A Week in Colorado Part 2

Part two of my Colorado adventure is here! If you missed part one, get caught up here!

Day 4: Coors Brewery and Boulder 

There are so many breweries in Colorado that you could plan an entire trip around tasting local beers. The Coors brewery is located in Golden where we were staying, so we decided if we were going to do a brewery tour, it had to be at Coors. It’s the largest single-site brewery in the world, so it was cool to compare it to the small craft breweries we frequent in Charleston. The tour was self-guided, so we felt like we didn’t learn as much as we wanted to. It was still a worthy stop on our trip if only for the free Blue Moon at the end!

We headed to Boulder that afternoon as several people told us it was a can’t-miss city. We stopped into Mountain Sun Pub and Brewery for a delicious lunch and walked around Pearl Street to explore the shopping. Thursday was our most relaxed day, and we needed it after climbing to crazy altitudes and hiking the first part of the week!

Day 5: Red Rocks Park 

On Friday, we woke up ready to tackle Red Rocks Park. Hunter and I knew we wanted to return after seeing Phoenix at the amphitheater there. We started out with a trail that runs through the rocks and it was one of the most fun trails we did all week. Major Jurassic Park vibes.

We headed back to the amphitheater to check it out while there wasn’t an event going on. There were tons of people doing workouts on the steps. Especially at 6,400 feet, I could not relate to the people doing a burpee on each of the 70 rows of the amphitheater. Hunter decided he’d run up part of the 380 steps, and afterwards he said he felt like his lungs were bleeding. I think we’ll leave the working out at Red Rocks to the Coloradans!

Day 6: Downtown Denver

My sweet friend Katherine from high school lives in Denver, so we met up with her on Saturday to explore downtown. She took us to a delicious brunch at Devil’s Food in the Washington Park neighborhood. Afterwards we headed to Union Station where you can grab a beer, pastry, or an Amtrack train. Across the street, we stopped in Tattered Cover, a book store you could hole up in for hours. 

At least three people told Hunter and me to visit Little Man Ice Cream in the Highland neighborhood, so we stopped there for an end of the day treat. Thanks for showing us around Katherine!

We didn’t want our week in Colorado to end! Hence the sad faces on the plane. We are headed to Boston for a few days in July, so we are glad to have another trip to look forward to!

A Week in Colorado

Last Sunday, my boyfriend Hunter and I hopped on a plane to Denver, Colorado. Hunter had a voucher from Southwest so we took advantage of it and booked a whole week out West. We hiked, road tripped, danced to Phoenix, and took in a view from 14,115 feet. An adorable Airbnb in Golden, just 30 minutes from downtown, was our home base. 

It was so nice to unplug and explore a new place. I split up the recap of our trip into two parts, so stay tuned next week for our final three days in Denver! I sprinkled recommendations throughout, but feel free to ask me more about anything or add your own in the comments!

Day 1: Peak to Peak Scenic Byway and Rocky Mountain National Park

Hunter and I kicked off our trip by driving three hours from Golden through Central City and Black Hawk (both old mining towns) to Rocky Mountain National Park. There’s a few places to stop and take in the mountain views along the way. Denver got a late snow in May so there were still plenty of snow-capped peaks. 

As soon as we got to the park we headed for Bear Lake. It immediately started raining, but it was actually pretty over the water! When the sun came out, we hiked to Alberta Falls. This was a super fun trail with plenty of scenic views. Because of the snow melting, there was a ton of water flowing down the mountain. Alberta also had a gorgeous view from the top.  

Day 2: Colorado Springs

We hopped in the car again for a road trip to Colorado Springs. We had a jeep tour planned, but our original route was closed for bug spraying. Our tour guide took us to Pike’s Peak instead, which turned out to be an incredible adventure (it reaches 14,115 feet)! We were glad we didn’t have to drive up the mountain ourselves. Our tour guide told us there is a big race up the mountain every year, where drivers will take 90 degree turns at 40 mph and the straightaways at 150 mph. What!

Charleston is at sea level, so being almost three miles above where we normally live made us feel like we were on another planet. The view is so worth it! We were literally standing in the clouds. 

On our way out of Colorado Springs, we stopped by Garden of the Gods to check out the red rock formations.

Day 3: Biking Golden, My 25th Birthday, and a Phoenix concert 

On Wednesday I turned 25! We rented bikes from a local shop in Golden for the morning. We started on the Clear Creek Trail, which runs along the creek that flows right through downtown (the water was freezing but the Coloradans seemed to love swimming and kayaking in it). The path eventually takes you towards the Coors brewery and goes all the way to Denver. The inclines ended up being intense for people that don’t live in a high altitude. I was DYING by the end of our ride but biking is always so much fun! After the accidental workout, we grabbed lunch at Bob’s Atomic Burgers and birthday cupcakes at Gold Mine Cupcakes (both delicious)!

When we were planning our trip, I saw that one of my favorite bands, Phoenix, was playing 15 minutes from where we were staying AND on my birthday. Hunter will never let me live down the fact that I screamed ON MY BIRTHDAY!? when I saw the schedule. Red Rocks Amphitheater is also the coolest place to see a concert. If I lived in Denver I’d be there 24/7. 

I’d say ringing in a quarter century in Colorado was a birthday for the books! Stay tuned for part 2 coming next week!

Madewell x Paper Meets Pearl Event

Many of you may not know that I’ve worked as a stylist for the past year at my favorite store, Madewell. My love affair began when I discovered their new Atlanta store in 2007. They didn’t even have a shoppable website yet! I love everything about the understated yet cool and unexpected vibe of the brand, and I’d always secretly wanted to work there. When I needed a part-time gig after I moved to Charleston, the King Street store was calling my name. As my photo business has grown, I decided I had to bid Madewell adieu (don’t worry, I’ll still be in the store 24/7). I had my last day of styling this week, but I wanted to share a recent store event I photographed with Charleston’s own Paper Meets Pearl

In addition to blogging about her fashion inspiration and DIY home projects, Kelly works at the SPCA helping animals find loving homes! Her event at Madewell raised money and awareness for the SPCA, and she tried on some looks from the new summer collection. Thanks for stopping by, Kelly!

Shoutout to my Madewell family! I love you all!

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