Thursday, July 12, 2012

Catch up - Monday's drive through the Rockies to Rifle

Monday we left Cherry Creek State Park, outside Denver, and took I-70  through the heart of the Rocky Mountains to Rifle.  We absolutely love the Denver area, there is so much to do and such beautiful scenery.  Its one of the places we'll come back to for a longer look.  Side note for Tom - this is where all the old Previa's come to live our their lives!  We lost count.

As I said before, the drive on I-70 was stunning.  Its one everybody should take at some point.  The scale of the landscape is difficult to describe and even more difficult to photograph (for an amateur like me). I was clicking off shots through the windshield left and right, not caring whether there were bugs in the way, or that the light wasn't good.  I couldn't control myself!  

the grades were incredible - Beluga was really working

glad we didn't need this, I don't know how you'd get back down!

many of the sheer cliffs were draped in chain mail to keep falling rock from "slowing" our progress

evidence of the pine beetle was everywhere, sad...

we had lunch at 9500 ft. above sea level in another "chain up" pull off.  They seemed to be the only flat spaces available to us and we were happy to have them!

just one of so many ski areas,  I don't remember whether it was Vail, Steamboat, Breckenridge, etc. etc.  They were all represented.

places along the highway really show how these great mountains came to be

the rock formations changed character the further west we drove.  this is as we entered Glen Canyon

sorry about the exposure and the bugs on the windshield....but we always laugh about how all the services jostle together  in the tiny canyon space the Colorado River makes available to us humans.  trains, power lines, highways.  In Glen Canyon there isn't much room, so I-70 has to spit into upper and lower tiers.

I don't know who was more tired at the end of this long day, Beluga or Dave.  It was a pretty intense experience.  And then we pulled into Rifle Falls State Park, very much looking forward to some rest and quiet.   You know how that turned out!

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