Last Thursday, I took Kirby on a brief end-of-summer / birthday vacation to Denver to see his Uncle Dave and to see the mountains for the very first time. Although we were only there until Sunday morning, we had a great time.
On Friday, we celebrated Kirby's 5th birthday with a trip to the Children's Museum of Denver. I was actually surprised by how small it was. Of course, few children's museums can compare to the one we have here in Houston, which was already large before it was recently expanded, and regardless of the Denver museum's size, Kirby had a fun afternoon there. Here, Kirby practices his firefighting skills on the museum's fire engine:
The museum also had a train room, where Kirby spent time building and playing with various layouts. These two pictures were taken with my cell phone, hence the blurriness:
Friday evening, we went to a friend's house and celebrated Kirby's birthday with a small party, cake and ice cream.
On Saturday, David took Kirby and me on an excursion up into the mountains. Our first stop was the scenic Red Rocks amphitheater, overlooking Denver. Here, Kirby scratches his head as he ponders the scale and the scenery of the facility:
Afterwards, we drove up to Mount Evans. The highest paved road in North America leads to the 14,264-foot peak, where a small visitors center and observatory are located. From the top of the peak, you can quite literally look down on the world:
Given its proximity to Denver as well as the relatively easy access afforded by the paved road, Mt. Evans is a rather popular tourist attraction. Kirby and I took the rocky trek up the pathway from the visitors center to the peak rather slowly, and even then I sometimes felt like I was going to pass out due to the thin air:
Kirby seemed to do just fine in the high altitude. He has now officially been atop a fourteener!
David goes up into the mountains rather frequently, but the only time he ever seems to encounter mountain goats is when I'm with him. These guys were grazing below the summit of Mt. Evans:The peak of Mt. Evans overlooks Summit Lake, which at 12,830 feet is the highest park in the Denver Mountain Park System. Here's my brother David, posing in front of the lake and the alpine tundra backdrop:
Saturday night we went into town and dined at the Cherry Cricket, whose burgers (featured on a recent episode of the Travel Channel's Man vs. Food) really are as good as advertised. Kirby also spent some time playing in the pool at Dave's new apartment complex.
All in all, a great trip in spite of its briefness. Kirby had a great time and tells me that he's already ready to go back to the mountains to see Uncle Dave again!