Vail to Denver, Uniquely

Two things motivated this story.  The first is a website sponsored by the Town of Vail called solepower.org (very cool).  This should be a blogpost in itself, but as you can see if you visit the site, it’s a way to log miles walked or pedaled in lieu of driving.  Check out the Team Leaderboard and you’ll see that the Antlers is kicking just about everyone’s butt, with the exception of our friends (ahem) over at the West Vail Liquor Mart.  If you scroll the Solepower blog, you just might also see some smack talk between the two of us.  It’s all good.

The second big driver was just the attraction of being one of the few people (to say the least) to ride a bike from Vail to Denver for a business meeting.  Call me crazy … everyone does.

So Sunday afternoon at 2:00 (after walking 18 holes and shooting a million, by the way) I set out from home on my trusty Giant armed with rain gear, a couple fresh jerseys and a healthy supply of “vitamin i” in my backpack.

3:00 found me at the East Vail exit feeling great.

Shortly after passing our namesake signage on the way up, by 4:20 I was cresting Vail Pass and happy, happy, happy.

      

A mere thirty-five downhill minutes later it was hi and bye to Frisco.

Who knew that the bikepath across the Dillon Dam was painted bright pink … what’s that all about?

Forty-five minutes further up the road, I pedalled into Keystone.  It was at this point that I started feeling less than 100%.  When I realized that one of my original two water bottles was still half full, it dawned on me that I wasn’t drinking nearly enough and might be getting dehydrated.  Duh.  In retrospect,  I was already well beyond what I could fix by simply drinking a bunch.   In fact, although I didn’t know it yet, I was toast.  More on that later.

After hanging at Keystone from 6:00 to about 6:30, eating power bars, drinking Gatorade, drinking Gatorade and eating power bars, I hit the road still foolish enough to think that Loveland Pass summit would be no sweat.

Notice that the sky is a bit dusky.  Right.  What should be an hour and change took me over two (with more than a couple catch-your-breath stops (piss me off).  At that point I had been on the road for six and a half hours, it’s beyond “dusky” and I hadn’t pee’d once.  Pardon me, but this isn’t good.

Nevertheless, the gratification of being at the top, combined with less than no alternatives of what to do next, made for an exciting (shall we say?) descent.  Just me, my bike, my little headlight (thank you again, Evelyn) and an occasional eighteen wheeler.  Yipee.  By the time I rolled into Georgetown at 9:30 I was beyond pooped, and really, really happy to call it a day.

I posted a picture of my luxurious motel room on Facebook and quickly got a “Motel 3?” response from Boomer.  I replied “two point five”.   But who really cares?

I should back up and tell you that the destination for this (not ill advised, but poorly executed) adventure was a CACI Executive Committee meeting at the University Club, a block from the capitol building in Denver.  Prior to being dim-witted enough to let myself dry out, I was sharp enough when I met with them the week before, to ask Darla and Eliza (our queens of PR) if they could deliver my suit to said destination.  Brill, and thanks.

Day 2 -Rise and shine … 7:00, out the door, back on the steed and Ya-hoo … another 18 mile thrilling descent into Idaho Springs.  And this time I can SEE WHERE I’M GOING!  It just doesn’t get any better.

From there, it’s a not-too-tough climb up Floyd Hill.  Now I’m no medic, but methinks that the dehydration screwed up my system beyond what guzzling water and one night’s fitfull sleep could fix.  When it took me at least twice as long as it should have, to climb FH and everything else, I was sure of it.

Reminiscent of Loveland Pass, reaching the crest of the hill next to Lookout Mountain got me stoked, with those familiar great views both east and west.

  

Toasted or not, the E-ticket ride down Route 40 is a hoot.  I confess to being a little preoccupied with the prospect of having to crawl back up that same path later in the day, but it was still really fun.

Once in Denver, I made my way east on Colfax (bad idea) and some side streets (slightly better) until I eventually reached my final resting place destination.

It was 10:30 and I had time to shower (thanks U Club), change, and get ready for our meeting.  I did my best to not let on that I felt somewhat like badly overcooked spaghetti, and seemingly got away with it, as the meeting went well and we adjourned just prior to 2:00 like usual.

When it came time to head out, I shared my adventure with Dan, Ann and Chuck, but predictably left out the part that I felt like hell and should have been ever so much smarter about drinking an ample amount of water along the way.  They were each more impressed than was deserved and Dan even went so far as to email out my undertaking to the entire CACI board.  Slightly embarrassing, but okay.

True to form, Ann took a picture.

