The perfect winter day near Denver: Sledding Meyers Ranch Park + Country Road Cafe

Have I mentioned how much I love winter and snow? Jamie summarized it best when he said I have a temperate zone of about two degrees and I’m either too hot or too cold…until it’s a chilly 20 degrees F and I’m just right.

On Saturday, we invited our neighbors the Morgans to come play with us in the foothills near Denver. We’ve adored this family since our neighborhood was built 12 years ago but they are always crazy busy–if they’re not working, they’re working harder on extraordinary renovations in their home (it’s Meredith who does the over-the-top outdoor movie nights in the summer).

So we decided it was high-time to relieve them of their overachieving ways and come play. One upon a time, we got into a battle about who had the best breakfast place. We raved about our beloved Country Road Cafe while they boasted McCoys had the best eats in Denver. Eight years ago, we visited McCoys with them (very, very good) and we finally did Country Road Cafe last weekend.

Since Colorado had a glorious dump of snow over Thanksgiving, we decided to hit the hills…the sledding hills to be exact. Meyer Ranch Park in Conifer (about 20 minutes from Denver) has an awesome sledding hill but when we stepped out of the car, we wondered “is it steep enough?” Believe me, when the powder has been compacted, careening down is plenty fast enough.

The kids all had a blast…well, with the exception of 5-year-old Evan who wiped out on the first run and never fully recovered. The rest of us more than made up for him.

Meredith warmed us up with the most delicious hot chocolate as we settled into our cozy outdoor seating.

Hadley soaking it all in. I have an identical picture of her sipping a pina colada poolside at The Broadmoor.

The girls adventured in the forest.

While my little (snow) angel beckoned me, “Mom, you’ve got to lay down beside me and see this.”

The dark green pine forest and pristine white snow field lured me in as I snuggled up to that boy, marveling at the huge frozen bulbs clinging to branches like wasps’ nests against a bluebird sky.

God is an amazing artist.

I somehow convinced Meredith it was a good ideas for us to sled together. With her in front, we barrelled down that hill, laughing ’til we cried as we soared over bumps, her leg got stuck under the sled and a spray of snow gave us a face-freeze near the bottom.

We were such ridiculous fools that we ordered The Husbands to do the same and I wish I’d video taped their run because it was about the funniest thing I’ve ever seen as Andy claimed they set a landspeed record. That wasn’t too far from the truth!

From there, it was onto Kittredge where we played near Bear Creek.

Meredith had an impressive run on the slide at Kittredge Park.

While Hadley was equally as impressive (getting stuck) on the tire swing.

Of course, the climax of the whole day was introducing Meredith and Andy to Country Road Cafe where we devoured fresh cinnamon rolls, fluffy oversized pancakes, breakfast burritos, pumpkin cheesecake-stuffed French toast and the Timber Ridge Tamale Benedict–Two pork filled tamales topped with two eggs, cheddar-jack cheese, green chili, avocado, salsa and sour cream drizzle.

Suffice it to say, our overworked friends are now converts to the playing way of life.

Other Posts