Week 16: Out of Towner’s


Centennial Cone Park

Trail: Juniper Trail to Mayhem Gulch

Miles: 3




My parents were in town for this weekend’s adventure to celebrate little MJ’s first birthday. My dad was a marathoner and ultra runner in his day. The year he retired he walked over 3,000 miles. Walking is in my blood; It is my sanity and go to exercise on most occasions, and I have my father to thank for my active lifestyle. As a teenager, if he could tell I was upset, he would invite me to walk with him. The fresh air and his curiosity about who I was and what I was going through made him a hero to me.

Sharing Colorado with my Californian parents has been a pleasure. Although it is hard to top the natural beauty that I grew up with (the Pacific Ocean), I do my best to show off the mountains, coffee shops, seasons and open spaces of this beautiful state. I don’t think that they’ll ever be convinced to move here, but I do know that they are grateful for the opportunities they have had to explore CO with my family.




At this point in our journey, Joe and I have taken to almost all of Jefferson Country Open Space Areas. One of the few remaining parks was Centennial Cone Park. It is nestled deep into the foothills with gorgeous views of other mountain ranges like Indian Peaks. It took us no more then 30 minutes to get there, and when we did we had to bundle up as the wind was blowing a ferocious, bone chilling breeze. Once we got on the trail the wind died down and we enjoyed a slow, steady pace which was set by AJ. And man oh man does AJ love his grandparents. His happy, enthusiastic energy kicked our tired butts into gear as we navigated the trail.

The trail itself was pretty easy to begin with. As we looped back along the trail toward the parking lot the level of difficulty was moderate as we had to hike up an incline for about half a mile or less. My mom, who is also a regular sea-level-walker, had her most successful CO hike yet! She did amazing job pushing herself through the sometimes mundane motion of placing one foot in front of the other. Exercise hasn’t really ever been her thing, but she’ll push her limits if it means more time with family.

The hike itself was stunning. At one point AJ found a boulder and attempted to climb it. He also collected rocks with grandpa (who is a major rock collector). MJ slept on me in the carrier. Joe was the motivator, as usual; making sure AJ kept up and checked in in on my parents to make sure everyone’s needs were being met.

We ended the adventure with a stop in Idaho Springs. This cute mountain town is charming and unique. We found a deli/coffee shop and all of us really enjoyed our food. We proceeded to take in the charming town by strolling down the main street and taking pictures. Such tourists 🙂 The ride home was quiet and peaceful. I personally felt an inner calm that is only present in the presence of those nearest and dearest to you. What can I say…I love my mom and dad!



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