Music Camp in the Rockies!
We’re off for a long weekend to Grand Lake, Colorado!! This trip finds us spending time with several friends who are participating in a music camp. For the past several years, a good friend of ours from Lincoln has organized a music camp where he shares his love and talent for bluegrass music. Many talented musicians from around the country attend the camps on a regular basis. The roughly two dozen attendees, however, all have roots in Nebraska. Shelley and I are here strictly as observers as neither of us have any talent in performing music other than as foot tapping and hand clapping observers. We also hate to miss out on a good time!
After a roughly nine hour drive from Lincoln to Grand Lake, we’re reminded of one important advantage of living in the Midwest. With minimal effort, it’s easy to get a change of scenery by putting in some windshield time.
This post will not follow the usual format of previous posts. There won’t be a lot of examples or discussion of architecture, great food, or museums filled with noteworthy art. This post will instead be about the pure enjoyment of being in the mountains where activities are generally geared around enjoying nature.
Our first day in Grand Lake focused on settling into our small but comfortable cabin. Bruce, the local moose, soon greeted us. He seemed to be saying “welcome” to the neighborhood! (I wouldn’t get too close, though.)
Once settled in, we set about exploring the lay of this small but active town. Grand Lake isn’t a large metropolis so getting from one end of town to the opposite takes maybe 5 minutes by car or 20 minutes on foot. (I should note that I didn’t really time our walk from one end to the other but I trust that you get my point…Grand Lake is a small town.)
Let the Eating and Fun Begin!
For our first night’s dinning experience, we found a small French restaurant called the Stillwater Grille. It’s broad menu was more than enough to satisfy our appetites. Stillwater Grille is run by a chef with a very interesting past. After a long varied list of restaurants from around the world, he brings a Farm to Table concept with a French accent to the area. The dishes were varied (like local Cedar Red Ruby trout), plentiful (like the Beef Bourguignon ala Julia Child’s recipe) and other authentic French dishes you’re sure to find familiar. French not your favorite? The menu also has several Italian dishes including a pretty good looking wood fired pizza.
After dinner we are treated to a short practice session as a taste of the musical experience yet to come.
Tonight, the stars are shining bright and the mood is festive but the combination of high altitude, a little wine and a 9 hour drive had it’s affect on us. We turned in early to natures music: the sounds of hoot owls and the rustling of some local bears who decided to raid some nearby trash containers (which we found out about the following morning). Otherwise, it is a quiet and slightly chilly night in our little cabin next to the lake.