Saturday, August 30, 2008


Today was the trip to Aspen, Colorado. It is one of the closest resort towns to us here in Buena Vista.

However it is on the other side of the Continental Divide. This means it is up over another pass. And this is another white knuckle mountain drive.

As we went up, we got above the tree line, and the road became narrow. It was a cliff side, shelf style, straight down affair. We finally got to the top.

For the ham radio folks, there is a digipeater in the shack at the top. This repeats APRS position packets from one side of the mountain to the other. It showed up on my GeoSat GPS with the beacon, INDYPS. When we parked on top, we were 0.0 miles away from it. We were parked next to this building.

These are the tallest mountains in all of Colorado, so looking around is not as impressive since you are on top of the world. We were at 12,100 and the tallest is 14,400.

Another view from on top.

The trip down was harrowing. At least to me, I didn't like it one bit. The road was cliff side, and followed the curves of the mountain and became too narrow to even paint a center line on the road. You couldn't see the on coming cars as they were around the mountain corner from you, but the road was one lane. As you met head on, the car on the inside had to pull over as close as he could to the mountain, while the outside car squeezed by.

We finally made it down to Aspen. I drove up into the homes on the far side of the valley and took a shot back over town. The ski runs are plainly visible.

Back down in town, the height of the runs above the village is more impressive.

This place was jam packed with people. It is the beginning of Labor Day weekend, and there were absolutely no parking places anywhere. We had to drive all over town without stopping. In order to get a few pictures, I resorted to shooting out the windshield, and the side window of the truck. This is a fountain and a sidewalk cafe, but the tables and the people didn't show up well.

Again more folks sitting outside in a open air cafe and bar.

This weekend is a volley ball tournament, and everyone had on volley ball uniforms.

As we passed the main park, it was filled with nets and folks playing the tournament.

As we drove around, it was obvious that we were not going to be able to park and leave the truck. We had the dog with us and she could not be left in the truck for very long by herself, even though it was only 75 degrees outside. Parking was on side streets, blocks and blocks away, and they had free shuttles that brought you back downtown.

We gave up and returned over the pass. We stopped on the way up, in a pull out to picture why this place is called Aspen.

These are all different shots, looking in different directions.

This is looking more up at the sky where the shorter trees diminish.

Looking right straight into the woods closer to the ground. Wouldn't take too long to become lost in this forest.

On the way back up to the top of the pass, in one of the narrowest parts of the road, I met a Ford Expedition SUV that was going 35 or more. I was right next to the cliff, and there was a washout in the road. I split the difference and passed him without any clearance.

Our rear view mirrors struck each other, and it folded my mirror up against the truck. A loud whack! Didn't break the glass and with the power mirrors, I was able to put it back out and get it readjusted.

The truck doesn't have power underwear cleaners!

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