This is the last West Coast Post. I stayed at the nice Teton hostel one more night before trekking south to Steamboat springs, Colorado. And ate a big bowl of cereal, 3 eggs with a bagel, two yogurts and some tea to hopefully stave off any hunger and extra road expense due to my stomach.
I grabbed some gas and cleaned off the ole motorcycle visor due to all the bugs making it difficult to see.
I came through the neat little town of Jackson before taking 191 South towards Colorado.
I was soon between more beautiful mountains and the elusive Willy Wonka river of chocolate. Look at all that Chocolaty goodness!!
The open range came next and I sang “Home on the Range” for a while after one of the ranches I drove past was called exactly that.
As I came up to Rock Springs, I saw this beautiful off road area right off the highway, and couldn’t help going off road for a bit to tear up the trails.
I didn’t see any signs or any other people enjoying these cool ruts, hills, rocky technical areas, or sandy bits. Exceptional stuff! : )
After playing around for a while and getting really hot with how much work it is, dirt biking challenging areas, I kept on to Steamboat Springs.
The Yampa River fest was happening and the spot right by the Library was being used in a competition. Kayakers would position themselves into the wake and do spins, rolls, and even flips! An announcer would cheer them on and or say some discouraging words when they would slip out of the wake and drift down river after a failed attempt.
I then went to Strawberry Park Natural Hot Springs and experienced the most beautiful hot springs I have ever been too. There were 6 different pools alongside the river all with varying temperatures that you could plop down in and enjoy the beautiful view of aspens around you and sounds of nature. These springs are about 20 minutes north of Steamboat in the middle of nowhere. No cell phone reception at all, and the most gorgeous cold mountain river flowing right alongside these wonderfully warm pools of water.
I couldn’t help but hop into each of them right as I got there. When you got too hot, if you were brave enough, you would jump into the river and be instantly cooled down. I did this a few times while making some new friends to play a “who can stay in the longest game.” Haha. Out of the four of us, the older ones dropped first and it was just down to me and this other young kid. At this point, I was quite numb and while laughing asked my new friend if he wanted to just tie because it wasn’t even hurting anymore. Hahahaha. He agreed and we both got out smiling and shivering. When you climbed back into the hot pools it really felt like a bunch of needles all over your skin or a sharp tingling sensation! It was wonderfully fun. I wish you guys could all have come with me so we could enjoy these hot springs together.
I was able to stay with a couch-surfing host named Robert in Steamboat and was shown incredible kindness. He is an exceptional human being who made me feel right at home. He invited me to join him and his friends for dinner and truly showed what it is like to love others like yourself.
I went downtown with him that night and enjoyed some live music. Robert had a kayak technical race he was doing in the morning and I went to watch.
In the fast flowing river you had to maneuver through a series of gates while being the fastest on the clock. Robert told me how some of the competitors, including his teacher, were very skilled kayakers winning other kayak events around the U.S.
I still had a lot to see in Steamboat with the ski jumps up the hill and downtown area.
There was a marathon that was being run through downtown and I hiked this hill to get a good lookout over the city.
This bench had a cool sign on it saying “Live everyday like it’s your last.” I really like how no one else was up here and the bench hadn’t been trimmed out. It looked a lot better all rugged and slightly hidden by the foliage.
There was also an amazing ride and slide I found at the top that I SO badly wished was in operation.
Robert very kindly texted me while I was exploring asking me if I wanted to go tubing with them. Um YES! I went quickly down the hill to my motorcycle to meet them at his apartment. His place is right on the river and we could hop in at his place and go roughly 3 miles downriver before taking the free bus back!
If you are thinking that the water was cold… you would be right. It was chilly and made you feel ever so alive! Rob had a dry suit he was wearing while I braced the cold in my swimsuit. The three of us, including Rob’s friend Jazzy, laughed and smiled and laughed our way downriver. As we floated by the restaurants downtown people couldn’t help but smile as I grinned at them from my tube. We stopped at one area with a warmer stream of water coming out into the main river. As I stood in the sun warming myself. There were two ladies getting into the summer spirit with their sunflower cruiser bicycle, flower shorts, and swimsuits, sunbathing on a nice blanket; creating a beautiful picture right on the water. With their permission, I was able to capture the moment with the camera on their phone. Lovely!
Robert, even though he worked the next day, let me stay an extra night on his couch so I could leave early in the morning, reminding me to also make sure to grab some breakfast from the fridge.
I headed out the next day after profusely thanking Robert for everything and showing me by example what an incredible world this can be with people as kind as him.
The route (14) to Fort Collins was beautiful and had a few exciting signs.
Making it back to Brian’s house we hoped on the roof with some of his roommates and enjoyed the view.
It’s been real.
P.S. I haven’t really raised any money when asking about donations from my blog, and still don’t want to try and make money through ads. I had hoped this would help supplement my adventures, and don’t know if I will continue blogging or not yet. I currently am planning on heading down through Texas then through New Orleans and who knows where after that. Europe is on the horizon, along with Central and South America.
I figured out that I like adventuring so much because I feel that I am accomplishing something. I am not sitting at a desk waiting for a paycheck, or playing into someone else’s financial aspirations. It feels good to be free.
If I had 500 million dollars, I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else… yet.