Tuesday, April 25, 2017: Good morning, Denver!
The views around Denver provide a stark contrast to New York City. I love the New York skyline and the walkability of the city, but I also love our drives around Denver as it sits at the bottom of the Rockies with snow-capped mountains in the distance and its proximity to nature.
I woke up early on Tuesday to write down what I could remember from our journey on Monday, and as soon as I had my thoughts together, we took off to find coffee. We love local brews, both of the coffee and beer variety. So we looked up local coffee options, and our first Denver non-Starbucks coffee stop was at Lost Coffee in Castle Rock. Between my small hot coffee and Nathan’s large iced coffee, I’d say we picked well.
After coffee, we drove into Denver to grab lunch with my friend Kara at Sam’s Number 3 on 16th Street. Nathan and I have considered looking up Diners, Drive-ins, and Dive stops, particularly along the road, and sure enough, this placed was a Triple D stop.
After some BLTs, burgers and some much-needed catching up, Nathan and I decided to venture to Boulder. A major weather hub and home to the University of Colorado made Boulder a necessary stop on our drive. After circling around the UC campus [Five out of ten on the campus beauty scale. Props for the campus architecture’s uniformity, I guess, but most of my points are dedicated to the gorgeous mountain views.] We also drove up to the NCAR (National Center for Atmospheric Research) campus, which overlooks Colorado. It’s possible we were even seeing Denver in the distance.
While we were driving up hills, Nathan drove us up the windy, Flagstaff mountain road. I’ll be honest, I would have to get used to mountain roads. As someone who only learned in her adulthood to stop crying during airplane takeoffs [I’ve had this down for a few years, okay!], roads with drop-offs made me anxious and dizzy. With some practice, I think I could overcome that, too. Once we were able to stop and take in the sights, I was able to enjoy the views.
Before leaving Boulder, we wanted to take on one of Kara’s craft brew recommendations, and stopped by the Avery Brewing Company. We tried a few 4oz beers from their lengthy menu, and I think my favorite may have been the Coconut Porter. Nathan tried the Whole-Hopped IPA, another winner in our book. I’m not even a fan of IPAs, but I enjoyed this one.
After taking a self-guided tour of the brewery, we headed back to Denver for dinner. We found a place called Illegal Petes on 16th Street where I indulged in a burrito bowl sopping with queso and Nathan enjoyed steak nachos. After dinner, we drove around Downtown Denver to get a better look at the city.
Takeaways from higher altitudes:
- The air is quite dry
- There’s not enough water in the world
- One beer feels like three
- How long does it take to adjust to high altitudes?
- It’s absolutely beautiful here and I can’t get enough
- The photos from my iPhone have been disappointing. Better trip photos to come!