Jul 26, 2017

The First Hike


It is the end of our first week in Fort Collins. Bennett is wondering when we're going to do something "fun". Like moving across the country and unpacking all your belongings into a new townhouse isn't "fun" enough. However, the kids had done great with all the recent upheaval and all the packing and unpacking. We all needed a little fun. A nice hike in the foothills of our new mountains should be just the thing. So we set off for Horsetooth Mountain around 8:30am armed with hiking backpacks, sunscreen, and water. Just not enough air.



As we were driving to the park we saw some idiots walking up the street towards the park we were headed to. We mocked them, "Duh! You're supposed to hike on the trails people; not the street." Obviously, they didn't know as much as we did about hiking. Then five minutes later we pull into the park to park and are told there are no more open spots. "But," said the park ranger, "you can park a mile back down the hill and walk back up here."  Ohhhh....those people we just saw weren't idiots, they were fellow poor souls who got shoved to the 'bad' parking lot down the hill. Nobody wants to hike up a street on a hill a mile before actually starting their "real" hike. We were doomed from the start.


Here we are rounding our first bend on the real hike. We were already exhausted. We just climbed up a mountain, dodging dangerous cars on a bendy road and depleted half our water supply and even more of our oxygen reserves. Therefore, we chose to hike the "easy" path. There was no way we were going to hike for 4+ hours in this 90 degree heat on a moderate-hard path on our first weekend in Colorado. Those just aren't realistic goals people. 


Although the "easy" path was beautiful, it was not "easy". We were huffing and puffing and exerting mucho amounts of energy, sweat, and oxygen. We eventually came to a fork in the road. We could chose to go up farther to see the Horsetooth Falls from a higher elevation or go back down into the gully and see the Falls face on. This was a very hard decision for our weary and oxygen deprived brains. Going up meant more climbing and our legs were already cramping and throbbing. Going down meant we would have to climb up again and there was no way anyone was voting for that. So we decided that just hearing the Falls was enough for us. We've seen Niagara already...all falls are pretty much the same, right?! 


I think I have a picture of Chuck standing like this from every hike we've ever taken. This is his pose. Normally it also involves being on the edge of a large boulder, cliff or mountainside preferably with a terrifying drop-off just inches from his feet. 

And to top off our first adventure in Fort Collins, I hiked with a migraine the entire time. It was hard - very hard. But I wasn't about to take away everyone's fun. Granted, none of us could move the rest of the day. We laid on the sofa, the floor, the bed...anywhere...we just had to lay. We paid for that "easy" hike the rest of the day. But hey, we had fun!

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