Tuesday, July 26, 2011

We're not in Kansas anymore

However, while I was there, I had a good time.  Which is surprising for the low opinion that I have had of Kansas for years.  As I was rolling through the state, I decided to take my time and enjoy myself, eventually spending a day and a half there.  It turns out Kansas's highway rest stops are amazing.  They actually allow camping there and have designated areas away from the bathroom complete with grills and picnic tables.  Some of the bathrooms even have wireless.
Lest you be worried, Kansas has more interesting stuff than just rest stops.  I managed to stop by Abilene and see the house and presidential library of Dwight Eisenhower.  I had stopped by both Abilene and Hays City in hopes of seeing some cool historical cowboy days stuff, but couldn't really find anything.  The real treat was driving into the middle of nowhere, where there is a collection of 40 foot tall chalk towers amongst farmland.  There's a dozen or so and the one archway is the most interesting.

Eventually all good things must come to an end so I traded this view of Kansas:
For this view of Colorado:
It seems a bit of a cruel joke on the driver after travelling for so many hours through Kansas, for there to be 150 miles more of the same terrain upon entering Colorado.  Such is life.  I stuck it out though and found my way to Boulder where I met up with my friend Michael Fitzgerald.  Being well into the afternoon and possible thunderstorms threatening, Mike and I decided it would be best to go hiking.  We hiked up to the top of the First and Second Flatirons which gave us a pretty good view of the Third Flatiron.
After that, we met up with another State College friend, Justin Penfield, and crashed at his friend, Ben's, place.  The next day, Justin, Ben and I headed up into Boulder Canyon to do some climbing.  I soon realized that while it's only a ten minute drive into the canyon from town, the approaches may not be so easy.  One area you balance your way along a giant leaky waterpipe for a few hundred yards to access different climbs.
Another crag required us to do a Tyrolean traverse across the creek, which was rather high.
The Canyon was a great place to climb for two days.  There's also Eldorado Canyon and the Flatirons which makes for a lifetime of climbing all within short distance of town.  I'm sure there's plenty of places that I don't even know about.  Overall my stay here has proved that Boulder is a pretty sweet (albeit expensive) place to live.  

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