Spring Break in Colorado: High Altitude Hikes, Warm Cookies and Chinese Chess, and Snowboarding in the Rockies

This past weekend I flew by myself for the first time to visit my cousin Christa and her husband Tim in Denver, Colorado. I had a super fun time traveling alone for the first time and had the best time ever exploring Colorado with my cousin and her husband. For the sake the longevity of this post, it will be split up into 6 sections recording the 6 days I was there to keep it as simple as possible.

Day 1

It was the thursday before spring break and I still had to go to school. I woke up and went to school but got out early at 12:45. At 12:45 my mom picked me up, we drove home to get my already packed bag, and then left for L.A at 1:30. We got to L.A.X around 3:30 where I checked in at the gate, checked my bag, and went through security.  Since i’m under 18 my mom got a free guest pass that allowed her to walk me to my gate. After going through security my mom and I got some food and then we parted ways once I boarded. I walked to my window seat in the second row and shortly after the plane took off at 5:45 . It was a super pretty flight as we flew over California, Nevada, Utah, and finally landed in Colorado at around 9:00 after watching a pretty sunset from the airplane window.

After I had gotten off I followed these 2 guys I made friends with on the plane to baggage claim in the Denver airport. After getting my luggage I waited outside and my cousin Christa picked me up. I put my bag in the trunk and we drove to her house in Denver. When we got there I put my luggage in the spare room where I was going to sleep and went to bed shortly after.

Day 2

The next morning I slept in till 10 a.m , got out of bed, and enjoyed the morning with Christa who had the day off of work. We made homemade belgian waffles (which are amazing in high altitude) and enjoyed a late breakfast. Afterwards we got ready and I packed my backpack for the day. We decided to drive 30 minutes to Boulder and go on a hike on the Flatirons trail. After we drove there and parked we started our hike. The trail was super pretty and on our way up we saw a deer on the side of the trail and stopped to watch it. Since Colorado is roughly 5,600 feet above sea level and Santa Barbara is 0 I found myself out of breath and had to adjust to the high altitude. After getting to the top we could see the snow covered rockies and decided to climb the rocks and explore a little bit. Afterwards we decided to make our way down. On our way down we saw a wild red fox that was friendly enough to come up to us and I walked up to it and took a few pictures before it ran off into the bushes.We walked down the rest of the trail, got in the car, and drove to downtown Bolder. We stopped by Starbucks and got some chai tea lattes but wanted a nice pastry. We found this place called Boulder Baked and decided to go after reading their Yelp description confidently stating “We sell comfort food”. We got there and saw that their menu mostly consisted of ordered to make cookies and decided to get a batch of 4 freshly baked cookies, chocolate mint chip, hawaiian, ginger-doodle, and red velvet. While we waited we played connect 4 and eventually a game of intense Chinese checkers for 30 minutes. While we were playing we got our delicious warm cookies and devoured them, they were delicious :). Afterwards, we left, got in the car, and drove back to Denver. After getting back from Boulder we had dinner and then packed up the car with our snow gear. Once their friend Ali from Pakistan who they invited to come with us arrived we all got in the car and drove an hour and a half to Silverthorne where Christa’s husband, Tim’s, family owns a cabin. When we got there there was a ton of snow and we put all of our stuff in the cabin. Everyone was super tired and eventually we went to bed. Before I went to bed I went outside and took some star pictures because it was a super clear night.

Day 3

The next morning we woke up at 7:30, got our snow gear on, had breakfast, and left for Copper Mountain Ski Resort. Once getting there we took a shuttle to center village. Christa and I strapped in on our snowboards and got on a lift while Tim stayed behind to teach Ali how to snowboard on the bunny hills. We had a ton of fun but the conditions that morning were pretty icy. Eventually we met up with Christa’s friend, Hannah, and snowboarded with the rest of the day with her , her sister and friend who were all on ski’s. After a while the snow began to soften and it became a lot more fun. After snowboarding the backside of the mountain and coming back up we decided to ride back to center village to meet up with Tim and Ali for lunch along with Hannah’s parents.After lunch, Ali wanted to be done for the day so Tim joined us and we started up the mountain. We went on some really fun tree runs and It was really fun carving through the trees and soft snow even though I ripped my snow pants tearing them on a tree branch. It was super fun snowboarding together, throwing snowballs at each other, and spending the day together. At about 3:30 we made our way down the mountain, took the shuttle back to the car, and drove back to the cabin. My calves were super sore from carving toe-side on my snowboard and I couldn’t feel them. When we got back to the cabin we relaxed for the rest of the day. I put on my on onesie,we watched the movie Edge of Tomorrow, had pizza for dinner, and then went to bed.

Day 4

The next day I woke up, dawdled out of bed in my onesie, looked outside, and saw it was snowing. After packing all of my stuff up, cleaning my room, and eating breakfast I went outside and took some pictures in the fresh snow. Afterwards we got in the snow covered car and drove back to Denver. The drive back was super pretty and everything was white with snow. After getting back to Denver we stopped by Christa and Tim’s house, said bye to Ali, and then went to Church. After Church we went to Christa and Tim’s friend’s Dan and Jenny’s house demolition party. The couple bought their new house from an asian lady that had totally covered it top to bottom in felt, dragon wallpaper, and thick red carpeting. I got to work tearing down the wallpaper and after an hour and a half we left. Afterwards we went to a hostel for mentally disabled people who can leave and go as they want and are given housing and benefits called the Lennox House.We made them dinner and got to talk and socialize with a lot of them and find out what their stories were. Afterwards we went back to Christa and Tim’s house and their friend John came over. We watched Monty Python and the Holy Grail, had desert, then went to bed.

Day 5

The next morning I woke up at 10 a.m and had a relaxing morning with the house to myself because Christa and Tim were both at work. After I got up I warmed up some delicious leftover belgian pancakes from the first day and had an awesome breakfast. Afterwards I put on some music, did the dishes, edited some pictures, and relaxed until Christa picked me up at 1:00. We went out to this place called Avanti in downtown Denver which has 5 different food truck places to choose from under the same roof. We decided to get some Arepas, a kind of south american sandwich filled with beef and plantains. They were so good. After eating we headed down to the church where Christa works. I relaxed, ate snacks, and edited pictures while she worked and had a meeting. At around 5 we headed back and met up wit Tim We made the best homemade burgers (which may have been undercooked the first time) with bacon and barbecue sauce. After eating dinner we played a board game called Ticket to Ride and after losing terribly, helping settle an argument between the two of them regarding the board game, and throwing all of my clothes in my suitcase, We all went to bed.

Day 6 

The next morning I was up at 5:20 a.m. After I showered and got ready Christa was up and I grabbed my luggage, put it in her car and we left for the Denver airport. I noticed my eye was pretty irritated and I had a sore throat but I thought nothing of it. We got there around 6:30 a.m. I grabbed my bag, said bye to Christa, and went to the check-in line. After checking my bag, going through security, eating breakfast, and going to my gate I boarded my plane. We took off at around 8:05 a.m. The plane ride was super pretty as we flew over the Rocky Mountains and back to California. To pass the time I took out my computer and  watched the movie The Secret Life of Walter Mitty before my computer died (the battery sucks). After landing in Los Angeles, I went to baggage claim, got my luggage, and waited outside where my mom eventually picked me up. After she picked me up we had lunch with my brother, Alex, who lives in L.A and then we drove back to Santa Barbara. After getting home I realized my sore throat and irritated eye had gotten worse and I rested for the rest of the day trying to feel better. The adventure was finally over.


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