Friday, July 31, 2015

Adventure Ridge

All the mountains have at least 1 lift running in the summer, but only Vail had adventure activities up at the ridge. There are multiple activities on top, but Alice picked the tubing and zip line. Alice gave the tubing 2 thumbs up and a 10 as her overall favorite activity. 

The zip line was bit more complex. Alice has been talking about riding a zip line for a while now, but she has never ridden a real zip line. When we went up to the top, and Alice saw the kids zip line and the bigger zip line, she announced she could do the big one. I was excited because I wanted to do the zip line, and now we could do it together.  There was a glitch in our we finished tubing, we went and signed up for a time for the zip line.  We were in the 2:00 slot, but just before our turn they shut the mountain activities down due to impending rain. We had the option of getting our new back, or waiting to see if the mountain opened back up after the clouds passed.  We decided to wait and took a few pictures and had a few coffee drinks.
The mountain finally did open back up, and we geared up and rode the people mover up to the zip line. 

Once we were hooked in and getting instructions, Alice began to question her resolve.
The only real instructions were to tilt your head back as you came in for the landing.  Alice was scared when they opened up the gates and we went flying.
Alice did not yell or scream.....I believe she was in shock as we flew down the line. I barely remember the ride because I was so concerned about Alice and helping her remember to tilt her head back. As we neared the end of the line, yelled for her to look up and back. Alice says she did, but she also wanted to look at what was coming.  Even with my superior weight, somehow Alice made it to the end before me, and as I swept in, I heard Alice crying.  The attendant couldn't get me down fast enough to get to Alice.
Alice had hit her chin on the landing and bit her lip. She was bleeding a little, but no long term damage was done. Alice took deep breaths and got her tears under control. She is a trooper and I was so proud of her.

After it was all over, we asked if she liked the zip.....we got a sideways thumb, meaning a 5. Not bad for an experience that ended in blood and crying.  Alice has decided that maybe she should wait a few more years before attempting the zip line again.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Glenwood Caverns and Adventure Park

Our family likes to visit caves, at least Larry and I do....Alice just comes along 😄
When we decided to vacation in Colorado, I wondered if there were any caves. I found Glenwood Caverns and Adventure Park. Who knew there would be a theme park with caves located on top of a mountain? But that's exactly what is it.  I highly recommend it for kids 5-10 and child like adults of any age.
You arrive in Glenwood Springs, yes they have actual springs here you can swim in, and park at the base of the mountain. You ride a gondola to the top of the mountain to the Park. I was excited about the Alpine Coaster ride, but Alice's favorite was the Canyon Flier which is a standard dual seat swing, but it slings you out over the Canyon. The experience and the views are breathtaking! There are a few other rides, such as a kids roller coaster and a roller coaster for slightly bigger kids, a zip line, of sorts, a few small kiddy rides, and the 2 caves you can tour.  I cajoled Alice into touring both, although she was ready to stop at one.

Towards the end of the day, Alice asked to have an Old Time Picture taken.  She had seen this upon entry and this was my bargaining chip to see both Caves.  Alice always enjoys dress up, so now Alice is already planning the next time she can do an Old Time Photo....but this time without her mom 😕.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Horse Riding in Vail

I had researched online for area stables for our trip. Vail stables had great reviews and several different trail rides to choose from. We actually ended up scheduling 2 rides with Vail Stables because we had such a great time on our first ride.
Our first ride ended up being a private tour for me and Alice. Our trail leader was Avery and she was great. She was good with Alice and gave lots of interesting facts about the area, trees and wildlife.
Alice rode a horse named Bandit and I rode in Smoky and the Bandit 😄

Our second ride was with a large group of 12. There were 2 trail leaders, one at the front and one in the middle to keep tabs in the group. I was glad we had prior experience since we didn't get individual attention on this ride.  For this one, we were the 'experienced' riders. Alice did a great time handling her horse on the longer ride. Alice's horse for this ride was named Clint and I rode Habinaro. Both horses were gentle and took directions well. On our last leg down the trail, it began to rain. We got wet, but not soaked.

We highly recommend Vail Stables and will go back on our next trip :-)

Summer Vacation

Instead of going to the Texas Gulf coast for our annual summer vacation, we decided to take my parent time share condo in Avon Colorado, close to Beaver Creek and Vail. This was going to be our longest road trip to date. 15 hours drive time and Alice was not looking forward to it.
We left on a Friday morning and drove 12 hours to Raton New Mexico. It was a long and exhausting day, but we all made it in good spirits. Alice mostly sang the whole way to Kids Bop and the new Taylor Swift album 1989 :-)

Saturday morning we headed out towards Colorado. We had lunch in Denver and was in Avon by 3:00 that afternoon. We did a little exploring, but mostly just rested in the condo and went swimming.

The condo we stayed at was called The Christie Lodge. It is an older lodge, but we found it quite comfy. Our room was a 1 bed / 1 bath with 1/2 kitchen (meaning no cooktop or stove). We ate out quite a lot, but did have some meals in or ate leftovers from our outings. The bedroom had a queen size bed and a little (and kinda odd) raised cot/bunk bed.  Alice immediately claimed this as hers and began to set up her space with all the toys she brought. They Lodge also has games and puzzles you can check out to play which we took advantage of when we had down time and needed an activity.

The scenery was beautiful and the weather phenomenal. Mornings were cold and chilly, afternoons were warm without ever getting too hot. We all got a slight sunburn our first day exploring the mountain. After that, we all began to wear sunblock.

I had been planning this trip for a while and had several activities lined up.  First on the list was real horseback riding....not a lead pony ride. Second was a trip to Glenwood Caverns and Adventure Park. Third was Adventure Ridge activities up on top on Vail mountain....this included tubing and zip lines. This left a few days to relax and do other stuff as we wanted and kept the trip from being too packed.
One day we went up the gondola to Beaver Creek and had lunch and took pictures. Another day we had lunch in Vail Village. 

Alice's other favorite vacation activity is watching cable TV. Since we do not have cable at home, Alice will watch hours of the Disney channel. We have all certainly gotten our fill of Jessie, Austin and Allie, Dog with a Blog and Casey Undercover to name a few.  We let the bedroom TV be Alice's domain for watching shows while we are back in the condo so mom and dad have full reign of the living room/kitchen.

We stayed a full week. Alice missed Cupcake a lot and is looking forward to her reunion with her pet. We are all looking forward to getting home and back in our comfy beds.