Hiking Ute Trail and a Long Day at Commonwheel Gallery in Manitou Springs

Woke up feeling a bit achy the Monday morning.

After yesterday’s gardening adventure, the muscles in my upper legs and butt were a bit sore. Though not too painful, just a good reminder that I need to exercise is ways other than hiking to keep all parts of my body in better shape.

I worked on the Commonwheel Artists Art Festival correspondences, including the Beer Garden Contract. It looks much better, more equitable for both parties. So now just need to meet to finalize it unless another objection pops up from a Festival committee member or the Board.

Backing up a couple of Fridays ago. Manitou Springs has a very fun kid oriented parade. It is a Lantern Parade and it takes place at night and on the sidewalk from Soda Springs Park to Mansions Park. I had planned on going to StarGazers and the parade started a bit late. So I didn’t get photos of the participants at the end, just the beginning.

Lantern Parade in Manitou Springs

These people walked very fast and bunched up too much for good photos, so I am sorry I didn’t go down to the end and take more pictures. I did drive by, but the parking area was very full, so I just went on to StarGazers and dancing.

The man with the street cone horn is Steve Wood and was the instigator of this idea about 4 years ago. It has grown much larger since that first Lantern Parade in Manitou Springs.

I connected with my hiking partner on Monday, and we agreed to meet for a hike in Ute Valley Park on Tuesday at 11 am. It was predicted to be the nicest day of the week and I really couldn’t go any other day, so that sounded perfect.

I went down to Swirl to meet up with people doing the Creative District tour about 4pm. The members of the tour had to leave early, but I did get to meet one of them. A couple of the tour guides and another gallery owner was there, so we had a drink and talked about upcoming art happenings and that the tour went well according to one of the guides.

I had planned on eating there, but everyone left before anyone wanted to order food, so home I went, fixed dinner, then caught up with some personal computer emails. And I think I got to bed early that night so I could be rested in the morning for the hike. And my butt did hurt, so deserved another good night healing sleep.

I met my hiking partner at a location that neither of us wanted to leave our car, so we both drove to the Ute Valley Park Trailhead. I had never seen that parking totally full, even on a weekend, but it was this day. Luckily we saw that a couple of people were finishing their hike or bike trip, so we waited for them to get in their cars and leave so we could park there.

The park is a bit dry and rocky. It had some magnificent views of Pikes Peak. And I am trying to find a very iconic view of how we interact with Pikes Peak to enter in a gallery show. The photo below is more about a view one of the trails we could hike rather than Pikes Peak and the Waldo Canyon burn scar that can be seen in the distance.

Ute Valley Park Trails in Colorado Springs

It was a lovely day, not to hot or windy. My hiking partner was feeling a bit tired this day. Whereas I was happy that the Essential Oils and a good night sleep had helped my aching butt muscles feel much better this morning and they were not a hindrance to my enjoying the day. But we didn’t hike as many trails here as we could if she had not felt tired.

Pikes Peak & Rocks at Ute Valley Park in Colorado

Still it was a lovely hike in this rather urban park. Way more mountain bikers passed us on the trail than one would have expected on a week day. Knowing that some other trails in the area have been closed since last year’s flooding, I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised.

I got some fun pictures of a few birds that posed for me in one area. I attempted to place Pikes Peak on a table (rock) at one point on the trail. Once again I wished for bluer sky when taking this photograph, but that wasn’t in the cards today. I might of even gone back when the sky cleared a bit later in the hike, but my hiking partner probably would not have agreed to retracing our steps.

After the hike I went to Costco and did a bit more grocery shopping to add some more fruits and veggies to my food options at home. I have really gotten into the Costco roasted chickens as a fast protein base of many different types of meals. But wanted some other veggies to add some variety to those meals.

Wednesday I worked all day at Commonwheel Artists Co-op. Not many people came into the gallery, but some were really fun to chat with and get them really looking at the art work in the “Old Spokes” show and other members’ work.

Art Work at Commonwheel Aritsts "Old Spokes" Gallery show

Quite a few people got into conversations about the strange creature made from recycled materials. That allowed me to talk with them about the concept behind the gallery show and Commonwheel’s 40 years of history of bringing local artists in to display and sell in the Pikes Peak Region.

Hard to make sales without people in the gallery to sell to . . . A couple did measure some work of one artist to see how it would fit in a space at their home, so that was promising. And I did sell one of my FantaFaces feather pendants, which made my day a bit better.

After I closed the Gallery to the public, there was a meeting to discuss changes some members wanted to see to the whole space or how they wanted the Coop to look in many ways. It was a somewhat heated discussion at times. There wasn’t really a feeling of compromise nor was any change actually agreed to during this discussion.

I went home really tired and was glad I had an easy quick meal to fix and eat. Then headed to bed early.

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