Some sights inspire, and must be captured. With the camera and the pen. On Elkhorn Road headed North toward Como, CO and headed straight for a mountain range, the tired and weather-beaten old asphalt is framed in spring by spunky yellow wildflowers. It’s breathtaking.
The Grill-Meister went out of his way to help me get this photo, waiting patiently until there were no cars, giving me advice on the angle, etc. It’s an imperfect representation of what we saw, but…can you feel yourself being pulled toward a bright and unexpected future, on this road lined with bright yellow wildflowers?
Anything could be possible up ahead. Anything.
Haiku: The Road to…
the yellow road to endless possibilities – what lies ahead?
Nature is all the entertainment we need here at Little House in the Rockies, our little cabin in Central Colorado. It’s a wonderful getaway from the busyness and frenetic pace of everyday life, an oasis of mindfulness.
This morning, our entertainment was a rabbit, a cute little Peter Cottontail who hopped up to enjoy the seeds the careless birds were strewing from the feeder.
He was a shy little thing.
He hopped away when I approached with my camera, but I caught him mid-jump.
Rabbit, run! (No reference to the John Updike novel intended; well, not much, anyway.)
the simple pleasures of mountains and hummingbirds feed my hungry soul
The haiku above sprung into being because the Grill-Meister and I are back at Little House in the Rockies for the Memorial Day weekend, where absolute peace and tranquility abound. The aspen trees dance in the gentle breeze with their young, bright green leaves, and birds of all kinds sing their unique odes to spring. The mountains we can see from the back porch still glisten with snow on their stately and imposing peaks. It is impossible to be grumpy here. Nature is a restorative and sustaining force. (This is a common theme here in the Glover Gardens blog.)
I love, love, love being in the mountains; there is so much variety in the weather. Here are two versions of the view from the back porch of Little House in the Rockies, close-ups of the mountain range behind us. What a difference a day made!
A winter storm dominated the view in the first photo, and only Palmer Peak is visible. The snow-filled sky cloaks the higher summits of Mount Silverheels behind it.
The next afternoon, the broad expanse of this part of the Front Range is exposed, with Palmer Peak dominated by the higher mountaintops behind it.
A snowstorm came and went between these two photos, and we were snug and warm in our little cabin, watching.
Watching the storm roll in, watching the snow hide the mountains, watching the birds take a few last seeds from the feeder.
I love it in the spring, summer, fall and winter. Although I haven’t noticed that much difference between the spring, summer and fall – it can snow like crazy in any of those seasons. A sage local once told me that he’s seen snow in every month in Colorado, multiple times.
I’ve had the distinct privilege of being in Colorado many times each year since 2013, because we have a tiny little cabin in Jefferson. But I’ve never been here during the prime viewing season for aspens changing color.
We planned our trip this fall with military precision. Web sites told us that peak fall color would take place the last week in September, and we were on it.
Plane reservations? Check.
Tickets for the fall color train ride? Check.
We were all set. And then we had our Blizzard on a Train adventure on the Leadville Colorado & Southern Railroad, while in search of our blazing fall colors. We definitely had an adventure, an experience that we’ll remember for a lifetime, but not the fall color experience we were looking for. We missed it by a week, because these things happen in Colorado. Mother Nature decides to get a bit colder than usual in the Collegiate Peaks area, and the aspens dutifully shed their leaves.
Undeterred, we set out today for a trek around Jefferson Lake. It was lovely. You can enjoy it with us here: Hiking Around Jefferson Lake in Autumn. But it was not the fall color mecca, either.
On the way home to Little House in the Rockies from Jefferson Lake, the closer we got, the more the landscape lit up with aspens strutting their stuff. The Girl Who’s Always Hungry said, “My eyes are happy!” She nailed it.
Enjoy it with us, this bounty of beauty we found, right in our own backyard in Indian Mountain, our Little House in the Rockies “neighborhood”.
This very last photo (above) is, quite literally, our “front yard” here at Little House in the Rockies. Our aspens are a little slow to turn golden, but the overall effect is quite nice. And our “back 40” is below, with the impending storm rolling in.
When we are at Little House in the Rockies, we try to take in as much of the wonderful central Colorado environment around us as possible.
Today we visited Jefferson Lake, our first time in the fall weather. It is a beautiful, calm body of water nestled high among 12K+ mountains in the South Park National Heritage Area. We’ve been there before, in the cold, cold summer (we saw snow on the ground during 4th of July week in 2014), but hadn’t done the full hike or seen the fall colors.
This is a worthwhile trip! The 1.5 mile trail that circles the lake might be called an “easy hike” by experienced hikers, but I think “moderate” is a better term. There’s an easy part, but about half of the trail requires a little more endurance and careful footing – and hiking boots, definitely.
If you decide to do the whole circle of the trail, start on the more challenging side by going to the left and traversing the trail clockwise. When you get to the furthest point from the start, you’ll be able to walk along the “beach”, and it is all downhill from there (figuratively; it’s actually pretty flat for the second half). The whole trail hike took us about 2 hours, which included many, many photo-op stops, as you can see.