“Sanitas,” in Latin, means “health.” Mt Sanitas was originally a quarry owned and operated by the University of Colorado, but was bought by the city in the early 1900s in order for the beautiful mountain to be preserved and protected for future generations.
As I’m sure I’ve mentioned before, it has been bothering me that I spend so much of my time at work or at home, exhausted from work. I see the mountains every day and breathe the mountain air, yet I deeply yearn to be among the pine and boulders.
As I feel the time here waning I grow more and more motivated to do. It’s a skill, I’ve learned, to simply move in the direction of what I want. Yesterday, I woke up, made a hearty breakfast for David and myself of eggs and refried beans with melted soy cheese on top, and prepared for a hike. I didn’t know where we would go, but I knew how to accomplish the hard part — getting into the car and driving toward the mountains.
Around noon we piled into the car (Lacey included) and headed up Canyon toward the range. I had my Alltrails app open and saw that I had looked up Mt Sanitas earlier and yet had never attempted it; using this as a push of fate, I asked David to take us to the trailhead.
We found Centennial Trailhead but it took us a few minutes to find the actual trail; once we did, it felt simply right. It was the hottest part of the day, around 1 o’clock, so we sunscreened up in a little picnic area at the beginning of the Mt Sanitas Trail. OH a really cool thing we bought: we had a $20 certificate at REI, so we ended up purchasing a Camelbak water bladder (without the Camelbak backpack) and hanging it in one of our backpacks… it’s an awesome hiker hack I’d totally recommend!!!!
So we hiked onward and upward. Lacey was the one who kept stopping, finding shade and refusing the move. David and I ended up finding a cool spot to paint; the paintings ended up like blobs of color but we had a wonderful conversation with a few hikers as we painted, so all is well in the world.
We found a camouflaged bag at one of the places we stopped; it was similar to a geocache but inside was a notebook, a stamp and an ink pad. It was a letter repository. We wrote a letter and left it as we found it.
We finally made it to the summit after a few hours of hiking and stopping, hiking and stopping. We looked over the entire city of Boulder and could even see Denver, with its huge office buildings all crowded into a penny-sized speck on the horizon.
The walk down was a million times cooler. We took our time, lazily making our way through the switch-backs and toward the city. We found the Mt Sanitas Eagle painted on a particularly large boulder, and David found pokemon along the path. It was more and more peaceful.
When we arrived home we rested until the sunset. As the sun just began to set I felt that we should witness it, so we jumped in the car again and drove all the way up Flagstaff Mountain, catching the last wisps of peach and fire in the sky and watching the blues and purples seep into the mountains. We saw lightning approaching, the storm clouds growing larger. We found ourselves watching the world change.