For our anniversary this year we took a family vacation in Colorado. Manitou Springs has been on our list of local places to visit for a while. We planned a short weekend trip for Ben, me, Jack, and my big belly. The photos are a mix from my phone and from Ben's good camera. You can see our entire sets on our flickr accounts here and here.
We drove into town midday Friday and started downtown. There's a very cute, if very touristy, downtown scene. Weird little souvenir shops and almost every other place sells ice cream. Best of all for Ben and Jack, there is an arcade. Rich with modern and vintage devices, we spent a good deal of quarters and dimes here. Jack was ecstatic about the rows and rows of ride machines.
After walking around a bit we checked into our little hotel and put our feet up, hoping Jack would take a little nap. He didn't, but Ben did, and I think he needed it more than Jack anyway. That guy works really hard.
We had a nice pizza dinner before going back downtown. Jack and I split off to wander, so Ben could spend some real time playing games at his speed. Then we met up for more games and ticket cashing in. It was a simple day, but we were super tired by the end of it.
Saturday we checked out of the hotel and went the short drive to our main attraction: the Cog Railway up Pike's Peak. This is a very old cog rail track that goes all the way to the summit of Pike's. That's right: I "climbed" a fourteener when I was 34 1/2 weeks pregnant! Honestly, I was pretty worried about handling the altitude, the tiny old fashioned seats, and being trapped without a bathroom for the 1.5 hour trip each way. But it ended up being very tolerable and quite enjoyable. We had pleasant seat-mates visiting from Minnesota who took a real shine to Jack and helped keep him entertained.
The views were amazing. The pace was slow enough to see the flowers as you passed by, so there wasn't any motion-sickness problem. I saw a pika, a mule deer, six marmots, and four big horn sheep! Ben took Jack out around the summit while I mostly staying put. It was a little alarming how fast my heart was pumping and breathless I felt, just from walking around the top. But we were only up there for 30 minutes before they boarded us back on the train. Not long enough for anyone to get really ill. Even so, I was glad to know the gift shop at the summit sold oxygen if I needed it.
While I stayed up here
They went down there
(None of us were as enthusiastic about the downhill trip. It was well past nap time and lunch time)
The train got back at the station in the afternoon and we were pretty tuckered. A quick stop to one of those springs for Ben to fill bottles, then we got lunch and went on the road home. What a wonderful little trip!