Summer Fun @ Copper Mountain

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We spend a lot of weekends at Copper Mountain skiing in the winter. But it turns out they keep the place pretty busy in the summer too. Festivals and events are happening all the time. But during the weekdays it is nice and quiet and the kids love to go there and play. You can get a “summer season pass” where you can enjoy their activities. Ride the chair lift. Play mini golf. And do some of the stuff shown below. I may even drag my bike over there and have it drop me off up top and ride down.

Copper Mountain

The go karts are the best part.  Hard to find a decent track around here these days.  This one is short but got my juices flowing.  I started in the back and passed all cars.  But one girl was killing me.  Looking over her shoulder and blocking me in the turns.  She was probably 10.  I noticed her whole family cheering her on from the bleachers.  I kept working her and finally took her in traffic to win.

Copper Mountain

Bumper boats are always a good time.  Spraying other people with water in the face.  Kayla got pushed out in to the center of the lake (see below) where the fountain was spraying.  Her boat was going in circles and it was just raining down on her.  She was soaked when she got off the boat.  Still had fun!

Copper Mountain

See Sydney and Reagan to the left of the fountain on the zip line.  More zip fun in Colorado.  This one just runs across the lake.

Copper Mountain

Pretty big rock wall.  About 40′ up.  Quite the challenge for any climber.

Copper Mountain

Bouncing our way through summer! But it will be fun when this place goes back to snow and we ski once again!

Brown’s Canyon

AdventuresLeave a Comment

Sometimes our summer activities are limited by the ages and weights of the children. This activity has been on our todo list for a long time. We pass Brown’s Canyon every time we head to the hot springs and dreamt of the day we can get the kids on the water.

Rafting

The minimum age for class III rapids at about 2200 CFS is 6 years old. Kayla is 6! Off we went. We chose to ride with Noah’s Ark Rafting. They have a great program and the guides are super friendly. We had Tim leading us! We opted for a 1/2 day on Brown’s Canyon which is nearby Leadville. Just a bit south of Buena Vista actually. This areas was moved to National Monument status a few years ago. Very cool terrain. Lucky to have it so close.

Rafting

The water was snow about a day ago so it is pretty chilly. Although the guides are used to it and are not wearing much extra. We rented splash jackets (like rain coats) that helped keep the big sprays off you. Kim took her’s off part way. Your call based on temps.

Rafting

The kids ride rode up front 3 across. Kim and I were in back. Our guide in the middle. These boats have a sweet setup in the middle where the guide has big oars and does most of the maneuvering on the trip. You get involved by stroking with your paddle on his call. Just to help move the boat back or forward.

Rafting

I talked to the guide a bunch to try and understand more about rafting. I was curious about his deal there too. These guides were all from all over the US. They come for the summer and work 6 days a week running 2 trips a day. Fun summer on the water meeting fun folks! I clarified what we could expect on class III with the kids. They didn’t seem to concerned. Class III doesn’t seem to lose people out of the boat. Maybe once a week if someone is joking around. We were in good hands.

Rafting

We rode down the river a few miles before encountering the class III rapids. There were 7 of them. All with names and stories and unique characteristics. The kids got some big air on a few of them. It is daunting when you see that much water in front of the boat.

Rafting

We made it safely! The crew pulls the boats out. You are about 10 miles from the start. Jump on a school bus and they wisk you back to the start. A great time and I would recommend using these guys again!

So I forgot the GoPro at home. Bummer. I tried to film with my iPhone a bit. Just to give my Mom a sense of how I tried to kill her grandchildren this time. I couldn’t do the big rapids because I had to stroke. I captured a few but I have to put the phone down and paddle so it gets weird. Give it a watch anyway. I had the phone in a waterproof bag around my neck. GoPro would have better. Especially on Kayla!

The kids loved it. I hope we go again. There are other class III sections around here. Also some class IV and V too. Sydney is old enough next year for the class IV. And maybe we can get to class V someday. Seems like a worthy bucket list item!

Adventure Park

AdventuresLeave a Comment

Just down the road from our cabin, there is a ropes course called Brown’s Canyon Adventure Park.  It is a fun diversion right off the highway.  It costs about $55 and takes 2.5 hours to go through the whole course.  My kids love this kind of stuff so we made a morning of it.

Brown's Canyon Adventure Park

They have 6 different adventures/courses that you go through. You basically get assigned a guide that monitors your progress and helps you get through it all. Multiple groups are out there at the same time so the guides help with the scheduling. Reservations are recommended.

Brown's Canyon Adventure Park

You are strapped to the zip lines at all times with these cool 2 pronged leashes. The device only lets you detach one leash at a time so your are always connected while you move through the course and change zip lines from up high.

Brown's Canyon Adventure Park

They had an attraction called “Leap of Faith” where you climb up a telephone pole, stand on top, then jump to a trapeze bar. It wasn’t too bad but I am getting older and less trusting of heights.

Brown's Canyon Adventure Park

Unfortunately, Kayla did not weigh enough to go on this. Minimum weights are required so you don’t get stuck mid zip line somewhere. And it was a bit tall for her. But she is ready to go back next year.

Brown's Canyon Adventure Park

We weren’t allowed to take phones in because they might drop and hurt someone below. But I shot some video from the side to give you a sense of the adventure. Cool activity!

Lake Wawasee

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As a kid, I spent every summer weekend at Pier 151 on Lake Wawasee.  The “lake” as it was simply known to me was where we went to play in the water.  Boating, skiing, turtle hunting, and more.  As far as things I miss about my birthplace, that’s right up there.  The access to water and the warmth of that water is so nice compared to Colorado.  Our lakes are probably more beautiful because of the surroundings but you just can’t beat the access back in Indiana.

Lake Wawasee

So we took an impromptu drive from Colorado to Indiana for a few days.  My grandmother owns the place and died in the past year.  So this might be a final chance to enjoy the place and show my kids what I used to do on weekends.  Stuff like getting dragged behind a boat a break neck speeds.

Lake Wawasee

Or sit in particularly dangerous lawn furniture.  That chair has been there for 20 years and everybody does that once.

Lake Wawasee

Two of my favorite ladies out for a boat ride.

Lake Wawasee

My sister, Natalee, got some swans. OK? The kids get it.  Swan party.  Swan fight?  Whatever it is, they like it.

Lake Wawasee

The kids got a chance to play with all their cousins.  It is more kids than I can count.  They all get along so good and pick up right where they left off.  Even though they only see each other maybe once a year.

Lake Wawasee

Kayla was all about trying to fish.  Beats me.  Not my thing.  But she had a good time casting.  Future Uncle Chad helped set her up.

Lake Wawasee

Well, it was a quick trip but we enjoyed spending some time at the old place.  Thanks to Mom and Dad for hosting.  And to Natalee for keeping the dream alive.

Lake Wawasee

I branded the place years ago anyway.

Lake Wawasee

Oh and we had to stop at the Magic Wand on the way home. Kim and I went on a date their once. We drove up to the lake on a random weekday one summer. Kids.

Magic Wand

Luna

AnimalsLeave a Comment

We had been browsing the animal shelter lately. Even made a few trips inside to meet a few suspects. However, this one popped up Saturday night and by Sunday afternoon….

Dog

The meet-and-great was pretty exciting for everyone involved. Cuteness overload.

Dog

And with that…we had a new member to the family.

Dog

The big dogs are mine. We run together. We explore trails together. They love the kids but they aren’t lap dogs. Unless you want to be smashed. Now the lap dog is here. And she is pretty much fitting right in.

Welcome home, Luna!