(July 1 – 9, 2019) There are two seasons in Colorado: 4th of July and winter, someone told me. “If you visit Colorado in summer, you stay and in winter, you ski.”
After leaving the Rocky Mountains, I drove to Keystone where my friend owns a rental vacation property. When my friend knew I was in the Rocky Mountains, she offered me her place to stay for free. As I am fond of a small town parade on the 4th of July Independence Day, she emailed me some information on a variety of events in that area.
Driving to Keystone, I was still itching because of the skin hives caused by food poisoning. I was somewhat relaxed thinking of sleeping in a town not a campground. I also thought about seeing a doctor on the next day, if necessary. My health insurance doesn’t cover “Out of Network Service.” It has a High Deduction of $7,900. As I haven’t seen a doctor this year, I figured the cost from my pocket, might be $500 for an urgent care visit and most likely blood test and etc. A miracle happened; the itching problem was gone the next morning. Wow and No Ouch!
Staying in Keystone, I enjoyed the lifestyle at high altitude: my friend’s property (9,321 feet above sea level =2,841 meters), Wholefood Grocery store (9,097 feet), Dillon Reservoir (9,017 feet), and Keystone Overlook Summit (11,640 feet = 3,548 meters). High altitude didn’t bother me this time as I was adjusted gradually by visiting many national parks. Bicycle lanes are everywhere here. Public transportation is free. The bus routes and schedules are convenient. I hardly drove my car but rode my bike, walked, and took buses.
One day, taking a guided tour with a volunteer park ranger, I learned that about 15 million people visit this area (the White River National Forest) annually. There are four major ski resorts here: Breckenridge, Copper Mountain, Keystone, and Vail. They lease the land from the government. In summer, ski resorts open for other activities: mountain biking, ski camp, hiking trails, concerts, and etc. On weekends, I took free Gondola rides in Keystone, Copper Mountain, and Breckenridge Ski Resorts. At the summit, I thought about many activities I could do easily year around.