Since we couldn’t check in at our next stop in Colorado Springs until 1pm and we only had a 2 ½ hour drive, we headed out to breakfast before leaving. What a cold and rainy morning. And not a lot of choices in Raton for breakfast…for sure! So we headed to McDonald’s, which we like for breakfast, and found out that they just opened the previous night. Talk about new!
Then we were on our way. Since we had to go up the Raton pass which is extremely steep (you might remember that last year we came down it…definitely a white knuckle adventure in the RV!), we decided that I’d drive the car instead of having the RV tow it. We do this once in a while if it’s a steep, long climb. So we were each off in our own vehicles with Rocky being the navigator in the RV. (Thank goodness we have a GPS. He just directs us to dog parks and dog bakeries!). We met at the top of the mountain in Trinidad, CO and hooked up the car. We were off to Colorado Springs.
We’re staying in a different RV park this time than we usually do and found it to be much nicer. I think it was worth the extra money. They even have a little dog park and it’s right across the street from where we are parked. So Rocky went out to play with a HUGE German Shepherd and had a little fun.
Then we were off to Manitou Springs, which is just up the road. We walked through the shops and because it’s so early in the season, the town seemed to be full of young adults and not tourists. I liked the summer crowd better as all these young adults seemed very odd….maybe a little too much legalized marijuana???
We went to an early dinner at Savelli’s our favorite Italian restaurant in town and had a fabulous meal, as usual. The last time we were here was when we drove to Denver to pick up Rocky, so it’s been a while. Then of course, we had to go to our favorite ice cream shop for dessert. We even got Rocky a couple treats for being such a good boy in the car all afternoon.
I am hoping to work off all those calories tomorrow, as my line dance workshop starts. We have a dance tomorrow evening, which will be fun and then 3 days of workshop classes. I’m really looking forward to it.
But before my evening of dancing, we decided to visit the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. What an interesting tour! The hopeful Olympic and Paralympic athletes train here and we got to see the wrestlers, shooters, swimmers and volley ball athletes training. It really was a fun tour.
Then we walked through Old Colorado City. Some of the shops had changed and it was fun to visit this area again.
That evening, I went to our first social dance for the dance workshop I came here to attend. I got there a little early and was talking to someone I just met when Eugene from Denver walked in. I met Eugene last time I came to this workshop 4 years ago and I couldn’t believe he remembered me. Just like last time, we spent a lot of the weekend line dancing together. It was so much fun to see him again.
Then I met Sharon and Gloria from Colorado Springs. I took a few classes here when we’ve been in town and they also both remembered me from the last workshop. It was so great to see them again.
The choreographers started arriving and then the real fun started. It was good to see some I knew and meet some of the new additions. I even saw Bracken Eillis from San Diego, who I used to dance with about 10 years ago. What a nice surprise.
Before we knew it, we were dancing from 7pm until almost midnight. Then I had to get home and sleep since classes started at 9am.
I had a fabulous, fun, exhausting 3 days of dance classes during the day and social dancing at night. Saturday night was a wild party! The choreographers did a really hysterical skit and then we danced until almost 1 a.m. Dancing over 12 hours a day was exhausting but also very exhilarating. I was really sorry to see it end.
Sunday night I absolutely crashed. Then Monday morning, we packed some clothes and Rocky’s necessities and headed to Salida, CO to visit with friends, Rufus and Kitty, from Texas at their summer home. It took us about 2 ½ hours to get there but it was a beautiful drive over the pass….pretty chilly up there!
But when we arrived in Salida, it was in the 60’s and just beautiful.
Rocky and Ranger played hard in the back yard and were so excited to see each other again. Kitty set up 2 huge crates in the family room and after they exhausted themselves, they went in their crates and we headed off to a local burger place for dinner. Great food!
The next morning, Jay and Rufus went riding up to the base of the mountains while Kitty and I shopped in downtown, Salida. Then we met them at the Princeton Resort for lunch. We had a great lunch on the patio and then the guys started their 25 mile ride back.
Kitty and I waited for them at several spots on the way home since the wind was extremely strong and gusty. We even saw Rufus and Jay get blown off the side of the road! But the guys hung in there and made it all the way. Jay even made it up the very, very steep hill to the house! Yeah! Now he and all his bike buddies from Sun City have completed this achievement.
After relaxing a while and watching the dogs play again, we took a drive up to Monarch Pass, which is one of the Continental Divide areas in Colorado. There was snow up there and it was cold. Rufus told us that they get 500 inches of snow up there. YIKES!! After our drive up the mountain, we headed out to dinner to a wonderful Italian restaurant.
The following morning, we all went out to breakfast (except the dogs) then Rufus, Jay and I played golf at the Salida Golf Course. LOTS of fun. We came back to the house for lunch and unfortunately, it was time for us to leave.
Rocky and Ranger are definitely going to miss one another. They played so hard, that Rocky never got out of bed once we got home. The two of them wrestled, chased each other and were just best friends the whole time. They really had a great time.
We took a different route home and it was really beautiful as we paralleled the Arkansas River for a good portion of the drive. The mountains and red rocks were just gorgeous. Colorado is definitely a beautiful state, especially in this area.
Well, time for us to head out. We’ve been here just over a week and it’s time to take our memories and move on.
On to Fort Collins, CO for the Memorial Day weekend. Goodbye Colorado Springs and Salida. We had a ball!!