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    Goodbye Mountains

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009

    We said goodbye to Colorado's Rocky Mountains on Monday by spending the day in Fort Collins and driving up Poudre Canyon. Before a busy work schedule caused us to cancel, Mike was planning to run the Fort Collins Marathon back in May, which runs down the canyon and we wanted to check out what he had missed. Early on into the drive we both realized that he NEEDS to do this race someday. It is gorgeous. No, gorgeous is not the right word. See for yourself:

    Since Fort Collins was unusually busy with a festival all weekend, we didn't feel like we fully experienced the town, so we went back Monday afternoon. We strolled around the shops, stopped for drinks at a really cute outdoor patio and even did a bit of a treasure hunt. A lady at the visitor's center gave us a list of murals throughout the downtown area done by local artists. Benjamin had been studying the list since she gave it to us and was very excited to locate some of the paintings. His favorite was an adorable depiction of sheep on a utility box:

    Benjamin finding his favorite "mural" on the art walk in Fort Collins

    Sadly, on Tuesday morning we bid farewell to Colorado and began the long stretch of driving through Nebraska. The drive was uneventful - for obvious reasons - we were in Nebraska. We did, kind of, stop off at the Great Platte River Road Archway. Have you seen the movie About Schmidt? Jack Nicholson rides up the escalator during his character's roadtrip. Seemed appropriate that we stop, but when we saw the admission prices ($10 per adult) and because we were not sure exactly what was beyond that escalator, we decided to skip it. Benjamin thought that what he saw for free was great, so we got off pretty easily.

    We arrived at our hotel in Council Bluffs, IA (just over the river from Omaha) at about 8:30pm. 587 miles total for the day, we were zonked. Grabbed a quick bite at Applebee's and were in bed by 10. We left the hotel at about 9am in the morning, drove through torrential rains, but were home in Rochester at about 4pm. Benjamin is in bed and Mike and I are enjoying our ability to watch tv at a normal volume with all of the lights on. The trip was WONDERFUL, but we are happy to be off the road.