Mountains, Fields & Thunderstorms – Oh My! 

Photo album –  Colorado / Photo album – Kansas & Oklahoma

Yes, that is Pike’s Peak in the background.  The nice thing about offering to take photos for other people is they will also take one of you. 😊

Yesterday, before I headed out of Colorado Springs, I spent a few hours exploring the Manitou Cliff Dwellings and the Garden of the Gods. 

The cliff dwellings are very well preserved and an interesting look at the homes of the Anasazi and Pueblo Indians. One tidbit I learned is that the dwellings are not in their original location. They were originally located in the Four Corners (where Nevada, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico meet) and were moved to this spot in Colorado. Despite the small lack of authenticity, they were still interesting to see and to photograph.  (again, I have a ton – I think I have taken 800+ so far – photographs that will be uploaded and links added to these posts)

My next stop was the Garden of the Gods Park. I was fascinated to learn that this is a city park, not a national or state park. There is no charge to enter the park and it has a driving route with lots of scenic pull-offs, as well as several hiking trails.  I spent some time on both. The rock formations, most of which have names, were massive, intimidating and exhilarating.  Along the way I chatted with other photographers (including 1 who was doing a lingerie photo shoot amongst all the tourists!), hikers, tourists, scout groups and even a real rock climber. I didn’t realize until she had walked off that I didn’t get a photo. I should have, her climbing gear was impressive!

The photo at the top of this post was taken at the Siamese Twins formation. The hole in the center has a perfect view of Pike’s Peak.  It was amazing to see the snow still on the top of the mountain! I wanted to take the cog railway to the top, but it is a minimum 3 hour trip and I needed to get on the road.

Colorado, you are beautiful! From your majestic mountains to the plains in the eastern part of the state.  The cloud formations over the fields were massive and looked so fluffy.  I knew that clouds like that had to be leading to something weather-wise.

Once I crossed over into Kansas, I found out!

Thunderstorms, strong winds and golf ball sized hail finally encouraged me to pull over in the first parking lot I came to. Fortunately, that lot was right next to a hotel. I had planned on car camping last night, but didn’t think it was wise in that weather, so I hopped online ( – I love you!) and made a quick reservation.

A few hours of work, some time snuggled in bed with a book and a good night’s sleep has me raring and ready for today.

1st stop – Dodge City, KS for some siteseeing and then on to Oklahoma City to see my cousin.

Happy Trails all! I hope you are all planning your adventure.

Pro tip – get off the main highways. Take the smaller roads, drive through some small towns, stop at local restaurants and turn off the podcasts and videos and listen to the local radio stations and sing along. It will be good for your mind and your soul. Both will expand exponentially  with each mile that passes

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