Oh Mountain Hike! Denver, CO

Denver Hike

As I’m originally from New England, a love of mountains runs deep in my veins. I sometimes find myself eyeing the peak-less Florida skyline with a pang of longing.

It should be no surprise then that when the friendly car rental representative asked us what we would be doing while in town, I quickly responded, “We’re going hiking!”

Denver_Hiking_Feet(Rocking my Fabletics lava pants)

The car rep looked up from his handheld check-in device, mid checklist, and whipped out his phone, flashing us a series of photos from his own recent hike in Boulder. He rattled off a list of great hiking spots within a day-trip from Denver and insisted we try one.

Not wanting to refuse the advice of our new friend, we ran through the names of various mountain names we were given in Google Maps and picked Lair o the Bear, for it’s ferocious name and proximity to the one mountain I already knew, Red Rocks.

Driving up the winding roads through the mountains was somewhat like being on a roller coaster ride, but with much better scenery.

Though we lost cell phone reception, we did find our first destination…

Denver_Hiking_3It’s name was far worse than its bite, however. After just a few minutes of meandering down a quiet pathway, we realized that Lair o the Bear was a pretty tame little fluffball.

Denver_Hiking_1

Denver_Hiking_2So we rolled back along the winding roads and hopped to the next set of mountains.

Denver_Hiking_4It started with a quiet mountain stream…

Denver_Hiking_5But after choosing our hiking path, we realized that this hike was more our speed.

Denver_Hiking_PathStartIt wound up and down, over and around, taking us past beautiful views and along aromatic mountain laurel that lined long sections of the rust colored dirt path.

Denver_Pathway

We stopped for a few breathers…

Denver_Climbing

And when you have two shutterbugs on a hike, there were many stops to take photos.

Denver_Photographing

Our hunt for good pics pushed out onto the edge… of almost every cliff.

Denver_His_Rock

Denver_Her_Rock_1

Denver_Her_Rock_2

Our efforts paid off as the beautiful Red Rocks came into view. After almost two years since seeing it last, it was definitely worth the hike!

Denver_Red_Rocks

Making our way down the mountain was a relative breeze, but we certainly worked up an appetite that no amount of trail mix could curb.

Something about being outdoors seems to make me crave fresh foods and green juice. Hitting the ol’ Yelp search we found a promising little cafe in downtown Denver a short drive from where we were staying.

The Corner Beet was probably every cliche you’d expect to find when walking into a vegetarian juice shop.

Denver_Cafe

Small gardens grew outside and teased the fresh goods you find inside.

Denver_Cafe_Drinking_Alone

The inside is a combination of reclaimed and rustic decor. Wheat grass grows behind the front counter and a giant chalkboard touts what’s fresh on the menu for the day.

Denver_Cafe_Counter

We opted to share a giant green juice.

Denver_Cafe_Juice

And when you order a salad at The Corner Beet, you get one heck of a salad.

Denver_Cafe_Salad

The open faced hummus sandwich wasn’t a disappointment either. I may have taken some of Nick’s portion, but after that hike, who can blame me?

Denver_Cafe_DiggingIn

I don’t get to hike very often, so jumping right in and tackling a mountain on our first day was the best possible start to the trip

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