Our visit to the Grandparents' house in Colorado coincided with the annual Long's Peak Scottish/Irish Highland Festival in Estes Park, which is kicked off by a parade on Saturday morning at 9:30am. Granpda talked about it enough on Friday night when we arrived and again on Saturday morning that we figured we'd better go check out the parade to see what all the fuss was about. Given his recommendation, we kind of assumed that Grandpa would go.
"Have you ever seen the parade?" I asked grandpa.
"Oh, about once in the last 20 years."
"Do you want to come with?"
"Oh no! I don't want to see all that!"
The Scottish/Irish parade actually turned out to be a pretty big deal here in Estes, complete with bagpipers from Scotland and loads of Scottish Terriers and Wolfhounds. Tourists and residents crowded the parade route with collapsible chairs, which made viewing easy for us as we waited behind them. Our view was only blocked occasionally as everyone in attendance insisted on standing up every time an American flag came by.
After the parade, we headed over to the Post Office so that I could mail home my house keys before going to Safeway to get some stuff for next week and a short trip to Radio Shack to pick up a DC/AC car attachment that let's you plug in normal appliance (i.e. laptop).
After lunch, we headed back to Safeway with grandpa to pick up the raw materials for making home made ice cream in the evening.
I also got put in charge of making dinner, which went swimmingly until I dumped 2/3 of the pasta I was cooking into the sink as I tried to drain it. Oh well. R came to my aid and helped to finish the recipe (a good thing, too, as I'd missed a crucial instruction that involved taking a sauce off the heat before adding a bunch of ingredients).
This morning, we set out early to climb up to Sky Pond via Lock Vale and the Lake of Glass. A 4.4 mile hike in Rocky Mountain National park with a significant elevation gain that had our feet in pain within the first hour.
We ate lunch next to the Lake of Glass after climbing a massive waterfall (seen in the very back of the picture here). A storm started to roll in as we were finishing our sandwiches, so we had to give up on Sky pond and make our way quickly below tree line.
The way down seemed to take a lot longer than we'd expected, but we reached the car with only a little bit of rain and whining about our feet hurting. Then it was a 25 minute drive back to the grandparents where R made a delicious lasagna for the six of us. We also got to polish it off with the ice cream that we made last night. A caloric avalanche, but about what I'd expected from a trip to grandparents'.
Tomorrow, we leave early and drive Westward. We haven't really decided where we're going to go for sure, but know that we have to be in Vegas by Friday so that we can check in and appreciate the MGM Grand. I'd like to see the Grand Canyon for a second time along the way as the last time I saw it we were only there for half an hour. We're also planning on spending a day or two around Arches and Canyonlands and another one camping in Glen Canyon near the Utah/Arizona border. In any case, we'll try to head out around 8am tomorrow to drive up over the mountains and down to towards Moab or Mesa Verde.
All for now. More from the road!