(the pink socks belong to my niece, India)
March in Aspen is delivering the usual tease of beautiful spring-like weather, mixed with mid winter-like storms, but that is okay by me. Although I welcome the warm temperatures, I am not yet ready to put the skis away.
To capitalize on the warm weather, I took the kids to Glenwood Springs, the Banana Belt of the Roaring Fork Valley, and we visited the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park.
On our way on the tram up Iron Mountain, I took the opportunity to warn them that they would not be making their own gigantic pixie stick this time. I recognized the appeal for them to gleefully choose their own colors to pour into an enormous plastic straw but I also knew that watching them slowly drip into mental illness, with every shake of sugar into their mouths, was something I should avoid at all cost.
The boys were very disappointed that Demon the mechanical bull, the swing shot and the 4-dimensial theater were closed for the off-season, but we were all very excited to experience the new addition of laser tag.
We walked into the room to put on our vests and get familiar with our laser guns and Tucker began to whimper. I was overly pumped up to finally play this game and would have none of it.
I checked in with the attendant, as I always do, to make sure that there would be an escape route if needed. I was very thankful when the nice young man gently coaxed Tucker into joining us and even let us do a trial run before charging us, which was a good thing because I played the entire first game with the laser gun pointed backwards at myself, all the while wondering why it wasn’t working. Sometimes I really question my intelligence level.
Laser tag was far more fun than I had ever imagined with mother’s tagging their sons, kids tagging their grandparents and Brevitt and I repeatedly crashing into each other in a wild frenzy to win. We spent the entire day in that room laughing, screaming and tagging each other.
Every now and then, Tucker and I would take a break and sled down the Canyon Flyer, an alpine coaster where you can go as fast as you dare. By the last ride Tucker was screaming with joy, pushing me to go full tilt and I was praying for the sled to stay on the track as we careened around the corners.
The last time we were at The Caverns Axel and his cousin, India, rode the Swing Shot. Even though India’s eyes were tightly shut, I was amazed at how brave they were as the swing pulled them back, ready to catapult them 1,300 feet above the Colorado River. If truth be known, I was slightly relieved that I wasn’t going to have to watch them do it again this time.
We also took the 70 minute Cave Tour the last time we were there. The tour has been ranked in the top 10 by USA Today, and I also highly recommend it. The guide worked well with the children, opening their imaginations to the wonders of the historic fairy caves dating back about five million years. We twisted and turned until we ended in a magnificent cavern with stalactites and stalagmites.
What is not very advertised, and something that I must enlist Wade to with the boys one day, is to take the Wild Tour of the Caverns. A three and a half hour, on-your-belly tour of the caverns, taking you off the beaten path to reach greater depths into the mysterious caves.
We are going to have to return in the summer to dig for mining treasures and experience the Alpine Rush, a zip line that takes you on a thrill ride 650 feet downhill, over the tree tops, at speeds up to 50 miles per hour.
As we stood in our shorts waiting for the tram to take us down, I prepared myself for tomorrow’s adventures that I had no doubt, judging from the ominous clouds hovering over the incredible Southern View, would take place back on the slopes.
Be sure to visit The Caverns website for their hours, prices and to find out what is open. I found that the most economical way to enjoy the park is to either buy a day pass for $39 or to purchase the Annual Thrill Pass for $100.