Sorry for the delay in getting this posted. It wasn't intentional; time just got away from me, and I'd still rather work on "my" computer (the old desktop) than "Shane's" computer (the new laptop). The new one is faster, but I'm faster on this old one.
I shared some of Day 5's pictures with you in the last post. That was Monday morning, when we drove up to the summit of Pikes Peak. Poor Shane! He had a bit of altitude sickness at the top. So did my BFF when we went a couple of decades ago. I'm not going to say that I don't feel the altitude, it was noticeable both times I've been to the summit, but just not enough to bother me for a short stay.
After we came back down to the in-laws' house, I took off on my own for a while and drove to the south side of Denver to meet Tug. We've been cyber friends for a few years now and we figured since I was in the neighborhood, relatively speaking, we should take the opportunity to meet. We had a great lunch at a place called Rock Bottom Brewery. I broke my "no chain restaurants" rule for this one, since I'd never been to one, and because I had read they brew their beers on site.
Now, we each had our waiter take pictures of us together, but all of them on my camera were blurry. I'd blame it on the camera, but since Tug says none of hers came out, either, we're going to blame it on the waiter. But I did have my priorities in order and was able to get some good shots of the food.
|My shrimp and lobster tacos.|
|Tug's shrimp and lobster sandwich.|
|Me, in the Tug Bug.|
Later that night, we celebrated Kat's birthday by having some cake, ice cream and a few gifts...
|Kat blowing out the candles on her strawberry/angel food/jello cake.|
And finished off the night by climbing up on the roof and watching fireworks from four different locations, the best by far being those at the Air Force Academy.
On Day 6, our last day in Colorado, we said our goodbyes and headed off to one last attraction -- the Manitou Cliff Dwellings. This was my second favorite part of the trip, topped only by the Royal Gorge. And fortunately, I got some of my best pics of the trip here.
And, of course, we ate one more time before heading back toward Kansas. We tried this place, called Manitou Pancake and Steak House. Again, it was one of those restaurants that's not much to look at, but appeared to be busy with both tourists and locals.
|Shane's "Incline" Skillet (chunky potatoes, chicken fried steak, sausage gravy, two eggs and cheese). He demolished it.|
|Kat's Chicken Fried Chicken with potatoes, gravy, veggies and salad. She ate all of it but the veggies. She had a huge appetite the entire trip.|
|My Pikes Peak Skillet (chunky potatoes, a patty of Angus beef, pork green chili, two eggs and cheese). This is the only meal that really got the best of me during our trip. I was only able to eat half of it.|
On full bellies and a full tank of gas, we drove about 7 hours, stopping only to get more gas and to eat dinner. Kat and Shane were both wanting fried chicken, but I didn't want KFC, so we decided on Golden Corral buffet. I didn't take pics, because it's just like all the other steak buffet places.
We stayed again in the same AmericInn Hotel in Salina that we stayed in on the way out. We considered staying somewhere else, and had even looked into a few hotel chains in both Hays and Colby, KS. Either of those places would have divided our drive a little more evenly, but I wasn't able to locate a room with two queen beds (all were either one king or two doubles...neither option worked for us). So, once we found out we'd have to stay in Salina anyway, we bit the bullet and just stayed in the same place since we still had a discount voucher.
It was a little better than last time. The hotel seemed to be just as full, but it was not nearly as noisy. The hot tub had not been fixed, but rather it had been drained and was "under repair". It served it's purpose, and it was cheap. We realize now that the hotel where Shane has been staying in Garden City is their "gem", so to speak. It's in all of their brochures, posters and on their website, and it seems that their other locations just don't live up to the one in GC.
Which brings us to today, which was Day 7 and filled with nothing but driving home. It doesn't really count, in my book. We rode for miles, we ate lunch at Subway (I was outnumbered) and I read the entire time.
It was a fun trip, and I may have one more post (a photo dump of sorts and a cost re-cap). Colorado is a nice place to visit, and I understand the appeal for some people, but I'm very glad to be back home in Missouri!