward New Mexico. Standing at the topof the ampitheater, looking east, you can see Denver off in the distance. Behind you, the mountains continue to rise.

We drove off on an access road to a "geologic point" for another view. On the crest of a north- facing rock bluff we came upon a photographer taking pictures of a fair skinned, long blonde-haired woman who was wearing a full length blue gown. The model, standing with her gown flowing and hair blowing in the gentle breeze on the bluff against a background vista of red rocks, green vegetation and cerulean sky, was an incredible sight. It kind of summed up the atmosphere of the whole place.