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!”
(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…
We stopped for a few breathers…
And when you have two shutterbugs on a hike, there were many stops to take photos.
Our hunt for good pics pushed out onto the edge… of almost every cliff.
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!
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.
Small gardens grew outside and teased the fresh goods you find inside.
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.
We opted to share a giant green juice.
And when you order a salad at The Corner Beet, you get one heck of a 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?
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