Once changed back into my bike gear, I texted Evelyn that all was well (although my pants were on fire), telling her that the meeting went fine, but I didn’t feel great and was starting to question my ability to make it all the way home.  I presumed that we would communicate more and ultimately make arrangements to meet in Idaho Springs or similar.   You have to know that Ev was never too fond of the whole idea in the first place.  A short time later I got a return text telling me that she was passing Frisco and “on her way”.  At that point I had mixed emotions, part of me unhappy with her rush to judgment (and action), doubting my abilities altogether.  The other half of me was completely of the attitude, “OH THANK GOD!”.  By the time she picked me up just as I was about to begin the long ascent up to Lookout Mountain, the latter feeling had won out completely.

In sum, I think I can claim to be one of the few people to ever ride from Vail to Denver for a business meeting, but it does still leave me with one more goal for the future … down AND back.  And I’ll be a LOT smarter about how much water I drink!

    

 

“As the Antlers Turn”……16

I’m Baaaack and oh what a summer it has been.  Here’s a few things that haven’t been reported in the past couple of months (partly because I’ve been busy and mostly because I wasn’t sure I should admit it.).

Every time you think you’ve seen it all……….

– A guest finds animal teeth in a dresser drawer.  Upon further review, it turns out it is a human tooth broken in two pieces, from a small child, hidden away by the parents, who forgot to put the quarter under the pillow.

-The employees throw a going away party for Sara and the building manager gets a call for a noise disturbance.  He doesn’t answer the phone because he just fell into the pool after celebrating a victory in a beer pong match.

-Rob travels to Australia with a group representing the Town of Vail to “sell” our resort and never had a chance to play golf.

-While the rest of the country is suffering in record setting heat and humidity, Vail is 71 degrees with puffy white clouds.

-For whatever reason the New York Stock Exchange is boiling over, freezing and boiling over again but our winter bookings are ahead of last year.  Go figure.

-We have purchased and placed new lobby furniture which includes amongst other items, leather couches (smells good).  We also have new carpet in the lobby and elsewhere (that smells good too).

-My son got married in Vail and the Antlers served as host for all of our guests.  As an outsider looking in for once, this is a great place to have a Vail wedding.   (I’m coming back and I’m staying at the Antlers.)

-A squatter moves into the Antlers and goes unnoticed for 3 days.  He is seen only at night between the hours of 10 and 12 PM rummaging through the garbage cans.  Finally we set a trap and catch the little rascal.  The raccoon is relocated to another property.

-Isabelle, Magda and Tony’s daughter, has turned one year old and she is already familiar with RDP (our reservation software).  We plan on having her cover some vacation slots when she is needed.

-Darci adopted a dog for her daughter Mariah.  He is 3 inches long and weighs 7 ounces and is still growing.  He was “misplaced” a while back but Joel found him later in Mariah’s school lunch bag between 2 oreoes.

-Mark is back for the winter season.  He returneth from the bed and breakfast in Sicily, Italy and can still brew some of the best lobby coffee in Vail.  I walk up there every day for another cup of “Markbucks”.

-Amy has been doing mountain bike races every weekend this summer.  She has been very careful and avoids crashes because the doctor told her one more mis-hap and they will need to do a body transplant.

It’s nearing the end of August and as it goes “what happened to the summer?”  Labor Day weekend is closing in and the Fall Season will surely bring new stories and adventures to the Antlers.  Personally, I look forward to the additional compliment of owners that arrive for that particular weekend.

Let the pen write and the story be told.

Greg

 

 

 

Live Streaming of the Antlers homeowners meeting September 4

Live Antlers owner meeting Live streaming, begins 4:00pm on Sunday, September 4th.


View the meeting from the image above, click buttom right button for full size.  Password required.  Please call Antlers to receive Owner password.  For the Chat below, please pose your question or comments but do include your name and/or room number in your message.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture from last year’s meeting

Fancy lake and Fancy Pass hike to Missouri lakes

Fancy Pass and Fancy Lake loop hike going to Missouri Lakes up in the Holy Cross Wilderness area is one of those “must do” type of Vail area hikes if you are spending a week or more in the Vail Valley.  It is moderate day hike and takes anywhere from 4.5 to 6 hours.  It is a 45 minute drive each way from Vail but well worth it.  It is South from Vail on Highway 24 through the towns of Minturn and Redcliff.  Get directions at the Antlers at Vail front desk.  The trail starts at an elevation of 10,100 feet and can top out at 12,600 so you are quite high up.

 Fancy lake (seen in picture above) is the first stop on this counter clockwise hike.  But you can do the hike in either direction.  You can do Missouri lakes first in a clockwise direction and then over Fancy pass, then down pass Fancy Lake and back to the trailhead.


