Monday, August 22, 2016

Glenwood Springs, Colorado

After leaving Golden, Co. our final destination for the day was Glenwood Springs.  After a ridiculous 18 MPH ride through the mountains we made it and it was definitely worth the trouble. Glenwood Springs was by far the best place we stopped on this wild west road trip.  There was so much to do here, where to start?
After checking in to our hotel we decided to give Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park a try. For $27 I got a round trip tram ride to the top of the mountain and a tour of two caves. I only took one cave tour though, the King's Row Cave. Everyone kept saying it was the better of the two caves. They have a third cave but it's only open on certain days for special tours. Special as in, you have to be somewhat insane to choose to do it. Squishing through crevasses that are only 18 inches wide isn't my idea of a fun time. You might as well lock me in a coffin and let me try to punch my way through. You can watch a video of people going through this tour here if you're interested.  The park had a lot to offer as far as rides, entertainment and refreshments. What it didn't advertise was the amazing views you got from the top. There's a restaurant called The Lookout Grille and the name describes it well. The seating area outside gives a view of the whole town and the mountains surrounding it. While I was up there taking photos I was plotting and scheming on coming back to this very spot to paint. Besides a fun place to go it would be the perfect place to paint.
The tram ride up and down can be purchased on its own, you don't have to purchase the cave tour.  It would be worth it for anyone just wanting to see the views from up top. The park has incredible amusement park rides and I think the tram ride could be considered one as well. It was a lot longer to get to the top than I thought. From the ground looking up it seemed like it would take just a couple of minutes but we kept going and going. The Iron Mountain tramway goes 4,300 feet, one way, so just over 3/4 of a mile up and takes about 10 minutes each way. The park is at 7100 feet above sea level. The town is listed at being 5,761 feet above sea level so we traveled up quite a ways. On the way back down we shared a tram with a nice family. There was a young boy who was telling us about Pokemon Go and we asked if he caught any at the park. He had so much fun up there he forgot to look for them so his dad let him check while in the tram. He found one so the rest of the family grabbed their phones and got to work.
We got to the adventure park too late to eat at the restaurant so we went in search of a Mexican restaurant when we got down the mountain. The cheeky woman in the Garmin gave us the wrong directions then I was a bad navigator as we ended up back on the highway headed out of town. Luckily there was a rest stop where we could turn around. Even the rest stops in Glenwood Springs are beautiful!  We got out and walked around before we turned around and headed back to town. We decided to go back towards our hotel because there were several restaurants within walking distance.
We ended up choosing Vicco's Charcoalburger where I declared I had the best cheeseburger of my life and I don't just go throwing that statement around.

If I wasn't hungry I would have taken a better picture of the burger and the fries. I was so happy to have good fries!  A while back I wrote about my hate for the fries that most restaurants are serving now. They have some sort of disgusting crunchy coating on them and they're pretty much inedible. I rarely order fries anymore but I took a chance here. They were good old fashioned crinkle cut fries and absolutely delicious. I ordered a strawberry shake as well and I was in American food heaven. It did seem to take a little while to get my food but everything was cooked fresh so it was worth it. They had good music playing and I got a kick out of a father and son duo throwing bean bags at each other instead of of playing the game, so the wait wasn't that bad. After the meal we headed back to the hotel to rest up for our second day in Glenwood Springs. Stay tuned for that post!
Travel trip #58903- GET YOUR RECEIPTS  This sounds stupid, why get a receipt, it's just a waste of paper. It might seem like a waste of paper until you need proof of purchase. It's also a good way to cross reference any charges on your credit card. Over the years some shady characters have learned new ways to scam people. For example, the tips on credit card receipts. If you leave a $3.00 tip a knavish server might add a one in front of that three giving themselves a $13 tip instead. You hate to think people would do that but they do. Another instance is at the gas station. I avoid going inside to pay at all costs so I'm well versed in the multiple button pushing at the gas pump. I always push the button for a receipt. The main reason I do this is because I know a guy who once worked at a gas station that called the cops on a guy for stealing gas. The police caught up with the man and pulled him over and had him go back to the gas station. Turns out the guy paid at the pump but the guy at the station somehow forgot that part. He just remembered seeing the guy get gas and drive away without going inside. It was an honest mistake and nobody was harmed in the situation, but it's why I always get a receipt.  Just recently my cousin took a road trip and he got gas in BFE, paid at the pump, didn't get a receipt and went inside to buy something to drink. While inside the clerk tried to tell him that he owed him for gas. My cousin explained to him that he already paid at the pump and the conversation went on and on until my cousin put down the snacks and high tailed it out of there. If he had gotten a receipt he would have had proof in hand that he already paid. Getting a receipt never hurts and you can recycle them once your trip is over and you checked any questionable charges.

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