My husband and I are blessed to live near Colorado and have a small piece of land with a teeny-tiny camper (post coming soon on "Why all couples should camp together.") We go on 3 to 4 small trips each summer and every time I am struck by the beauty and diversity of life there. There is also so much to do you would never get bored.
To me the mountains move and breathe and change and grow as you stand on them. You feel it in every puff of breeze, in every sound of the forest, in every glimpse of an animal, in every crunch of ancient rock under your feet. When we were there in June, little caterpillars - bag worms - dangled from every pine tree. When we returned in July, every tree instead fluttered with the tiny moths those caterpillars became.
The bare mountain tops above timberline are testament to the harshness of altitude. Yet, so many creatures - from the massive elk to the diminutive, delicate hummingbird - call these mountains home. Everything in God's wilderness lives by a rhythm and has its place.
Here are a few photos of what we encountered last weekend between Friday and Monday. If you ever get the chance to visit Colorado, it is well worth it and I believe you will not be disappointed.
|The dividing line above which trees cannot live - "above timberline" - is stunning.
|There is water EVERYWHERE. This is a stream up near 12,000 feet at Tincup Pass.
|Flower colors ranged from deep purple and bright red, to white & a spirited light pink-orange.
|A hummingbird above 10,000 feet. Our friends put out a feeder and they found it within minutes. How did they do that?
|Mama and baby ducks above 10,000 feet.
|Man has such an innate desire to see just how far he can go with Mother Nature. If it can be climbed, we will do it.
|When you are there, the mountains seem endless. Kansas is just a memory.
|Mountain goats! Real, live, wild mountain goats!
|Sunset at Cripple Creek, an old mining town turned gambling hamlet 44 miles southwest of Colorado Springs.
|Gopher, I think.
|A herd of elk just a few miles from our camper.
|My goodness, they are beautiful. We saw one stand up on its hind legs to reach leaves in a tree.
|The amusing place holder for a grave in Tincup cemetery, up above 10,000 feet. The 100-year-plus-old cemetery has a knoll for Jewish, Catholic, Protestant and then "Boot Hill" for those less ... er ... defined and rabble rousers. Old Ted is one of those. Mountain guys sure have a sense of humor. I guess you'd have to.