Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Welcome to Colorful Colorado

Saturday dawned clear and bright. The pied piper skies beckoned us toward the great outdoors and without a second thought we loaded up in the car and headed out. We didn't have far to drive (just thirty minutes!) before we were in sight of vistas that are quite breathtaking (but then many are!)
The peaks in the distance are snow-capped but the temperatures break records. A winter with little snow leaves this semi-arid climate mostly brown when it should be greening in abundance. Fire danger is already high and a careless cigarette could result in evacuation.

I gaze out at the Flatirons, amazed at the wedge shaped features behind me. Their sharp angles in contrast to the mountains beyond. They earn their name from pioneer women who felt they resembled an upended household flatiron. (the likeness more obvious when viewed farther north in central Boulder- like in this picture)

 Consisting of a similar rock (conglomerate sandstone) as the aforementioned Red Rocks amphitheater, the uplifted earth reveals stories that are nearly 300 million years in the making: the dinosaurs that roamed here, the sealife that hatched. Tales that are written in stone and will endure longer than the humans that would come along to read the biography.

  It was a busy day on the trail- the trail abuzz with conversation and bicyclists straining. The first really warm spring day awakens the hibernating Coloradans from the winter doldrums in a wave of outdoor frenzy. And warm it was, shattering the previous high temperature by 6 degrees, topping out at 84!
click on the picture to get the effect of this panorama 
But in true Colorado fashion, the weather did an about-face as swiftly as a marching band. The next day there were snowflakes fluttering to the ground! Much needed moisture but a change so dramatic that one might be excused for fearing they'd been transported to another planet.
But that is what makes Colorado so colorful- not the green landscape as they might try to advertise- (it remains brown for most of the year except for the spring and only then if we've had enough snow) but the weather.   

7 comments:

  1. Yay for Colorado! I'm near Colorado Springs. Two days ago I built a snowman in my backyard with my 2-year-old and yesterday we went to the park in short-sleeved shirts. Pretty cool :)

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  2. These are stunning! Photos like this remind me of just how teeny tiny Britain is, lol. Thanks for sharing.

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  3. Stunning shots.. the air is so blue and clear - almost luminous!

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  4. That sky is SO blue, love it. It made me wonder what it would be like to camp out there overnight, in a sleeping bag underneath that sky on a clear night - that would probably be amazing with all the starts out. Ever done it ?

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  5. Jess: In 2003 we had a snow storm at the end of March (3 feet!) that shut everything down for nearly a week. Were you around for that one? March can be pretty snow which is one reason it's so dry, but I wasn't sad that it was so pretty myself.

    Lucy: The mountains and nearby plains dwarf just about everything. Denver looks pretty small as well!

    Ladyfi: The skies in Colorado can be stunningly blue!

    Zella: I used to camp quite a lot in the mountains and it is quite amazing at night- not just the stars but the quiet. I am not as into camping these days but I have lovely memories of sitting by the fire and looking up at night skies...

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  6. Wow! I loved that panoramic view, quite the photographer my dear. ;-)) Hope your week has been good! Almost Friday - YAH!!

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  7. Talei: Thank you! I do try! I'm working Saturday but still looking forward to the weekend.

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