Thursday, September 29, 2011

Leaf Peeping

For the final trip of my Summer vacations, Shaya and I traveled up to Aspen, through Vail and Leadville. We stayed with our friend Jen and met her new baby Trace, where we encountered a freak accident with my suitcase. It was dark our when we unpacked the car, and when we got inside I realized I left my (black) suitcase outside. In the two minutes it took me to go back outside, Jen's friend had left her house and took my suitcase with her as she drove away. Surprisingly it held up - my camera was on the outside pocket! Whew.

I just love these old Colorado mountain towns, with the Opera House and Saloon still standin. Leadville is home to the famous "Leadville 100", a 100 mile trail run race for the stupid, I mean, hard core. We also came across the 10th Mountain Division memorial.

10th Mountain Division is a
light infantry division of the U.S. Army that specializes in fighting under harsh terrain and weather conditions. Activated in 1943, the 10th Mountain Division was the last among currently active divisions to enter combat during World War II. The 10th fought in the mountains of Italy in some of the roughest terrain in the country.


The colors along Independence Pass and in Aspen were so crisp and yellow that it felt like we were in a post card. We stayed two nights in the town of Aspen, and hiked up to the Maroon Bells. Aspen is a lovely small town. We spent some time with the owner of our hotel, who has lived there several years, and he gave us the grand reality check about the "real" Aspen - basically lots of filthy rich live there, but it's really only five big weeks a year that it sees the famous celebrities. I loved Aspen because it is built around its town history, and not around the ski industry. Every block has sweet, charming, historical homes and lots of mature trees and trails. When I asked Skip about the winter (thinking, wow I could really live here), he said "oh, it's so awesome, the ski lift is open from November through May". Uh, that's really not so awesome. That's a long winter and I want nothing to do with that!

Now that Summer vacation is over... what's next?

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