Have I got a 49th birthday celebration for you!

How’s this sound?

Take a few days off from work. Get a hold of as many of your motorcycle riding friends as you can to see who has the time and the butt power to hang with you on a long-ass ride. Oh and let’s not forget the hubby…yeah, even though he does not ride at the moment, he should also join you on your crazy hair-balled idea of a good time for your 49th birthday.

Now, let’s see…What would be a great way to celebrate? Oh yeah…by riding to the southwestern part of the state of Colorado…um, about 400 miles one-way and let’s see if we can’t fit a scenic byway in on the action…one that you haven’t completed yet would fit the bill.

Lastly, but most importantly for your daily recovery is a nice relaxing place to stay. Some place that you can kick your shoes off and not have to get all gussied up to go eat at a restaurant every day. A fully equipped vacation rental would work nicely here.

Ok, so that’s it! That’s what I did for my 49th birthday celebration. I rode on my motorcycle with a riding buddy over a scenic byway I hadn’t been on for my tour all the way to Durango, Colorado to hang out at a nice relaxing vacation rental as I rode around the southwestern part of the state for a few days, covering another two more byways.

Oh and then there was the day of my birthday. On this particular day, I dragged my hubby out into the southern Colorado Rockies to take a 1.8 mile hike up a 1650 foot elevation gain to view a 365 foot waterfall over which a 100-year-old power plant was situated. Now that’s what I call pampering myself.

bridal_veil_hydro_052413-72Well, not really. I mean, I am 49 and a tad overweight, but I did hike all the way up above the Bridal Veil Falls Hydro-Electric power plant of Telluride…all 1.8 miles plus 1650 feet in elevation gain…not just to say that I did it, but to see this wonder up close and personal. To enjoy my special day with my wonderful husband…oh and then there were the Telluride Truffles…yeah, I just had to earn all those calories, dontchya know.

Bridal Veil Falls Hydro-Electric plant

This building is over 100 years old and is the second oldest still functioning hydro-electric plant in the state of Colorado. The oldest plant isn’t too far away in Ophir, Colorado. Bridal Veil supplies 25% of the power to Telluride. You can hike up to this plant or drive up. But, it is heavily advised that you use a 4-wheel-drive vehicle to drive up as the road is pretty rough.

Bridal Veil Falls Hydro-Electric plant hike

The hike up to the plant takes you along the heavily switch-backed road of Black Bear Pass. You can certainly drive along this lower part of the road, but my hubby and I took the hard way…we walked, er hiked…um, more like huffed and puffed our way to just above the plant. The last 50 feet of the hike was crawling over several feet of snow that snuggly grasped the edge of the cliff and the trail that we were on. Yes, there was a steep drop-off from the snow drift, so yes; we crawled over it, because we were too freaked out that we might lose our footing.

When we made it to just above the plant, we were not just ecstatic that we made it this far for two older, sort of over-weight people, but because the views up that high were so breathtakingly amazing. They’re just a tad difficult to describe, so you will just have to take a look at the photos I’ve included with this blog post.

Not only were the two of us taken away by the sheer beauty of the scenery, but were just a tad bit proud of ourselves for being the only pair of mid-century people up this high on the mountain. Although we really did not pass too many people on the hike…only about a handful… they were all half our age and a whole lot lighter than us. So yes, we were feeling pretty cocky if I don’t say so myself. I won’t mention the immense pain I was feeling when we finally made it back to my hubby’s truck…except that my lower back and hips weren’t doing too well.

I found it quite interesting to meet up with a younger couple who had come up behind us after we had crawled over the snow drift. It turned out that they were from Buena Vista, Colorado and in Telluride for the Mountain Film in Telluride. The guy was a freelance writer and had written some pieces for Colorado Central Magazine. He had also mentioned having had some interviews with the High Country News, which would be cool if he had successfully landed a job with them. I like it when anyone can reach their dreams early.

As a side note…I just looked up the various websites that I linked in the previous paragraph and realized that the Telluride Mountain Film festival celebrated its 35th year on the same weekend of my birthday. Now that’s pretty freaky in my mind, since my dream many years ago (during my undergrad studying Mass Communication) was to be a videographer/editor. It figures, huh? Things just keep coming around to tap me on the shoulder throughout my life.

Tasty end-of-the-day Treats

Anyway, back to the hike – after taking in the view for a while and patting ourselves on the back more than once, my hubby and I headed back down the mountainside. My next mission was to enjoy the end of the day with a couple of truffles from Telluride Truffle. I figured I had exercised enough calories off to savor the flavor of at least two tasty truffles.

My hubby and I enjoyed each nibble we took out of our truffles; I had the Black Diamond, a succulently flavorful dark chocolate truffle with Tequila flavored gnash. My hubby favored the Powder Day which came as a white chocolate treat filled with sweetened cream with almond.

As we meandered back over the 100-mile trek to Durango, my hubby and I smiled as we recalled our day-long adventure climbing up to Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride.


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