Back to School – 6th Grade

By BrandonSchoolLeave a Comment

And with that, summer ends. School begins. But now it is middle school! Lockers, changing classes, electives, and more. Big stuff. We are so excited for Reagan to be moving into this new phase of life after some challenges last year at school.

Back to School

The traditional silly picture.

Back to School

Group version.

Back to School

Avid 4 Adventure Camp

By BrandonAdventuresLeave a Comment

Back to camp! Reagan and Sydney were in the same group this year, along with one of Reagan’s friends from school. They had a great time. The activities were familiar and they loved showing off their skills.

Hey, aren’t you supposed to be in the boat?  Oh, they are learning how to rescue in a canoe.  If you haven’t done that, it’s not easy to do without tipping the boat.

Avid 4 Adventure Camp

Hiking to Royal Arch in Boulder.  They made it to the top.  Most groups apparently don’t.  Not this group!

Avid 4 Adventure Camp

Spy photo of Reagan and her friend, Greta, behind her.

Avid 4 Adventure Camp

Not sure what is going on her.  It would be easier without that blindfold.  But I think it is some sort of trail description exercise.

Avid 4 Adventure Camp

Reagan had a great time, even in the 90 degree heat.  I am sure she will continue going until they age her out.

Leadville Firecracker 5K 2016

By BrandonA Day in the LifeLeave a Comment

Distance 3.11 miles
Time 37:06
Rank 132nd

It was Sydney vs. Reagan vs. Kayla vs. Dad at the annual 5K in Leadville. We were excited to run as a family but that went to hell as soon as the race started. Kayla took off and passed us all. But we caught her within a few blocks and then Sydney took the lead for the remainder of the race.

Leadville Firecracker 5k 2016

Reagan was bopping back and forth between Kayla and I and Sydney. Thinking she might have been able to take the win if she wasn’t running in Jordan high tops. But they finished about 2 seconds apart in a duel to the finish.

Leadville Firecracker 5k 2016

Hoping to keep this a family tradition!

Summer Fun @ Copper Mountain

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We spend a lot of weekends at Copper Mountain skiing in the winter. But it turns out they keep the place pretty busy in the summer too. Festivals and events are happening all the time. But during the weekdays it is nice and quiet and the kids love to go there and play. You can get a “summer season pass” where you can enjoy their activities. Ride the chair lift. Play mini golf. And do some of the stuff shown below. I may even drag my bike over there and have it drop me off up top and ride down.

Copper Mountain

The go karts are the best part.  Hard to find a decent track around here these days.  This one is short but got my juices flowing.  I started in the back and passed all cars.  But one girl was killing me.  Looking over her shoulder and blocking me in the turns.  She was probably 10.  I noticed her whole family cheering her on from the bleachers.  I kept working her and finally took her in traffic to win.

Copper Mountain

Bumper boats are always a good time.  Spraying other people with water in the face.  Kayla got pushed out in to the center of the lake (see below) where the fountain was spraying.  Her boat was going in circles and it was just raining down on her.  She was soaked when she got off the boat.  Still had fun!

Copper Mountain

See Sydney and Reagan to the left of the fountain on the zip line.  More zip fun in Colorado.  This one just runs across the lake.

Copper Mountain

Pretty big rock wall.  About 40′ up.  Quite the challenge for any climber.

Copper Mountain

Bouncing our way through summer! But it will be fun when this place goes back to snow and we ski once again!

Brown’s Canyon

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Sometimes our summer activities are limited by the ages and weights of the children. This activity has been on our todo list for a long time. We pass Brown’s Canyon every time we head to the hot springs and dreamt of the day we can get the kids on the water.

Rafting

The minimum age for class III rapids at about 2200 CFS is 6 years old. Kayla is 6! Off we went. We chose to ride with Noah’s Ark Rafting. They have a great program and the guides are super friendly. We had Tim leading us! We opted for a 1/2 day on Brown’s Canyon which is nearby Leadville. Just a bit south of Buena Vista actually. This areas was moved to National Monument status a few years ago. Very cool terrain. Lucky to have it so close.

Rafting

The water was snow about a day ago so it is pretty chilly. Although the guides are used to it and are not wearing much extra. We rented splash jackets (like rain coats) that helped keep the big sprays off you. Kim took her’s off part way. Your call based on temps.

Rafting

The kids ride rode up front 3 across. Kim and I were in back. Our guide in the middle. These boats have a sweet setup in the middle where the guide has big oars and does most of the maneuvering on the trip. You get involved by stroking with your paddle on his call. Just to help move the boat back or forward.

Rafting

I talked to the guide a bunch to try and understand more about rafting. I was curious about his deal there too. These guides were all from all over the US. They come for the summer and work 6 days a week running 2 trips a day. Fun summer on the water meeting fun folks! I clarified what we could expect on class III with the kids. They didn’t seem to concerned. Class III doesn’t seem to lose people out of the boat. Maybe once a week if someone is joking around. We were in good hands.

Rafting

We rode down the river a few miles before encountering the class III rapids. There were 7 of them. All with names and stories and unique characteristics. The kids got some big air on a few of them. It is daunting when you see that much water in front of the boat.

Rafting

We made it safely! The crew pulls the boats out. You are about 10 miles from the start. Jump on a school bus and they wisk you back to the start. A great time and I would recommend using these guys again!

So I forgot the GoPro at home. Bummer. I tried to film with my iPhone a bit. Just to give my Mom a sense of how I tried to kill her grandchildren this time. I couldn’t do the big rapids because I had to stroke. I captured a few but I have to put the phone down and paddle so it gets weird. Give it a watch anyway. I had the phone in a waterproof bag around my neck. GoPro would have better. Especially on Kayla!

The kids loved it. I hope we go again. There are other class III sections around here. Also some class IV and V too. Sydney is old enough next year for the class IV. And maybe we can get to class V someday. Seems like a worthy bucket list item!