September 15, 2014

St. Louis: BBQ and Gateways

Kansas was filled with corn fields and more corn fields. Therefore, I do not have many photos of Kansas. However, there was this gorgeous sunrise above Home Depot that I snapped from our motel window.

We left bright and early that morning to make it to Michigan before the end of the night. As a friend of mine is from Kansas, I asked him about cool places to go and things to see in the state. He suggested that we go to Okahoma Joe's in Kansas City.

Unfortunately, our timing was off and we got there two hours before it we were off to St. Louis with our bellies a little empty.

And boy, did St. Louis not disappoint.

Barbecue seems to be one of those things where people swear by a joint. This place versus that place, pick a team and swear your loyalty to House Barbecue. After some intense Internet searching, and the fact that my family has been here once without me, we settled on Bogart's Smokehouse

My beautiful momma.

I'll also have you know that I was drooling while editing these photos. I had the brisket, Dad the pulled pork, while Mom and Brother had the ribs. We all ordered beans, cole slaw, and potato salad.

Ha! Brother was getting his hair out of his face..he'll probably hate me for this one.

The ribs...oh, the ribs. Fall-off-the-bone delicious. And the pulled pork was everything you could've asked for. But you can't get me started on the brisket -- being the weird nut that I am, I love the taste of meat by itself and this....perfect. Give me another plateful, please!

My favorites were Voodoo and Sweet Maegan Ann.

If you go, I highly suggest getting the brisket. The ribs and pulled pork were fantastic, but that brisket. Bliss. Don't forget the sides! They're almost as important, if not just as. And say hello to the staff! They're wondrously nice, and checked in us a few times throughout the meal. Found out one of them is a California native! We commiserated with each other about the intense humidity in St. Louis.

But afterwards, we were in need of some movement. The idea of sitting idle in a car for another long haul seemed almost unbearable.

As we were in St. Louis, we decided to check out the Gateway Arch.

They put you in the tiniest elevator to get to the top...

Where there's a stretch with windows along the side so you can see the view.

Hellooooooo St. Louis!

But we had to leave St. Louis soon thereafter if we were going to make it to Michigan in time...

Also, if you missed it in my last post, I made a video/vlog of my trip. Check it out and let me know what you think? 

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September 8, 2014

Welcome to Colorful Colorado.

Last I wrote, I was on my way to Colorado after exploring Utah. Now, Colorado is one of those places that I could visit for years on end and always discover something new. It's insanely beautiful and the few times I have been there have been lovely.

We zipped from Utah to Gunnison, CO. Black Canyon, to be more specific. 

My, was it a beauty. 

So graceful, I know.

As it was getting dark (we had been driving all day, after all!) and rain was coming in bouts, we couldn't stay for very long. I still think we got quite the view and had some ahh-worthy moments!

Appropriately kept over a trash can.

After whetting our appetite with the first stop, we drove over to Tomichi Point. It. Was. Amazing.

My heart was pounding, my legs trembling. We stood at the very edge of that cliff on rocks that felt as though they could crumble at our very feet. It looked like an attachment that was easily removable. And the temporariness of being there made our adrenaline rush even more.

As soon as we had a couple of shots, I jumped off and ran with my dad back up the hill to where our car was parked.

Such a Daddy's girl.

Then, suddenly, it began to rain. A downpour of epic proportions drenching us in cold, cold sheets. We rushed off to one last spot before making the drive to our motel (we stayed at The Western Motel, which was actually really nice! Definitely a ski town, that's for sure).

As soon as we got out of there, the rain stopped and we got the prettiest sunset by the lake.

After a good night's sleep, we woke up early the next day to begin the long drive ahead of us. 

Starving, we stopped in Cañon City at a nice little place called Cañon Coffee Cafe. Their Yelp score isn't the most promising, but we had ourselves a grand time. I had a delicious smoothie and eggs benedict; dad had the pulled pork, which he thought was delightful; mom had a breakfast burrito; brother had chicken fried steak -- now that was a work of art. Crispy, juicy, nom-worthy.

Stuffed, the drive continued on to the Royal Gorge Bridge. Little did we know that the bridge had been damaged due to wildfires the year before, and would be re-opening to the public later...a week later, to be exact. 

Talk about bad timing.

A little bit defeated, we drove off towards Kansas and lightning storms, where I had some amazing barbecue. But that's for next time.

Also, if you're interested, I made a bit of a video/vlog while I was on the trip. You can read the description box for more info, but please do check it out! And let me know what you think?

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