The Stellers Jay of Oregon has given way to the Black-Billed Magpie of Colorado. We are on top of a mountain. One that was burned by a forest fire only 13 years ago. The aspen, pines, and firs are young, but that means we have a 360 view of the surrounding mountains. The winds picked up and blew the local forest fire smoke back our way. What a few days ago was blue skies and a sharp horizon of Rocky Mountains is now covered by a sheen; a hazy, clouded silouhette of the giants that you forget are a part of the ground, not the sky. Every day we wake up to more aspen leaves having shifted to their seasonal yellow. They are changing right before our eyes, small pockets turning into completely lit hillsides, partially dotted trees now fully enveloped in the yellow wash.
- We stayed: Snow Mountain Ranch
- We played: Rocky Mountain National Park, driving Trail Ridge Road, the Snow Mountain Ranch Property (swimming, put put, climbing wall, archery, arts and crafts, bike park, the best playground ever, horseback riding)
- We hiked: Snow Mountain Ranch Waterfall Trail, Nine Mile Mountain
- We fished: Moraine Park (our all-time favorite fishing spot), Gaylord Reservoir
- We enjoyed: Miyauchi’s Snack Bar (Grand Lake)
- We are reading: A Severe Mercy (Sheldon Vanauken)
- We are listening to: Sturgill Simpson’s version of Nirvana’s In Bloom