What a week we had in Fort Collins, Colorado last week to celebrate our anniversary. We drove most of the day on Monday from St. Louis to our AirBnB in Fort Collins so by the time we arrived we were pretty tired and ready for food and relaxation.
On Tuesday we woke up early and headed in the direction of the mountains. It only took about 20 minutes to be immersed into them, with rockies on either side of us we drove in a bewildered state of awe, climbing elevation and taking in the views. We finally decided on a trail to hike, with no expectations of what was ahead we took off with a hope to see some pretty views and find some stillness. We were elated by what we stumbled upon.
We followed a narrow dirt trail that took us through and around green mountain sides, rockie mountain sides and everything in between. We had to keep crossing over a rapid stream and problem solve on what the best way was to get Z over to the other side. She loved it! She jumped right in and would be so proud of herself when she got onto the grass again.
We just kept going, with no expectations and no time limits. Stopping here and there to take in the view, catch our breath and take some pictures. We treated the camera as an old film camera and did not review any pictures until we were back in St. Louis and missing the feelings we had while hiking.
When we reached the highest point of our hike, we stopped to eat, stare at the beautiful scenery, meditate and bask in the peacefulness & stillness that we were experiencing. I have honestly never felt anything quite like it. With no noise around you but birds and the wind against the trees, you had no choice but to be incredibly present; it would have been a shame to think about anything but the serene moments we were partaking in.
It brought Teddy and I to a whole other level of connectedness. With the silence all around us we felt so much peace. We just would look at one another and feel nothing but joy. Wanting to stay in this state forever, we kept walking and looking around in awe.
With no other humans within miles of us, no cell phones, no chatter, no hustle and bustle, we found the most happiness that we have felt, ever.
I love that we have found something that brings us both the same level of joy and present awareness. We had to check the map and figure out where we were when we hit the snow and the trail was no longer as obvious as it had been before. We realized that the trail we had been following looked more like it had been made by a fore-wheeler once we got to the snowy side of the mountain. We had to regroup and make sure that we were walking towards one of the properties out in the distance but were still actually on the trail we were intending to hike. We had to lean into trust that we were headed in the right direction and that we would be back before dark.
so. much. joy.
As we kept walking we went back down to a lower elevation with less snow, more green lucious grass and warmer weather. We kept having to take off layers and add them, with the mountains creating different climates each mile. We had so much fun just experiencing what nature wanted to provide.
Our hearts were in those meager 8 miles that we hiked and found out a lot about ourselves. We realized that this little, amazing, awe-inspiring hike that we just went on sparked an interest for a deeper journey. We have found a new hobby and we are only mere amateurs in a whole new world to the both of us; we couldn’t be more excited to experience the peace and tranquility that nature provides to those who search for it.
Z got back and zonked out until the next morning. She was so excited to go on another hike the next day! As soon as we got out her rope and our shoes she jumped right up and walked over to the car. I think she found herself in the mountains too.
All in all, that first day of hiking brought us so much joy. We hiked the Hewlett Gulch trail in Roosevelt National Park and went the long way around the mountain off the main trail. After realizing what some seclusion into nature can do for the soul, we are hooked. We want to move to Colorado once Teddy is done with school in St. Louis.
I have so many more pictures to share from the other days in Colorado, so stay tuned!!