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Al and I are thrilled that you have found your way to our blog. We hope you enjoy reading our journal and viewing our photographs of the natural wonder of our United States of America. Let's hit the road together!
Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Triple Crown

No, we haven't traveled to Kentucky, yet....however, we did attend the final leg of the Triple Crown Burro Races, here in Buena Vista. Yes, you read that correctly...burro races :-). Pack burro racing was started by some of Colorado's 19th century miners. The miners used burros to carry their equipment through the Rocky Mountains as they searched for elusive gold, silver and other valuable ores. Since the burros were fully loaded with tools and supplies, the miners had to walk beside them, leading them by a rope. There are two separate legends telling how the rise of racing began. The first one is that two miners found a vein of gold in the same location, and raced each other back to town to be the first to stake a claim to the find. Neither could ride their burro as it was fully loaded, so one of the first rules came about (you can't ride your burro in the race.). The second legend is that burro races started in Leadville, as some drunk miners in a local bar devised an easier method of making money than the back-breaking work of mining the ore.

The burro racing season goes from May to September, and comprises five races in five different mountain towns. The "Triple Crown" races are in Fairplay, Leadville, and finishes in Buena Vista. In May of this year, the Colorado legislature designated pack burro racing as a summer heritage sport in Colorado. Here in Buena Vista the weekend is known as "Gold Rush Days", and there are activities all weekend, and there's vendors, games and food booths in the park all weekend. We decided to go up on Sunday to see the start of the burro races, and check out the fair.

If you had told me a few years ago that I'd be crossing the street with a burro, I would not have believed you!

Packed up and waiting

And they're off...some were running full out right from the start...

some had a slower start :-)

All sizes, big and small. It's a fairly rigorous task, as they are running and leading the burros up and over several passes, for a total of eleven miles...and the winner does it in about an hour and a half!

We checked out gold panning at a demonstration...Karina and Jenna came with us for the day

A prospector came over and showed us how to do the panning...it was very interesting, and the girls came up with a few flakes of gold, along with some copper, quartz, aquamarine and carnelian. 

This puppy was tending his owner's booth!

This was pretty cool...a horse and cactus made out of horse shoes!

Now, there were a few things we needed to take care of....Karina and Jenna haven't been to too many carnivals, and had never experienced a few things....one was gold panning, which we took care of already. We started looking for lunch, and selected the booth that had brisket sliders...good, but very spicy BBQ sauce! They also had "mini funnelcakes"...I asked the girls if they wanted some, and they'd  never had funnel cake before. Ok, we have to correct that! I ordered, and then looked in the bag...never had it come in a bag before...and I said to the guy.."these are zeppolis!" he promptly asked me where I was from, and when I said originally New York, he nods his head :-). He said if he labels them zeppolis, no-one out here knows what they are! So he calls them mini funnel cakes. Too funny. Oh, and the girls approved of them!

Next up on the never-done-before list was bungy jumping.....for the girls!
Jenna goes first, and gets hooked up...

starts bouncing...

way up there....!

the flip....

and back!

Karina is next...doesn't get too much power behind her, so she gets a boost...

that gets her up there! No somersaults from her, though.

The last thing on our list before heading home was some dippin' dots ice cream...we do all enjoy our ice cream :-). Then it was back to the campground for a birthday pot-luck for one of our seasonal folks. We do enjoy our potlucks up here :-). 

We're getting closer to the end of our time here, and still so much to do! Next up for your enjoyment will be our day at Great Sand Dunes National Park, and Zapata Falls. Until then, have a great day!

8 comments:

  1. Really cool, Karen. Isn't it funny how a year ago if someone told you that you would be leaving NY to explore the USA, you would have thought that they had lost their mind. Funny how things work out.
    So glad you are enjoying your stay in Colorado. Sure sounds like you guys got to experience lots of great things.... but burro racing? Too funny. Keep those comments coming.
    P.S. How come there isn't a picture of you on the bungy jump??? :-)

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  2. Love your header! Those racers sure didn't look like old prospectors. :)

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  3. WOW that looks like everybody had a fun day..

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  4. What a great day!!! Love your new header photo...where was that taken?!?!

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  5. Sounds like a perfect day! Burro races, on foot, for 11 miles! Who would have thunk??? Glad it was them and not me!

    I love funnel cakes but have never heard of zeppolis. He was right to rename them :)

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  6. Your header is great. I just love burros. Were they enjoying this run or being pulled along by their handlers??
    I Kept looking for that picture of you bungy jumping! :-)

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  7. We stayed in Buena Vista last year at an RV park right on a river. Well kinda on a river. You had to fight thru heavy brush to ge to it. We panned for gold about 5 miles north. And we went over the Pass to Gunnison national Forest and boondocked for 5 days right on the Talor River, just 15 feet from it.
    Nice area of Colorado.

    Sorry to say we did not see any Burro Races. Looks like fun.

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  8. You guys look like you are having a great time. Love the burro racing.

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