Monday, February 20, 2017

Estes Park YMCA

We drove up for the weekend to Estes Park to stay at the YMCA on Friday. We originally had planned to do Mardi Gras this weekend, but Davis had a science fair and so we cancelled. Then his project had some issues and he changed his mind so we were left with a free weekend. I looked around locally, but most things were booked. I have wanted to visit the YMCA at Rocky Mountain National Park and I have really wanted to try snowshoe hiking so I checked and they had a cabin available! I booked and we made a plan.

We drove up Friday morning listening to a new audiobook "Egg and Spoon". The weather was lovely and the drive was very pretty. WE got to the YMCA around 1pm and we checked in and quickly hit the cafeteria for lunch. After lunch we unpacked in the cabin and I took some pictures and we got Holly settled in and then we went to explore. The kids played gaga ball and then we shopped in the general store. We wandered over to the skating rink to check it out and we had it to ourselves! We all strapped on some skates and did a few rounds on the rink to some terribly cheesy music before crowds began to descend upon us. Apparently the arch diocese of Denver was attending that weekend along with 1500 catholic children. We headed into Estes Park for dinner rather than face the cafeteria crowds.

Estes Park is a cute little town where we had visited last September for the Scottish Festival. We went into the bookstore and the record store and bought some saltwater taffy. We ended up at Nepal's for dinner, where we played heads up and tried some new foods. We came back to our cabin that evening and built a fire and Davis and I read in the living room while Sam drew and Michael got some work done.
Saturday morning we woke up early and went on a five mile hike in the Rocky Mountain National Park to Mill's Lake. I'll make a separate post with those photos, but I will tell you that it was absolutely amazing.

We got back around 1 and got lunch in the cafeteria. Then we went to Sweet Memorial and checked out a puzzle and a game. We walked over to the pool, but it was very crowded so we made our way over to the craft center. We each picked out a tie dye garment and a pattern and colors and got to tie dye our own item. It was so fun! We spent some time at the play ground and then went back up to our cabin to rest and relax. After a while we drove back into town to visit the Stanley Hotel and pick up some thai food for dinner as we couldn't face the crowded cafeteria again.

We spent the evening playing Rummikub, building a puzzle and reading by the fire. It was wonderful.

The next morning, the kids went to do archery and I wandered around the YMCA. After archery, we checked out tennis rackets and balls and went to spend an hour on the courts. We had a grand time and the views were unbeatable. The weather remained sunny and warm for the mountains and we soaked it up. We had an early lunch in the cafeteria and beat the church crowd and then packed up to drive home. We had an amazing weekend and really enjoyed exploring the mountains near our home. It was good to get out and about and see new things.

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