Two Einstein’s bagels and a change of clothes later, we headed out to see what Boulder was all about. We had limited time here, as we were going to Denver and wanted to get there before the sun went down. We started at Pearl Street Mall, which is a big outdoor shopping area with tons of street performers. We walked up and down to get a feel for the place and count how many contortionists were out. Only one. But where they lacked in gross “body art” they made up for in free Haagen-Dazs samples.
Next we ventured up Broadway, where we captured a fleeting glance of University of Colorado Boulder. Apparently, from what I read on Wikipedia (so it’s true), every year on 4/20 students gather somewhere on campus to smoke pot. Apparently the year before there were upwards of 15,000 people there and only 11 tickets given out. And approximately 36,000 “Number 2’s” sold at the local McDonald’s.
As we made our way up the hill, we stopped at Albums on the Hill, which is apparently pretty famous. There were more albums in this store than I’d seen anywhere else. The big, vinyl, vintage kind that hipsters and grandparents love. I wanted to buy a specific Bloc Party album to take with me. They told me they didn’t have it but it was available in-store on a cassette. Which is great because a cassette is slightly less useful than an album.
Following my disappointment we headed back down the hill to the car, but only after running into Colorado’s homeless, which we decided aren’t actually homeless but just high all the time and choosing to live outside. Which makes sense since Colorado is so warm all year round.
Off to Denver we went. It was only about a 30 minute drive, but we unfortunately had missed the last Coors Brewery tour of the day. However, Justin and I (although way more so Justin) are huge fans of Chipotle. And any true Chipotle fan knows that the very first store opened in Denver. So naturally we made a stop for dinner:
HOW GOOD DOES IT LOOK?! Inside was so strange – there wasn’t a counter like at the Chipotle’s we know where you go down the line and tell them what you want. You order it all at once – standing still – and they make it. I asked the woman at the register if this was the first Chipotle ever (solely to amuse myself and Justin) and her response was “I guess there are others?” ARE YOU KIDDING HOW DO YOU NOT KNOW THIS.
The burrito was excellent, as always, so we inhaled them. As we left we grabbed some napkins and water and punched the stupid woman behind the counter.
We stopped at State Capitol Builidng and got a picture at exactly one mile above sea level (queue douchey picture in 3, 2…)
To finish off the night, we headed to LoDo just north of Downtown. Apparently it used to be an area full of warehouses and buildings similar in nature, but has recently been renovated into a going out area with restaurants and bars. We stopped at Wynkoop Brewing Company, dubbed “Denver’s Oldest Brew Pub”, and had a beer before heading off to the campsite.
As we got in the car to head 30 minutes west of the city to our site, we assumed the day’s exploration was winding down. Little did we know there was one thing left.
The trip to the site. We were staying at a state park that was deeper in the Rockies than expected. To get there we drove up a road that had more curves than the past three Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Editions combined. Unlike SI Swimsuit Edition, though, it nearly made me puke. After what seemed like hours of driving up and up, round and round, we made it to the campsite in the depths of the Rockies.
It was a long day, and we had an early morning ahead of us.