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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Denver, Colorado

 What is more fun than to combine a little bit of a National Park with a Capital City. 
Well, that is exactly what we did on this trip.  After leaving the National Parks and Boulder, we kept heading south.  The drive from Boulder to Denver is only about 35 minutes. This is extremely convenient when you are trying to see as much of Colorado as you can in one weekend.

Driving into Denver, Colorado 

Driving into Denver, we were greeted with blue skies for a few hours.  Blue skies and sky scrapers was the name of the game when entering the city of Denver.

  The city was much bigger, cleaner, and prettier than I thought.  Whenever I hear "city"  I always picture New York.  Over populated insanely dirty, full of rude busy people trying to get somewhere fast (sorry New Yorkers, it just isn't my scene).  

I think this is why I knew I would like Salt Lake City.  It is none of that.  Denver wins the award too.   I was pleasantly surprised when I parked the car and walked around this beautiful city.  

Beautiful Bridges in Denver, Colorado 

The bridges and the river flowing through the city were my favorite.  I am totally falling in love with urban rivers (is that weird?).  Maybe its my longing for water in a land locked state, and living in a city for the first time ever, but I love to see the clash of river and city and everyone out and about enjoying a little scenic river flowing through their city.

  Colorado's urban river is called the Platte River and it was flowing a little high with all of the rain.  I am sure it is a lovely place to walk your dog in the summer and enjoy a little slice of water and the outdoors.  And the bridges.  Oh the bridges.  Maybe I love the bridges as much as I love these urban rivers.  Each one was so beautiful and different, and really had the edgy modern city vibe to it.  Whoever designed Denver, you need to come to Salt Lake City and make a few improvements. 

Platte River, Denver, Colorado 

One of the improvements that could be made to Salt Lake City is all of the dog friendly options.  I googled Denver Dog Park and was overwhelmed by the options.  We stopped at the Rail Yard Dog Park, a little sandy dog park bordering the railroad tracks in downtown Denver.  They had two separate areas for large and small dogs, tables, shade, and water.  And there were a ton of dogs coming and going from the park and I can see why it was so popular.

Denver Beer Co., Denver, Colorado 

If you don't want to bring your dog to the dog park, don't worry, you can bring it to the bar with you.  Yes you heard me right.  Denver has quite a few spots with dog friendly patios., some bars even having their own dog park area.  Say what?!?  Full List Here

We decided on Denver Beer Co. and instantly fell in love with this place.  Beer on tap higher than 4% (weird SLC thing), most of the beer for $5 (YES!), and absolutely delicious.  Not only are dogs allowed on the patio, but they are even allowed in the bar.  
Beer and Dogs and Sunshine-  The Best Saturday.

Olive and her new rescue puppy friend, Denver Beer Co., Denver, Colorado 

Denver Beer Co. was a fun spot with great beer full of 20 and 30 somethings, and a ton of dogs.  If I lived in Denver, Olive and I would spend a lot of time on this patio sipping beer socializing with some other 2 and 4 legged friends.  Salt Lake City is only allowed to "make alcohol available, not advertise it".  We also don't have many spaces with outdoor patios and the city isn't that dog friendly.

After a beer at the Denver Beer Co., and some fries off the food truck that parks in front of it (I know, it's awesome), we met our friend Jen from home for dinner.  It is always fun to see old friends in new friends and she picked out an awesome spot for dinner, The Ale House at Amato's in downtown Denver.  Great beer selection, awesome food for a great price.  They were even really sweet about having Olive tied outside and brought her under the canopy when the rain started.  Two thumbs up.

After saying bye to Jen, we headed 20 minutes south to a small town called Centennial to visit more friends from home.  This is where our newlywed friends Zach and Michelle live in an adorable little house.  They offered to let us stay over after the continuous rain ruined all of our camping plans.  There is something so homey about seeing childhood friends in a new setting and I was so thankful for their kindness.  I am not sure what is worst than camping in non stop muddy pouring rain. 

Cherry Creek State Park, Aurora, Colorado

The next morning, we had a few crazy dogs in the house, cooped up with the rain, so Michelle and Zach suggested an awesome dog park to let out some energy and stretch out legs.  

Cherry Creek State Park  has an amazing Off Leash Dog Area.  Just a short drive from their house, we arrived at the park to see a TON of other dogs already there.  The park is open seven days a week, 5:00 am-10:00 pm. The Cost: State Park Entrance Fee: $9; Dog Park Entrance Fee: $2
This spot was truly awesome as it was over 100 acres to roam off-leash, with a creek running through the open space for dogs to play in and drink. 

Cherry Creek State Park, Aurora, Colorado

Olive and Riley loved the park and it was the perfect time to wear out Olive before we had another long day in the car.  A fenced in dog park of this size is an amazing find.  Denver, you are lucky! 

Cherry Creek State Park, Aurora, Colorado

After the park, we bid farewell to the Yates and started to head West for our long drive back to Utah with more sights to see along the way.  

Denver, you are for the dogs!  You really surprised me with your clean city, beautiful bridges, friendly people and amazing dog friendly vibe.  It was a short love affair, but you really impressed me.  

I know I spent a few (a lot) of sentences ragging on Salt Lake City, but while Salt Lake City has its drawbacks, I have to say I still like it a little more (we are pretty spoiled being so close to the ski mountains and hiking and biking trails.  It is also a little smaller and approachable for a non city girl like myself).
  And lets be honest, if I move anywhere any time soon, there has to be an ocean.  

But Denver, you sure know how to make a girl and her dog smile.  
 I will be back! 


  1. love both of these places!!


    1. Denver is wonderful! But Salt Lake City is still better ;)

  2. One of my closest friends was born there! (as in Colorado) beautiful shots! It's definitely yet again another place in the US I have to visit

    XO Naomi in Wonderland

  3. Can't wait for your guy's next visit to Denver!! You've always got a place to stay with us!

  4. Everything looks pretty damn awesome!!Thanks for sharing..furnace

    1. Such a gorgeous area- I was surprised how much I loved beautiful Denver! And so dog friendly :)


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