Our Trip To Colorado

Our Trip To Colorado

Last weekend, the wife and I went to Colorado, more specifically the Denver area, and the following is the adventures we had in the area, and those adventures started before we even arrived in Colorado.

On the drive from Wichita, Kansas where we live, to Colorado, we literally ran into a wall of rain, it was bright and sunny, then suddenly, it was dark and I could barely see 8 to 10 feet in front of my car, the car in front disappeared into the rain and I could no longer see it. I have never seen a wall of rain like this before. I have seen rain like this falling in the distance, but I have never driven into it… it’s scary shit!

We arrived at our hotel, the Renaissance Stapleton, in Denver at around 5pm, which confused us as we left Wichita about 10:30am and it was supposed to be an eight-hour drive, and we stopped for food for about 20 minutes. I was driving at the speed limit, plus 5mph, so 80mph with cruise control turned on. After wracking my brain, I finally realized that Denver is not central time, it was actually mountain time, so we had effectively lost an hour, which made sense as my phone and car time is set by GPS positioning.

The hotel was fine, nothing special, but decent for $119 + tax per night with our AAA discount. It was a good-sized room with a king-size bed, a separate sitting area, balcony and a 48″ smart TV and the bathroom was adequate with large stand up shower, and a cool backlit mirror with mountain etching.

After settling into our room, Erin and I decided to head downtown to find somewhere to eat, which didn’t happen as parking is a joke and what parking there was cost between $10 and $25 to park. So we gave up and headed back towards our hotel and found a little retail area which had a few restaurants. We ended up in a QDOBA Mexican Eats, which was fine, at this point, we just wanted to eat and go to bed.

The next day, Saturday, we headed towards Estes Park, with a view to driving up into the mountains at the Rocky Mountain National Park, but we took a wrong turn and ended up in Fort Collins, which was not our intention, but the drive was stunningly beautiful through the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.

We headed back to Estes Park for something to eat and we found a cute place on the river called Poppy’s Pizza & Grill, where we enjoyed a delicious burger. After this, we finally stumbled on the national park, but it was almost dark, so driving up the mountain was a no-go. However, the nice lady at the park entrance let us in for free, and gave us directions to the best spot to see the sunset over the mountains.

By the time we got back to the hotel, it was pitch dark and we were ready to hit the sack.

Sunday, we drove back up to Estes Park and took the correct turn to visit Rocky Mountain National Park and because the park was celebrating its 103rd birthday, entry was free, saving us $25, which I would have gladly paid, the views from the Trail Ridge Road which took us over 12,000ft above sea level was awe-inspiring, with several stops and parking areas to take in the beautiful views and snap some photos.

After spending 2 1/2 hours in the park, we headed back to Denver, for the reason we were in Colorado in the first place, to see Korn and Alice In Chains play live at the Pepsi Center. And Korn was freaking amazing, the bass wasn’t so much hitting you in the chest, it was more like the bass physically moving you. Alice in Chains also put on a great performance, although I have, personally not been a fan of the band.

Parking for the Pepsi Center was $25 (a Denver theme it seems), even for disabled patrons, which I paid begrudgingly. Inside the Pepsi Center on the floor, they had a tunnel for the cables from the sound and lighting desks, which was so steep that it really was inaccessible to wheelchair users, Erin had to get out of her wheelchair, for me to lift it over the tunnel. I have to ding the Pepsi Center for not considering wheelchair users. Someone unable to walk at all would be relegated to the back of the arena floor.

As a city, we really did not like Denver, however, we do like the Denver suburb of Boulder, which sits in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains. While we were in Colorado, we wanted to check out the area as we would like to move away from Wichita as we are seeking more nature, less flat Kansas city life, it’s currently between Boulder and Northwest Arkansas, after our son finishes high school in a few years.

Finally, on Monday, it was time to drive back home to Wichita, which was an uneventful drive, both Erin and I felt kinda flat, like Kansas, as we knew we were leaving the mountains that we loved so much. We are already planning on another visit to Colorado, next time, staying in Colorado Springs to explore the Pikes Peak mountain, which motorsports fans will know for the hill climb in outrageously powerful cars.

A final note on the Renaissance Stapleton hotel, on the final morning, twice, someone tried to enter our room, once at 8:20am, which woke me up, then again at 8:50am, while I was in the shower. Luckily, Erin put the security latch across in the middle of the night, which kept whoever it was out. It was too early for housekeeping, and housekeeping always knocks and waits 30 seconds before entering. We reported this to the woman at reception, and all we got was an “I’m sorry about that”, with no escalation, it seemingly doesn’t bother staff that someone had an active card to access our room while we were sleeping.

Have Something To Say About This Post? Please Comment Below!