August 22, 2008
We make at least one annual visit to the wonderful state of Colorado. For the past four years we have attended the wonderful Rocky Mountain Folks Fest in Lyons. In addition, we own a rental property in Colorado Springs and have family in Manitou Springs so we always try to slip in a visit to that area as well.
This year, we flew into Denver and rented a Jeep Cherokee which we drove south to Manitou to see Kathy’s brother Chris, his wife Kari & their kids Sophie & James. We love Manitou, with its funky vibe- it feels like a mountain cousin of Key West. We only were there for a limited time this visit, long enough to take in the weekly summer farmer’s market and to go out to eat at the Loop restaurant. We were hopefully that the Kilroy clan would be able to join us for a day at the Folks Fest, but the start of school and Chris’s annual participation in the Pikes Peak run prevented them from driving up. Chris did manage to once again run the Pikes Peak Ascent, a 13.32 mile, 7,815 ft. ascent up the side of the mountain, this year in pretty hideous conditions. Congrats are in order, though perhaps this really will be his final time and they can head up for the festival next year.
After a far too short visit, we headed for Lyons, stopping for the night in Boulder. We stocked up on camping gear and warm supplies as the forecast called for a wet and cold weekend; then headed on up to get in line at Planet Bluegrass for the camping site lottery. It was our first time camping on-site, but thankfully our friends Bruce & Kerry Darby are veterans of the process and they were able to secure a good spot in line. They let us head into the property promptly at 6 PM and the dash for campsites was on. Thanks to Bruce, we were able to snag a highly desirable corner location, right along the beautiful St. Vrain River. In a campsite known for its cramped conditions, we were able to spread out and set up an awesome base camp for our group.
Kerry in Line
Kathy, Katherine & Jill
The rain started that night, but Kathy’s excellent tarping skills kept our site dry and warm, despite the deluge. Our first night in camp was great as we were entertained by the wonderful singing of Kerry & Bruce’s friend Jill, who plays with the house band at their restaurant, The Rock Inn Mountain Tavern in Estes Park.
The St. Vrain River
By the start of the festival, Friday morning, we had secured a front row spot for our pop-up and Kathy had gone to retrieve her friend Kate & her partner Sarah who had flown in from Santa Cruz for the Festival and the rain and cold continued. In fact, the entire day on Friday was light rain, followed by heavy rain, then wind, then more rain. Our group was troopers and we were mostly warm and dry under our handy pop-up and the show went on as planned.
Pikes Peak Ascent