Wild Wild West- Part 5 (Rocky Mountain High)

“The Colorado Rocky Mountain high… I’ve seen it rainin’ fire in the sky… Talk to God and listen to the casual reply… Rocky Mountain High…” I blasted that song from my iPod and sang those words at the top of my lungs as Tim and I explored the little mountain towns around Denver for the first time. I did feel high in a way, from the inspiring beauty of the mountains surrounding me. I wanted to soak in every sight, every taste, every smell, every sound, on this, my last day in the Wild Wild West.

DAY 9- 9/30/12 (Golden, Central City, Idaho Springs, and Georgetown in Colorado)

This was the best day of the entire trip! We got up early and headed west from Denver to the tiny city of Golden. A giant archway from one side of the road to the other greeted us with these words: “Howdy Folks! Welcome to Golden—Where the West Lives.” Sculptures lined the main drag through town—Buffalo Bill Cody, a sleeping bear, a bison. A bridge with pedestrian walkways bore plaques that told stories of Golden’s colorful history. If you ever go, be sure to read the one entitled “Settler Farm Wife’s Initiative.” It’s hilarious and addresses the ambition of a woman and how she put her chauvinist husband in his place.

Golden, CO

We continued further west to Central City. Wow! I felt like I was on the set of an old western movie. Saloons and casinos lined both sides of the narrow main street. We ate lunch at “Millie’s” above the Easy Street Casino. As we walked back toward our car, a van full of people came flying down the hill that led into town. We watched in horror as it crashed into a rock wall without even applying the brakes. Tim ran to help and I began punching 911 on my phone. Before I could hit send a woman stepped out of the General Store behind me. “Melvin is already on his way,” she informed me. About that time I heard the siren of the only police car in town coming our way from one street over. Melvin helped Tim get six people out of the van. Alcohol was obviously involved. Miraculously the passengers only had minor injuries, but they were in big trouble with Melvin.

West 22

Our next stop was Idaho Springs, Colorado. We donned our hard hats and toured the old Phoenix Gold Mine. Tim even found some gold chips while panning in the creek next to it. Not enough to retire and travel the world, however.

West 23d (2)

Sadly, our daylight was waning, but we managed to squeeze in one more town before heading back to Denver—Georgetown. It too looked like a set from an old western movie. I’m so glad we didn’t miss it. Though most everybody had closed up shop for the evening, we found one store open—”End of the Line Ice Cream & Sodas.” That could possibly be the best hot fudge sundae I’ve ever eaten!

Georgetown 2

The entire day trip was just over one hundred miles and slightly over two hours driving time. One of most amazing days of my life! I’d love to do the exact route again someday.

DAY 10- 10/1/12 (Denver, Colorado, to Huntsville, Alabama)

Not much left to say. Goodbye, Wild Wild West! Hello, Sweet Home Alabama!

I’m glad you stuck with me from Montana to Wyoming to Utah to Colorado. Happy trails to you until we meet again!


Wild Wild West- Part 1 (Big Sky and Bison Burgers):

Wild Wild West- Part 2 (Huckleberry Ice-Cream and the Continental Divide):

Wild Wild West- Part 3 (Mangy Moose Saloon and a Bomber):

Wild Wild West- Part 4 (Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives):


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