Valentine’s Day has just passed, so I started thinking about some of my most romantic getaways, and the first thing to pop into my mind was our weekend in Estes Park Colorado! Now, what is not to love about Estes Park? It’s a gorgeous, sleepy, little town, in the midst of the Colorado Rockies! The town was founded in 1859, and has a total population of 5858 People! Estes Park sits on the eastern edge of the Rocky Mountain National Park, and the Big Thompson River runs right through the middle! Many locals call it the gateway to the Rockies!
Gold was discovered in the Colorado Mountains in 1859, and one of the men who rushed into Colorado was Joel Estes. The word park, at that time, was a term used for wide open spaces ~ thus the town was founded, and named Estes Park!
The Colorado Mountain’s were once known as the place to go for dry air ~ and was a stanley steamerdiagnosis of sorts for people who had Tuberculosis. The most famous Tuberculosis patient who came to Colorado was F.O. Stanley. F.O. Stanley invented the Stanley Steam car, among other things. He moved to Denver after being diagnosed, and was eventually pointed toward Estes Park, but the Denver locals! He bought property there and built a 5240 Sq Ft. “cottage” for his family to use in the summer. It still stands today, and you can drive by ~ the address is ~slide_14189_195491_largeWonderview Avenue (Hwy 34 bypass) just west of BigHorn Drive. It is privately owned as was last listed for sale in 2010 for 2.4 Million! Stanley also made many contributions to Estes Park, including building the first waste water treatment plant ~ but his most famous contribution is The Stanley Hotel!
I am a Native Colorado Girl, so trust me when I say ~ you don’t want to miss this gorgeous town! This sleepy little town’s claim to fame is the book (and later the Stanley Hotel) The Shining, by Stephen King! Stephen King was in Estes Park, and stayed at the Stanley Hotel. While staying there, he had some interesting experiences, and heard all the ghost stories from the locals! His inspiration for his book came from the haunted stories that have surrounded the hotel for ages! Here is what Stephen King says about his stay at the Stanley Hotel ~
The Shining ~ via Stephen King
Inspiration: in late September of 1974, Tabby and I spent a night at a grand old hotel in Estes Park, the Stanley. We were the only guests as it turned out; the following day they were going to close the place down for the winter. Wandering through its corridors, I thought that it seemed the perfect—maybe the archetypical—setting for a ghost story. That night I dreamed of my three-year-old son running through the corridors, looking back over his shoulder, eyes wide, screaming. He was being chased by a fire-hose.
Many of the people who work there, and the locals, belive that he original owners, Mr and Mrs. Stanley, are still living and working in the hotel. There have been many reported sighting of them, and they can often be seen and heard walking through the hotel at night! There was an explosion in the hotel, injuring a housekeeper, and since her death is said to still do housekeeping duties in the room where the explosion happened. Often people who stay in Room 217 (where the explosion happened) have reported having their clothes unpacked, towels picked up, beds turned down, and ghostly visitors at night! Many guests have complained of loud children stanley_hotel_ghost_photolaughing, and running through the halls at night ~ even though there are no children checked into the hotel. Cool Right! Since my husband had never read the book, seen the movie, or ever been to Estes Park, I decided that we had to go and spend the Weekend! Not only for the spooky, but for the romance and beauty of Estes Park, and The Stanley Hotel!
The town of Estes Park, is only 1 1/2 hours from the capital city of Denver. The drive up the I70 highway is breathtaking. Mountains reaching towards the 2013-08-08-independencepasscolorado280blue sky! Groves of Pine trees that you can smell, and hear whispering in the wind! For the most part the Highway is at least 2 lanes and the roads are very well maintained.
We made it to town in easy time, checked in, and were shown to our condo ~ Check out the Hotel it is Amazing! The grand staircase in the middle really is breathtaking when you walk in! The atmosphere is very welcoming and friendly! We were excited to be there!
Please Read the rest of our Estes Park Weekend Here www.basketslife.wordpress.com