I wasn’t well-traveled until I reached my twenties. The first time I ever flew in an airplane was when I was eighteen and I was petrified. I went to California to attend a family wedding and after that trip, I pretty much wanted to go everywhere. I couldn’t believe that up until that point, I had never seen the other side of the country, let alone the whole planet.
Growing up, my family didn’t go on too many vacations. We weren’t as financially well-off as some of my friends. I had never even gone to Disney World as a child. Most of the memories I have were based in New Jersey, where I was born and raised, so it was a real treat whenever I did get to go anywhere outside of the Tri-state area.
I got into snowboarding when I was a teenager. My sister convinced me to try it and I ended up loving it — I still snowboard to this day. However, the closest mountains to where I lived were always too overcrowded in the Winter. They weren’t nearly vast nor wide enough to hold all of the skiers and snowboarders coming from New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania or further.
I’ve always wanted to go to the mountains out west.
The first time that I ever visited Colorado was when I was 20 years old. I went to Boulder for a few days and the first thing that I got to see were the Flatirons. It was a sight that nearly took my breath away — It didn’t even look real. It looked like a canvas painting had been hung up as a backdrop in the sky. It was nothing compared to what I knew of back East. It was love at first sight. And I wasn’t even there for snowboarding. It was summertime.
Afew years later, two of my good friends got married and moved to Colorado. I was so jealous, but at the same time also excited to have a reason to go back and visit. In their short time of living there, I visited them twice.
The first time I visited them, I not only got to return to the Flatirons, but I also hiked it at about 7,000 feet in elevation during the Winter. It was even more incredible than…