Shari, Elisabeth, and I took a mini vacation this weekend to Marble, Colorado, a tiny town about 30 minutes south of Glenwood Springs. We got up Friday morning and grabbed some Voodoo Donuts for our breakfast because it was our vacation and we wanted to treat ourselves. Then we drove over to Idaho Springs to eat pizza for lunch from Beau Jo’s because they had vegan options and Shari had never tried them. We sat outside on their large patio and enjoyed our pizza and the pleasant temperature. Turns out the pizza was more expensive than I would prefer pizza to cost so I likely won’t be going back, but as Shari pointed out, it’s really nice to go to a restaurant and have hot pizza brought out to you. Besides, it was our vacation, so I’ll accept the charge.
The little strip of Idaho Springs that we were in was really cute, lots of interesting shops including a chocolate shop, a pastry place, and a coffee shop (I didn’t go into any of these, haha). We did go into the soap shop, however, where we all purchased two soap bars each. My scents? Colorado Mountains and Honeysuckle. I couldn’t smell the soap through my mask so I’m happy to report that I chose well – I quite like the smells once I was able to smell them and the honeysuckle is on point.
We headed to our airbnb in Marble, Colorado, after that. The airbnb was this cute suite under the hosts’ house. There was a patio that overlooked Crystal River and the surrounding landscape. The river was at the bottom of a small but steep hill (the property owners had built stairs into the hill to make it easier to get down and up). Also at the bottom was a fire pit with large marble blocks for seats and a swinging bench. The set up was quite nice and the area was beautiful. We made a fire the first night and roasted hot dogs and marshmallows. It felt magical and wonderful. There’s something about being near water and controlling a fire that is just great. Shari was teaching me and Elisabeth how to make a fire since neither of us knew. I’d like to think I learned something and could maybe start my own fire one of these days.
Before making our fire we had a bit of afternoon to spend so we visited Marble Mill Site Park where a trail wound its way around remnants of an old marble mill from the early 1900s. I don’t remember much of the history of the mill except that the marble for the exterior of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC came from this place as well as the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier monument. That in itself is pretty fascinating because this place is in the middle of nowhere. The town is so tiny that it only boasts one restaurant and its coffee shop is run by volunteers. The general store closes at 5pm and there really isn’t a main street. So the fact that in its history, the town ran a marble mill that produced marble for two important pieces is neat and pretty incredible. The area we explored was cool even if I didn’t know its history. There were tall pillars and giant marble blocks (see to the left) and lots of concrete and railroad track pieces. For most of our wandering we were totally alone and so it felt a little eerie and a little other worldly, even though Elisabeth kept us up on what we were seeing thanks to the brochures at the park’s entrance. I really enjoyed that walk, there’s something fun about walking around a place that has chunks of marble scattered here and there.
Saturday morning we ate breakfast outside (leftover donuts and chips and dip for me, hey, I’m on vacation 😉 ) on the patio before making our way to see coke ovens in Redstone, a nearby town. Coke ovens were another historical point of interest in the area and while they were somewhat interesting to see (they’re like these giant honeycomb type brick ovens that were used to melt coal), walking around the little town of Redstone was more fun. The town gives off this very artsy vibe with many of the houses producing an eclectic feel. There was a general store here too that we ended up going into – it felt very hipster-esque with two young guys running it and another young man dropping off free newspapers (created by the town) and grabbing a coffee before heading off to his next drop off location. There were lots of antique shops too. I wonder how so many antique shops can exist in the same place, or so close to one another, where is each place finding enough antiques to stay in business? The population of the area isn’t that big, I can’t imagine there’s lots of antiques lying around. It’s a mystery.
We ate some of our snacks in the small park of Redstone after our explorations before heading over to Avalanche Hot Springs for our main event – relaxing in warm water! We spent over 4 hours in the handful of pools the hot springs had set up and it was great. You’ll have to read more about this part of my trip in my upcoming What I like Wednesday post. For now, know that we met a dog while we were there (that I imagine lives on property) and we all played fetch with him. The whole thing was really cute, the dog would run up to anyone close to the edge of a pool and he would drop a tiny stick or piece of wood and then wait for you to throw it. It was adorable.
Saturday evening, after returning from the hot springs, we ate fajitas outside and then played Golf, a card game that Shari taught me and Elisabeth (she knows so many games!). We headed back to town Sunday morning and got home in the early afternoon. It was a really great vacation and I’m already dreaming of future trips!