View Fancy Pass, Missouri Lakes loop in a larger map

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There are some steep trails as you head up above timberline

Lots of snow out here for August 10th, wow

The top of Fancy Pass at 12,600 feet (we think)

Upper Missouri Lake

 Some Llamas enjoying a hike of their own

Lower Missouri Lake

Another hiking bridge

Wildflowers up in the Holy Cross Wilderness area, with plenty of snow for mid-August

 

Sage Adventures Vail Razor buggy tour

A couple of us went on a Polaris Razor off road adventure tour with Vail’s Sage Adventures whose Vail adventure office is over in Lionshead, just 100 yards from the Antlers at Vail condominiums.  The site of the jeep riding was about 30 minutes west of Vail near Castle Peak.   Our tour guide “Cole” set us up with our machines and off we went.   We climbed quite a bit of vertical to get to altitude and it was a nice pretty area with specatuclar views.  We were searching for some moose that Cole said were up there but we just ran into a few deer (well, maybe we didn’t RUN into them).  The Panageas family staying at the Antlers at Vail during this week, was also on the tour.  Dad and all three kids all rode in one buggy.  Mom was at the conference at the Marriott (too bad for mom.)  $330 gets you the buggy for a 2.5 hour tour + snack, etc.  Nice package when you can get 4 people for the ride.  Beats a jeep tour in my book.  Chris R.


Driving some Razorbacks near Wolcott Colorado, just 25 minutes from Vail and the Antlers at Vail

Dad the driver and three kids along for the ride !

Experienced Rednecks

Helmets on and ready to go

Cole from Sage Adventures is pointing out the view to the New York mountain range and the Beaver Creek resort.

The Panageas family out in front

A horseman watching his sheep up near Castle Peak

Save 30 Percent on Vail Lodging, Lift Ticket Package This Winter

Antlers at Vail Hotel Offers Prime Season Ski, Snowboard Deal

Antlers at Vail's Value Vail Ski Package

Photo by Jack Affleck

August 1, 2011 – Vail, CO – This winter at the height of ski season, the Antlers at Vail hotel offers its popular “Value Vail” package.  From January 7 to February 15, 2012, guests can enjoy 30% savings off regular prices.  Rates for the five-night package start at just $1,134 per person per night for four people in a two-bedroom condo–including four-day lift tickets for all four skiers! 

General Manager Rob LeVine recommends booking early to secure a package.  “We sold out of the Value Vail package last year, and we anticipate even more skiers and snowboarders at the resort this year,” he says.  “To get the deal, we recommend that travelers lock in dates and packages as soon as possible.”

The Antlers Vail offers condominiums ranging from studio suites up to four bedrooms with fully-equipped kitchens, fireplaces, outdoor balconies, free Internet access and free heated indoor parking – plus free equipment storage for skiers and boarders.  Every room provides plenty of space to spread out and all the comforts of home, and the Antlers’ Vail-insider staff is on call to answer questions big or small.

Conveniently located 200 yards from the Vail Gondola, numerous restaurants, galleries and shops are within walking distance and the free Vail town shuttle stops just footsteps away.  Named the Vail Valley ‘Green Business of the Year’ in 2009,  the Antlers Vail condominiums is also proud to be named a Platinum Service Award Winner by the Vail Valley Partnership.  For more information, call 1-800-843-8245 or visit www.antlersvail.com.

Media Contacts: Rob LeVine, General Manager, The Antlers at Vail, (970) 476-2471, RLeVine@antlersvail.com or Darla Worden, WordenGroup Strategic Public Relations, (307) 734-5335, darla@wordenpr.com.

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Vail Jazz festival and FREE Thursday Jazz at Vail Square, 150 yards from the Antlers at Vail

Jazz at Vail Square returns to Lionshead this summer with the first of nine  free shows at Vail Square just 150 yards from the Antlers at Vail hotel in Vail.  Free concert from 6-8pm on Thursdays. Presented in a tented venue  seating 300+, this dynamic concert series features national jazz artists with  styles ranging from Swing to straight ahead, Latin Jazz to the American  Songbook. Whether you enjoy the show from a seat in a nearby restaurant, or  from the front row with a cocktail, Jazz @ Vail Square creates intimate jazz  experiences that you won’t soon forget.  Seating is first come, first served, and the concerts go on under the tent  rain or shine.  Visit Vail Jazz Foundation for more information and a full listing of this summer’s activities.

 

Vail International Dance Festival

The Vail International Dance Festival is now in its 23rd year with dancers from all over the world performing at the outdoor Ford Amphitheater.  2011’s highlights include the worldwide company debut of New York City Ballet Moves, Mark Morris Dance Groups’ 30th Anniversary Celebration, gala events like the International Evenings of Dance, plus the triumphant return of Trey McIntyre Project.  Call 888-920-2787 for tickets or visit vaildance.org.