6.12.2012

Day Tripping

We headed up into the mountains today since Addy's mom and dad had the day off from work. First stop - Dinosaur Ridge in Morrison, CO. The girls had a good time checking out the dinos

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and digging for bones in the sand pit.

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We'd hoped to do the ridge tour but it was over 90 minutes long and we didn't think the girls' interest would hold out. Plus, it was almost lunch time and we were anxious to get to the real reason for our trip - lunch at BeauJo's in Idaho Springs, which John assured us was the Best. Pizza. Ever.

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I have to admit, the man knows his pizza! After stuffing ourselves, we took in some of the sites in downtown Idaho Springs,

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a quaint old mining town.

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I especially loved the hanging flower baskets on every light pole

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and the view of the falls from across the freeway.

The little girls added to their collection of babies -

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a bunny for Addy and a cat for Leia - so they were content to let us visit a few antique stores before they got totally bored.

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We'd passed the old Argo Mine on our way into town, so that was our next stop.

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A bus took us to the top of the long-closed mine,

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where we donned hard hats for a short trek into one of the tunnels.

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Hiking back downhill, past the very curious big-horned sheep hiding in the trees,

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we checked out the old tunnel entrance

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before moving into the mill

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where all the ore taken from the 4.5 mile mine tunnel was once processed.

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By this point, Leia was thoroughly bored; not even the ore cart choo-choo interested her.

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But the last part of the tour perked her right up. Panning for gold!

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Everyone got into the act -

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Leia and Addy were very serious and intent, swirling and agitating the dirt and water just like the guide showed them.

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Both were thrilled when they spotted those shiny little flakes of gold in their pans.

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Even at $1600/ounce, these tiny bits won't enhance their college funds, but I'm betting this is a memory they'll treasure for a long, long time.