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Colorado Day 2 : The Flatirons

May 5th, 2018

Buckle up because this was a long day.

Sometimes plans just come together. When they do it’s a great feeling. Unfortunately, the start of our trip was less of that, and more pure chaos and panic.

We woke up well before sunrise to get to the Flatirons, which were only about 8 minutes away. The plan was to get a shot of the red morning sunlight reflecting off the big rock faces, and some other shots along the hike. Our GPS had entirely different plans though. It managed to take us about half a mile down the road from the entrance to where I wanted to be shooting, and we weren’t super familiar with the area. We ended up walking up through a neighborhood and found a trail, which for some reason we figured was the right way. After hiking about a mile and a half up towards to Flatirons themselves, we realized we had made a mistake. By this time, the sun was already up and the light was looking good. We rushed back down to the car and found the correct spot, but the light was already mostly gone. Even though I didn’t capture the shot I wanted, I did manage to get a decent shot of the Flatirons with the moon looming overhead.

The moon really made this image for me. If it wasn't there, I would have been pretty disappointed that we missed the red light.

After an up and down morning, we decided it was time to go to breakfast. A friend of mine recommended we go to The Buff Restaurant and we decided to listen to her. I don't regret that decision at all. I had the B L T T which is basically just a BLT with turkey. I also got their tomato bisque soup with it and it was amazing. If you're ever in Boulder, you have to go there (I know I keep saying that, but you gotta trust me on this one). One of the first things I noticed as well is how friendly everyone was. I talked to a waiter (who wasn't even waiting our table) about Penguins hockey for a good 10 minutes after he had noticed my Pens hat.

It was hard to take this picture and not just immediately eat it like I did the other night at Taco Junky

After we ate, we headed to Celestial Tea. Lauren wanted to go, and it seemed like a fun idea. It ended up being a great time. We got a bunch of free tea samples and did a tour of their factory. It was really cool to see the process of how tea is made and packed. Also, Celestial Tea ships all their tea worldwide from this single factory, so that's pretty cool. If you're planning on going and want to know how much it costs, you're in luck because it's free. The catch is the tour ends in the gift shop, and after smelling all that tea and seeing how it's made, you're probably going to want to buy some for yourself. We got a box of the "Bengal Spice" which is amazing. It's a cinnamon ginger tea and I think it's my new favorite.

At this point, I'd like to mention I was so exhausted that I fell asleep at a table waiting for the tour. So you would think this was the end of our day but we weren't even close to done.

Since it was Cinco De Mayo, we had to get margaritas.

Pearl Street was bumping and seemed like the place to go for them. We ended up walking around a good bit before getting margaritas and saw some crazy street performances. Two of them really stood out to me. One was a funny clown who almost gave Lauren a heart attack by juggling flaming sticks and riding a 12 foot tall unicycle. The other was one of the strangest, most creative things I've seen in a while. A man playing piano and singing. Upside down. He had strung himself up right above his piano and was jamming out. We watched him for a good bit and could see his ankles turning blue.

Once we had walked around a bit, we went to the first place we saw that offered margaritas and looked like they'd have good Mexican food. Luckily for us, that ended up being the Tahoma Tequila Bistro. We had some awesome chicken quesadillas and margaritas. I got drunk off of a single margarita like a lightweight (I don't drink at all anymore) and felt like Cinco De Mayo was running through my veins.

After a while, we decided to head back to the car to make our trip to our next location for the next couple days, Estes Park. The drive from Boulder to the Estes is BEAUTIFUL. This was my first time actually seeing mountains in real life. I was in awe to say the least.

My first real view of the mountains we'd get to explore the next few days. Thanks to Lauren for the pic while I was driving!

The last thing we did was check into our hotel, the Alpine Trail Ridge Inn. The best part about this motel is that it's less than 5 minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park. It's slightly small, but much like the Foot of the Mountain Motel, it's super cozy. The size doesn't really matter to us since we won't be spending much time hanging out there (except to watch Penguins games). Also, it's super cheap. So that's a big plus.

Tomorrow we'll be heading into the park to check out some of the scenery and hopefully to shoot some cool pictures, so stay tuned. Hopefully I'll have another blog up tomorrow.

Also be on the lookout for a review of my Wandrd Prvrke 31 camera bag. I feel like after going through the airport with this bag, I can sufficiently review it.


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