How to Hike Four Colorado “Fourteeners” in One Shot

Ready to hike one of Colorado’s famed fourteeners (peaks over 14,000 feet above sea level) but unsure where to begin? Allow me to introduce you to the DeCaLiBron, where you can hike not one, but four fourteeners in one shot — all for about the same amount of effort it would take to complete just one.

How to Hike Aspen, Colorado’s Four Pass Loop

I’ve had my eye on the Four Pass Loop near Aspen since I moved to Colorado. It’s frequently on “best of” hiking trails lists for the state, and I’ve even seen mention of it being one of the best hiking trails in the world. With all this hype and all the hiking I’ve done, you might think I’d end up disappointed. Not so! I was, in fact, totally blown away by this 28-mile(ish) trail. It was nothing short of amazing. Here is how you can plan your own backpacking trip out to the Maroon Bells Wilderness.

Welcome (Back) to the Jungle

Friends, I feel it’s only fair to warn you in advance: this (extra-long) post will probably make you want to immediately shell out your hard-earned money for a one-way ticket to Southeast Asia. And I wouldn’t be able to blame you one bit if you did! I spent the last two weeks in Thailand gettingContinue reading “Welcome (Back) to the Jungle”

Mountains and Tall Trees and Bear Tracks, Oh My!

The Payne family is an outdoorsy people. I grew up in the country, in a house with a giant yard surrounded by woods, reading Ranger Rick magazine. I couldn’t see our nearest neighbor’s houses through the trees and there were no sidewalks for miles. My favorite hiking spot was (and probably still is) directly behindContinue reading “Mountains and Tall Trees and Bear Tracks, Oh My!”

The Wild, Wild West

I realize I’ve gotten quite far behind in my blogging. And so many exciting things have happened in the past few weeks that I should have been writing about! But alas, life has gotten in the way. I’ve been too busy living life to write about it! But here I am, back at it onceContinue reading “The Wild, Wild West”

Is Winter Over Yet?

Hello hello my beautiful readers! I hope you have been surviving winter. I have finally, at the beginning of March, begun to get the winter blues. My energy seems to have left me, I have started requiring more sleep, holing up watching more TV than usual, requiring copious amounts of caffeine to get me throughContinue reading “Is Winter Over Yet?”

Reflections (Someone is feeling mighty cheerful today)

I have noticed as of late that I have somehow, slowly and inconspicuously, managed to find my own life again, without Rich’s presence. Most days, I don’t even think about him anymore. I have found that I have much more pep in my step, optimism about the future and, in general, a very real feelingContinue reading “Reflections (Someone is feeling mighty cheerful today)”

Vicious Goats and World Famous Coffee: A Weekend in Seattle

Sometimes the best way to get out of your own head is to get out of town. To get out of my own cluttered head, I took a bit of a hiatus from normal life and spent last weekend on the West Coast, sometimes known as the best coast. My friend Andrew, who I met whileContinue reading “Vicious Goats and World Famous Coffee: A Weekend in Seattle”