The Rocky Mountains - Vacation, Part 1

This month, Caleb and I celebrated our five year anniversary. FIVE YEARS, PEOPLE. Time is a funny thing---it seems like only yesterday I was walking down the altar to say "I do," yet it feels like we've been together forever. It feels like it has always been "us." 

However, it DID feel like the last vacation we took together was forever ago! And the two of us decided that it was about time for a road trip. An adventure. So we packed our bags and headed northwest. Most of it was new territory for both of us, and our goal was to get to the coast and enjoy every moment in between. 

Our first day was spent driving, driving, driving through western Kansas. That's a long stretch of flat lands. At the end of the day, we settled in Estes Park, Colorado, a small tourist town in the mountains...

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Estes Park, CO.

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We stayed the night at the haunted Stanley Inn. (Thanks for the Anniversary gift, Mom and Dad!) This hotel was the inspiration behind Stephen King's "The Shining." No, we didn't bump into any ghosts---although wandering around the dimly lit ballroom at night is a little unnerving.

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Me, being dramatic. 

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Caleb, being good looking. 

The next day, we walked around the shops, bought some fudge, and then hiked up a mountain.

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When we got back down the mountain, we decided it was time to head out. Our next destination---Yellowstone National Park. 

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Caleb was anxious to get there. 

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Driving through the Grand Teton National Park in northwest Wyoming was simply magical. I beheld some of the most breathtaking views I have ever seen. My photographs do it injustice!

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After hours of driving through tall pines and snow-capped mountains, we finally arrived at Yellowstone.

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Old Faithful made me wonder how safe we really were, chilling out on the continental divide. 

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Note to all future Yellowstone tourists---bring parkas. It was FREEZING!!!

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Hot springs. 

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Caleb was really hoping to see some bison or a bear, and we got so excited when we finally spotted one way off in the distance! We pulled over and took a billion pictures (give or take a few).  Finally, we moved on---and after a couple miles, there were a few more bison. And then a few more. Eventually, we were surrounded by a herd. They were everywhere---even crossing the street in front of our car.

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To top things off, we saw a wolf... 

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Okay, so maybe this fella was in a wildlife reserve, but it was still fun to see him and his pack howling at the evening sky. 

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So there you have it! The first neck of our journey. Anybody have vacation plans for this year?