Greetings! I thought I’d write one final [short] post to wrap up our trip. Thanks to everyone for your patience as I’ve been working to get posts published.
Home // Independence Day
Once back in Granite Falls, we crashed for a long nap, and then grilled some steaks for a patriotic meal with my parents. In the afternoon, we drove back up the mountain, dropped off our luggage, and then immediately headed over to Valle Crucis for Faith’s family’s gigantic annual celebration. We saw a beautiful sunset (and a double rainbow the next night), but headed out before the fireworks started so we could unpack and get ready for work the next day. It was a busy week (thus why this blog is very delayed), capped off with Faith playing as the featured musician at the Watauga County Farmers’ Market.
Here are some final thoughts from our trip:
Isaac – “I couldn’t believe how different the landscape was on each side of Pike’s Peak; Colorado Springs is very red and southwestern-looking, while Woodland Park was very green and similar to Montana and Wyoming. I was also surprised by the size of Garden of the Gods – it looks much bigger in person than in pictures.”
Faith – “Pike’s Peak was more magnificent and beautiful than I thought it would be. I also didn’t think I would enjoy mustard ice cream, but it was tasty.”
Isaac – “The waterfall failures were pretty sad. I wish we’d had enough time to go to the alligator place near the dunes. There were a couple restaurants I would’ve liked to try in Colorado Springs – maybe on a future trip.”
Faith – “The hike with the wet rock was pretty underwhelming.”
Things Worth Doing a Second Time
Isaac – “I would definitely go back to Great Sand Dunes National Park and explore more of the dune field, and some of the trails up in the mountains.”
Faith – “I would go back to Great Sand Dunes and the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.”
Things To Do Differently
Isaac – “I would try to spend more time hiking outside of Colorado Springs. While all the trails had beautiful views, many of them (particularly the trails close to town) are basically a greenway with exceptional views. While I enjoyed relaxing more, I think I won’t take another plan-free trip in the future…I like to know my options better.”
Faith – “I’d carry lip balm in our hiking backpacks.”
Isaac – “I enjoyed Great Sand Dunes, and the drive down there. All the hikes were nice; it was great to spend a week getting some fresh air after spending so much time moving. It was neat just to see the area and finally be able to visualize what I’ve heard so many people talk about. It was good to spend some quality time with Ian and Abby – we hadn’t really gotten to do that since we’ve been married.”
Faith – “My favorite things were watching the sunset at the Sand Dunes, playing with the twins, spending time with Ian and Abby, and going to Colonel Mustard’s with Isaac.” [Insert by Isaac – Faith also enjoys vacations because she knows that means daily fancy coffee drinks.”]
Here are our favorite restaurants/foods from the trip:
Faith – “My favorites were the Salvadoran food, Dutch Bros, Josh & John’s, and the steaks that Ian grilled.”
Isaac – [in no particular order] – “Colonel Mustard’s Sandwich Emporium, Monse’s Pupseria, In-N-Out, Nightingale Bakery, Josh & John’s ice cream, and Wimberger’s Bakery”
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Coming later this year…two trips to Texas, a weekend drive through Kentucky and West Virginia, and possibly some other travel! Dad, some friends, and I are going to Texas to watch sports and consume brisket (twice!), and again to WV for football and a national park.
– Isaac and Faith