At a Mile High

We spend a day in Lander, take a hike up Sinks Canyon to see the frozen falls, eat enormous burgers at the Lander Bar.  Alongside the local cowboys, we watch Olympic figure skating and cringe as Sean White takes fourth.
It’s windy as Hell as we head South on Hwy 287.  The road is closed to “light weight vehicles” and the rest stops are full of semis, waiting it out.
After a night in Laramie, we cross into Colorful Colorado at 11:03 am.  The odometer reads 1053.
In Denver, we stay with Karlie.  We’ve known each other since middle school and she’s letting us stay as long as we’d like.
On Valentine’s Day we drive to Rocky Mountain National Park.  A sign reads “In case of flood climb to safety”.  We see sunken houses, boarded windows, bull dozers and trees with exposed, bare roots.  We learn that 18 inches of rain fell between September 11 and 13 of last year.  The park had to be evacuated and the eastern entrances were inaccessible due to the devastation of the flood.
Herds of elk graze beneath towering mountains.  It’s 36° and snowing lightly.  We’ve got the park to ourselves.  We cook ribeye steaks for dinner and make a nest in the back of the car, drinking wine and playing chess.
In the morning, it’s too windy to make coffee or cook bacon.  We pack up the car and drive out of the park as a stream of cars enter.

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