Majestic Mountains (May 13-20, 2019)
May 13th we rolled into Colorado. It is a beautiful drive from Santa Fe to Colorado Springs on I-25…I actually stayed awake this time! The drive was quite long and when you tack on the slow fuel guzzling diesel tank, it was one of our longest stretches since the mad dash to New York last September. Originally, we had planned on splitting the drive in 2 days but our friend was heading to the field the next day and we didn’t want to miss him so we hunkered down for a 5 hour drive. I know some people think a 5 hour drive isn’t much to bitch about, but don’t forget that the full rig is about 60’ long, the Glamper is more like a Shaky Shack while moving, and I get motion sickness. Luckily, the Garden of the Gods RV Resort had a spot we could hook up to for the night even though our check-in wasn’t until the next day. The RV Park is one of those places that has just about anything you need but you are packed in like sardines. Ted and I agree that we both prefer lots of space around the RV, we love staying in State Parks but most of them dont have a Full Hook Up site (Full Hook Up, aka FH is water, sewer and electric at your site). The first thing I did in Colorado was visit a Cannaboutique. Yeah, Emerald Fields is pretty awesome! Our first night in Colorado Springs was spent with our friend before he went to go freeze his butt off in the field. We had a lovely dinner at the Edelweiss restaurant. It was great to be in a setting we were all familiar with and the German food was delicious!
May 14th was adulting and family day. I started off very ambitious and attended a Cycling class at 8:45am. I just quit smoking a week ago (yet again), Colorado Springs is at 6000 feet above sea level, I haven’t worked out hard in well over a week, I’m wheezing just walking to the car…annnnnddd Hello Cardio Coughs! It was an awesome class but I was smoked! We washed the Glamper in and out, sent off Azlan’s passport, mailed some things, donated some things, meal planned, grocery shopped, got a ‘new’ movie and spent the evening resting and indulging in pizza. If you haven’t seen Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron yet, I highly recommend it. It’s a great cartoon for the whole family. Someone reading this is probably thinking ‘why not just download or stream a movie’…well, the wi-fi service in some places is really crappy. Verizon works fine, but we have AT&T. Most of the time AT&T works just fine…not here though. On Wednesday, May 15th I went to Zumba on Fort Carson. Hello Cardio Coughs, Take Two. Great class but again, I’m smoked. That afternoon we hung out with friends, visited the Garden of the Gods and had Crockpot Cashew Chicken, Snap Peas and Brown Rice that I prepared. This whole time, I’m feeling really winded and coughing a lot. It must be horrible to feel out of breath all the time (so sorry Mema). On Thursday we took the Jeep up Gold Camp Road for a little off roading through some tunnels. It’s more of a local spot and we didn’t know what to expect other than some beautiful views. We encountered Helen Hunt Falls where we proceeded on a short hike. It’s not even a mile and I don’t think I made it halfway. Conveniently Ted has lived at altitude before and was able to get to the end. Our next adventure was to Pike’s Peak at an altitude of 14,115’. I slept the whole way up and awoke feeling like I was gasping for air. Talk about a breathtaking vista – Literally! This is about the altitude you skydive from…very, very high up. I’m just glad I had gotten in some cardio before checking out the top of this mountain. Even Ted got a little loopy. We had some snacks and quickly bolted after pictures. Not only was breathing hard, but it was cold as balls too! As we headed back down the mountain, we started feeling better, stopping at several points for pictures and to admire these Majestic Mountains. The song ‘America the Beautiful’ was written based on the visual appeal of this place. Unfortunately, we never spotted Big Foot though.
Friday morning I woke up in a lethargic haze. Despite my desire to stay in bed, I went to Zumba. It was the slowest I have ever been in a Zumba class, I shall attribute this to altitude sickness. Ted and Azlan checked out the library multiple times this week while I was in class. As soon as we got back to the Glamper, I went back to bed and slept for 4 hours straight without shifting in bed at all. I woke up feeling like a whole new person. Who knew all I needed was a short, day-time hibernation session 😊 That afternoon we visited with a friend and then spent some time walking around the RV park.
Saturday, May 18th, I flew out of bed at 100% energy and took it out on another Zumba class. For the amount of classes offered alone, I love Fort Carson! In the afternoon we had our habitual festivities. This time people trickled in and out through the evening which worked out because the weather was all over the place! We had sun, rain, snow, hail, wind all in the span of a few hours. Nuts! It was great to see Ted’s brothers in arms and meet their families.
Sunday was spent inside most of the day as Azlan had a fever. While puttering, Ted was contacted for some RV advice. His response is below for reference.
“Wow, thanks! Not sure about master, but we’ve been on the road for a little over eight months. A few apps that will help...AllStays, AllTrails and Trucker Path. AllStays will tell you every known RV Park and what amenities they offer, to include where to get propane, fuel etc. very useful! AllTrails is a hiking app, if you are into that. Gives trails everywhere in the US, we love it! Truckers Path is an unknown commodity, a friend that is a trucker gave me this idea, but we haven’t used it. He tells me you can put you height, width and weight into it and it will not put you on a road that violates those known quantities. We have had a couple close calls, but still not opted to try it. When are you doing this? If it’s through the summer, you better start booking places you intend to stay now, we did it in late March early April and had some tough bookings, particularly in Colorado, and Wyoming for Yellowstone. Best advice is pick a northern route for one way and a southern route for the other, you’ll see more this way. A rhythm that works for us is to stay in each place roughly a week, this may sound long but constantly being in the road is tough. It’s stressful driving these damn things!!! Have you taken the RV out before? If not, be prepared for shit to go wrong...it’s usually not catastrophic, but aggravating. You pay huge amounts of money for these things, but when you shake them down the road at 70 mph things come apart. Breathe. Lots of National parks and cool stuff to see along I-90, we are about to hit that in early June and really looking forward to it. Some favorite places are Petit Jean State Park in Arkansas, near I-40. Big Bend National Park in SW Texas, not close to anything...I snuck into Mexico and back. I really liked the Chattanooga and West N.C. mountains area. Let me know if you have some more specific questions, I’ll answer what I can. I hope you guys have a great trip and get to see the country!”
I want to add this book as well “Living the RV Life – Your Ultimate Guide to Life on the Road”. It’s a fantastic book with loads of info! I only wish I had read it before we started our plan to even buy an RV – instead I learned most of it the hard way. We are always open to answering any questions or giving advice! This lifestyle comes with a lot of parts, pieces and surprises so don’t hesitate to ask!
Luckily Azlan’s fever broke overnight and he is back to his normal, talkative, energetic self again. I think the altitude affected him too. Ted and Azlan visited the Fort Carson museum this morning at Azlan's suggestion. They were supposed to go to the library, but its closed Mondays, so Ted asked Azlan "what should we do instead". With no recommendations Azlan's response was "A museum." #parentingwin The museum was small but well laid out and very interesting. While they explored 4th Infantry Division history, I’m very proud to say that I crushed another Zumba class this morning…but this time… no coughs, no wheezing, no leaving class to catch my breath --- Good Bye Cardio Coughs! With all the exercise I’ve done this week, I am feeling great…now if I can only keep it up! Not everywhere we go will have gyms and classes I can go to without having a membership. I’m going to stay on top of it though. Crying, Falling, Failing, Bleeding, Hurting, Sweating are totally ok….giving up is NOT!
Next stop: Denver! Stay tuned for the subsequent week-cap!
Daisa, Ted and Azlan