Last day of my vacation. My original plan was to head toward Idaho springs to drive to the top of Mt Evans and then see Arapaho Falls and Boulder Falls before heading to the airport to return my car by 10:00PM. Mt Evans is famous for mountain goat sightings and I really want to see them. I’m disappointed to report that I did not see any though. Probably because it was middle of the day. It took a couple of hours to get to the top. Mt Evans is one of CO’s 54 “14ers” meaning it’s over 14,000 ft elevation. The tallest mountain in the United States is in Alaska. In the lower 48 states, Mt Evans is the 2nd tallest at 14,265 following Mt Whitney in CA. It’s the highest paved road in North America. The view is amazing! When you find yourself looking down at the snow-topped Rocky Mountains in July/August, you know you are up high! When I came down off the mountain and I was supposed to go 5 minutes to the west to get back on Interstate 70, but I decided the road to the east was pretty and took that way which ended up being another National Forrest road that took me way south of where I was originally planning to go. I ended up near Evergreen and stopped at a McDonald’s to get my bearings and figure out my route.
My friend, Jimmy was in Colorado fishing with his nephew. I had known he was there but we hadn’t been successful in hooking up. I had texted him the day before to say I was going to Mt Evans next day but I guessed he had no cell signal as I never got a reply. When I got to the McDonald’s he texted me and asked if I was still near Mt Evans. I told him that I had just come down from it an hour ago but had taken alternate route and ended up way south of where I meant to be and told him my approx location. He texted back that he was 6 miles away at his nephew’s house in Evergreen! How funny! If I hadn’t taken the “wrong” road I would have been an hour north by then, somewhere near Boulder! So I went there and got to hang out with Jimmy and his nephew’s family who fed me a delicious dinner of fresh caught trout and various yummy side dishes. It was by far the tastiest and healthiest meal I’d had all week and much appreciated!
Jimmy’s flight was leaving Denver at 9:00. Mine wasn’t till 1:00 am but I had to return the car by 10:00pm. It worked out well so we stayed there until time to head to the airport. I dropped him off and then returned my car. After I went through security I found him at his gate and we hung out there till time to depart. It was a great close to fantastic 8 day vacation! But it wasn’t over yet after all! I got a bonus day in Philadelphia due to my connecting flight being cancelled and re-scheduled which ended up being such a cool adventure, I have to include it in the story…