Memorial Day, in theory a day for Americans to remember and salut the services provided by war veterans to the US society, in practice a very good excuse to go camping and having a weekend long barbeque.
I have never before had the privilege to celebrate Memorial day, so I can without a doubt say that this year’s Memorial day weekend was the best I ever had. However, even IF I had had the opportunity to celebrate it before, I’m pretty damn sure I would still say that this one was the best. What could be better than a weekend filled with hard rocks, pink snow, cold water, hot water, scorching sun, small Corky dogs, a gargantuan mixed breed dog, eagles, vultures, and most importantly, sleeping in Larry, briliant company, a whole lot of laughter, barbeque and beer?
Thanks a million Jenn, Maciej, Nat, Brian, Amanda, Decker, Blue, Skye and Jewels for lending me a shit ton of gear so that I could join, and for simply offering the best company a girl could ask for! I like Memorial Day weekend. Can I come back and spend it next year too?
Ok ok, so I have to write something more about what we actually did. We started off by riding our bikes in Fort Collins. Our aim was to bike the Mills Creek Trail, but looking at the map, I think we missed it. YEY! That means that there are even more fun trails out there to discover! Instead of doing Mills Creek, I’m pretty sure we did the Spring Creek trail, climbed back up on the Stout Trail and then headed down the Sawmill trail, neither of which is labeled as advanced. They do however, contain seriously fun downhill riding, including fast flowy parts, rocky parts, some roots, and a whole lot of switch backs. It was FUN, so fun that I will happily forget the climb up Towers trail. Natalie of course climbed the whole thing without putting down her feet. In another life I would of course have done the same.. precisely as I, in another life, would be the fastest one down. Now I got the privelege of seeing the back of Jenn, Brian and Natalie as they were swooshing down the mountain like mountain goats. Not a bad view at all. My own slowness did however severly reduce my ability to snap photos that make the ride justice.
After our little mtb excursion, we headed back to Wyoming, collected our thoughts and camping gear (or for some of us, other collected our camping gear, no names mentioned), and headed up to the Medicine Bow area to camp. I of course forgot to ask where we were going to camp, so when I and Natalie lost sight of the others, we hadn’t a clue on where to go. No harm done, we spent an hour of a very interesting driving along dissapearing roads, closed camping sites with dead trees, and then a well deserved beer at the Bear Tree in Centennial listening to some cover band doing Neil Young songs, before we finally decided that the other MAYBE had headed to the other side of the mountain range and drove over. Of course they had. Jenn and Maciej had spend 1.5 hours waiting for us at the junction… Just a tiiiny bit embarrassing.. But sausage and beer has never tasted as good. And then, I got to do my premier night in Larry. It was, of course, awesome. Ok ok, yes, I was freezing, and I didnt have a pillow so my neck got all fucked up, but still, mmm Larry’s lard ass was MADE for sleeping in.
On Sunday morning, we got up at 6, had bagels with smoked salmon and cream cheese for breakfast and then headed up to Medicine bow for some spring skiing. Decker the giant dog had the time of his life running up those hills 8 times while we did the same thing twice before the snow rotted. The snow is no longer brilliant, but skiing under a bright blue sky with no wind and in great company certainly still is.
We spent our after ski in terms of kayaking down the The North Platte River to Saratoga. I must say that floating down a river in the company of zoologists make it to my top 3 things (the other two being skiing and mountainbiking with the same people) to do on a Sunday in the Rockies. I think we saw Bald eagle, Red tailed hawk, Osprey, Turkey Vulture, Golden eagle and, what more? I dont remember, but it was FANTASTIC. Oh yeah, we saw the nests of the swallows on the river bank and that was cool too. I got wet as a drenched cat, partly because the platte is pretty un flat i some sections, and partly because of some water wars. The water comes straight from the mountains, the mountains on which we had skied the same morning, so it was cooold. Didnt matter since we ended our journey by taking a bath in the hot (and free) springs in Saratoga. Yes I said it, life is not fair at all. Right now, it seems as if Im getting all the good stuff. Every one deserves to spend their late afternoons in hot water that smells like fart.
We ended the day with goat cheese, avocado, bacon burgers and beer, and of course, with another night in Larry. Ah Larry, how will I ever be able to leave you?