Have you heard about the great woolly mammoth discovery in Snowmass, Colorado? Well. We happened to visit during Ice Age Days (featuring such fun events as “sloth races! costumes (and presumably, irony) provided!”) While you couldn’t visit the site where archaelogists were digging up ancient buffalo, mammoths and other animals — you could take a 2 mile switchback hike up a nearby mountain and “peer over the edge into the excavation site.”
One of my many nerdy loves? Dinosaurs. I love them. I always have, but especially since reading Jurassic Park in early high school. Visiting Sue a few years ago was certainly a highlight. And now? Hiking up to see an excavation site? HOLY DINO BONES. I couldn’t wait.
Poor Charlie, a wee bit hungover from far too good of a time the night before with his wife and their friends Lyle Lovett and Lance Armstrong (long story), wasn’t too keen to keep his promise made the day before to do the dino hike with me. Alas, I wasn’t letting him off the hook. In fact, I was more determined to help him work off his haze and chirped along the trail until I am pretty sure he sped up to make me winded and quiet. It worked temporarily.
While the path was lined with fields of flowers and truly amazing views, the top was strange. This is the first hike I’ve ever done where the summit included a marble ying yang sign. Like a helipad, but too small for such things. Someone thought it made sense to create a marble, tiled circle on top of this little mountain. But never mind this strange pattern that greeted our summit. Where were the dinos? Wait. What? The construction equipment way over there? Those are the dinos? But you can’t see anything! We’d been duped!
It was hard to be too angry considering how gorgeous the hike was. Plus, the few pieces of pipe I could see in the excavation site quickly became mammoth vertebrae. By the time we got to the bottom of the mountain, I’d spun an entire tale of what the archieologists were looking for and what they’d found. Poor Charlie, I’m fairly certain, wanted to kill me and the barista who’d provided an extra shot of espresso pre-hike.
To which he only said, “I don’t think mammoths are dinos anyway.”
After a debate whether the Flintstones had woolly mammoths or not — and whether “actual people” lived with these animals — we agreed to disagree. It was a dino hike, whether we saw actual bones or not.