After four days on the road from our home in Virginia, "Runtrails
and Company" has arrived in Colorado. It's wonderful to be back!
Every time we drive westward into Colorado or Wyoming, we search
the distant horizon for our first hazy glimpse of snow-covered
peaks near Denver or Sheridan. Is that a cloud or a mountain?
Hmm. It doesn't seem to be moving like these other clouds.
We finally get close enough to confirm that yes, indeed, it is
the Front Range or the Bighorns rising majestically above the
Plain. What excitement!
I took this photo of snow-capped mountains through the
windshield today as we headed west of Denver on Rt. 285 toward
We're looking forward to another great summer in the
mountains. It's time to RELAX.
RETIREMENT IS NEVER BORING
Life can be intense when we're home, especially as the time
nears to go on an extended trip like this. Nothing
bad has happened to us since I ended the 2006 journal last
fall. We've just been very busy keeping up with our home and
yard, family, volunteer work, running, and other interests. We
continue to plan more than we can do, and our ability to
accomplish all the things we want to do diminishes as we get
So much for my goal of becoming more of a "Type B" kind of
It was tough to leave Colorado last August because we had such a
great summer. We adjusted to our routines back at home fairly
quickly but procrastinated doing some things we should have done
to facilitate leaving again this summer, like cutting enough
firewood for next winter and starting the 2007 journal.
Tater checks out the woodpile in early May
Those jobs became somewhat frenzied during May. And there are
some things we just can't do until closer to the time we leave,
such as weeding the flower beds one last time and packing the
camper -- more labor-intensive jobs.
Weeds don't take vacations!
I regret not starting the 2007 web journal at the beginning of
the year. Several
web-related projects took much longer than I expected,
such as organizing several years of digital photos, changing
several links on 400+ pages of the 2005 and 2006 journals before our
friend Eric suggested using a "frame" on the left side
(no time yet to change it on those two journals), and making
other visible and invisible changes to the web site.
I also lost a couple months of photos in early 2007 (long story)
that I had hoped to include in the journal. That was a hard
lesson to learn. You just cannot back up digital photos in too
many places! We had some interesting training runs and races
that I hope to add later to the journal when I get around to
discussing our training for this summer's races, but there are
no photos of some of them.
If you've ever left your home for three months, you already know how many things there are to do before you leave.
Even though we're fairly well-organized people, we still got pretty stressed
out the last few days at home. Driving hundreds of miles each
day with a camper in tow was also nerve-wracking. (Most folks in
little cars have no clue how long it takes us to slow down or stop.) But each day we got farther away from home,
the more relaxed I
got. The mountains beckon!
Fortunately, our trip west was pretty uneventful -- no blown
camper tires or major mechanical problems like last year, no bad traffic
tie-ups, and only a few construction sites to slow us down on I-64
and I-70 between Virginia and Colorado. We narrowly dodged a
nasty storm in Kansas and Missouri with 70 MPH winds and
flooding. I took this photo of the arch in St. Louis during a
rainstorm we hit in that city on Thursday:
Our only problems so far have been
occasional slow lines for diesel pumps, a
broken hinge on a kitchen counter extension (Jim will replace it
lighter weight piece of wood), and a minor glitch with the black water dump valve
that he jury-rigged until he can find a replacement part.
So far we haven't had to pay for overnight camping anywhere. We
found good spots at Wal-Mart stores the first three nights (with
permission from the managers) and now we're hunkered down on
vacant land next to the fire department in a small town west of
Denver. It is reasonably close to the two trail heads we'll use
on the Colorado Trail tomorrow.
After that run, we'll move to
the inexpensive ($11/day) National Forest Service campground at
Kenosha Pass for one or two nights. We enjoyed staying there
last year and it's convenient to the
second CT segment I'll run on Monday. It is probably full this
weekend, so for tonight we'll guard the fire house! (Jim, a
volunteer fireman, feels right at home.)
Internet connections with our cell phones will be sporadic in this area and after we
get to Dayton, Wyoming on Tuesday or Wednesday. We'll post
entries and respond to e-mail as often as we can.
Now off to bed with dreams of running Segment 3 of the Colorado
Trail tomorrow -- I'm psyched!!
"Runtrails & Company" - Sue Norwood, Jim O'Neil, Cody, and
© 2007 Sue Norwood and Jim O'Neil