Tag Archives: road trip

Thanksgiving Road Trip to Breckenridge

For the second time in her short life, our dirty, tired Subaru Forester made the 1400 mile drive to the mountains in Colorado last week. We decided to drive to our Thanksgiving celebration with Alex’s family in Breckenridge so that we could bring Jackson with us. Last Christmas was so memorable having Aspen with us in the mountain town, so we figured it would be a delight to have Jackson with us this year.

Jackson is certainly a snow dog.

Jackson is certainly a snow dog.

We hit the road bright and early on Monday morning, the week of Thanksgiving. It was a beautiful day for a drive – bright and sunny with picture-perfect mountain views for much of our drive.

Getting started on the long drive.

Getting started on the long drive.

Since we were driving with Jackson we had to make sure he wasn’t going stir crazy in the back of the car. We stopped at two dog parks along the way to let him run around and get tired out. Something clicked with Jackson at the first dog park and he finally started playing fetch! This made it infinitely easier to wear him out for the rest of the drive.

Crossing the Columbia River from Washington into Oregon.

Crossing the Columbia River from Washington into Oregon.

It was our plan to stay the night in Boise, Idaho as a mid-point, but then I received further confirmation that I tend to be directionally challenged when I realized that Boise is not exactly {read: not even close!} halfway between Seattle and Breckenridge. We scrambled in the car and were able to cancel our hotel reservation and book another room in Salt Lake City instead.

Jackson's first time in snow!

Jackson’s first time in snow!

Jackson did not enjoy the hotel we stayed in. He was awake all night long, pacing and panting, sniffing and whining. Needless to say, no one got much sleep!

Beautiful Utah

Beautiful Utah

Tuesday morning came early and we took Jackson to a park in Salt Lake before grabbing some breakfast and getting back on the road.

Such a trooper!

Such a trooper!

Another gorgeous day – it was especially gorgeous because we got to drive next to the Wasatch Mountains and through central Utah and eastern/central Colorado which is spectacularly gorgeous.

Beautiful landscape along I-70.

Beautiful landscape along I-70.

We made great time on Tuesday and arrived in Breckenridge at 4:00. It was still light out so we were able to check out the neighborhood and walk around with Jackson. It sure was nice to get out of the car!

It turns out Jackson loves rolling around in the snow! He was so happy to get out of the car.

It turns out Jackson loves rolling around in the snow! He was so happy to get out of the car.

After a few days in sunny Colorado, it was time to make our way back to Seattle. We woke up early on Sunday, packed up the car and pointed her west. Since we were so close to Vail we decided to take a pit stop and walk through the village on our way out of town. It was so nostalgic being there – Alex and I hadn’t been back to Vail since our wedding in April of 2012.

The Donovan Pavilion - our wedding venue!

The Donovan Pavilion – our wedding venue!

We spent a little too much time walking down memory lane and ended up getting back to the car later than we had hoped. To add to that, I didn’t really pay too much attention to the directions getting back to Salt Lake, so we missed a shortcut that would have cut a half an hour off of our drive. Oops!

So fun to see Vail again!

So fun to see Vail again!

The drive west was much more exciting than it was going east. We encountered extremely thick fog in Utah and a few snowstorms in Oregon and Washington.

Snowy mountain passes.

Snowy mountain passes.

Our stop at In-N-Out burger was nothing close to “in and out” – more like “in and wait 20 minutes.”

Good burgers, sloooowwwww service.

Good burgers, sloooowwwww service.

The same thing happened on Monday for lunch. We chose to eat at a local sandwich shop instead of going to Jimmy Johns across the street and boy did we pay for that decision. Our sandwiches were flavorless and they had forgotten about our order, thus making us wait, and the lemon bar they gave us as an apology was soooooo tart we couldn’t stand to eat it. Go figure.

Jackson was so ready to get out of the car.

Jackson was so ready to get out of the car.

The moment we crossed over the line from Bellevue to Seattle on Monday afternoon, traffic came to a slow. There was a Seahawks game. To add to that, we hit the city limits at the time that schools were getting out for the day so there were 20 MPH slow zones all through the city streets. Finally, blocks away from our house there was a funeral processional that held up traffic for a few minutes. We diverted and went a round about way back home and finally made it to our house around 3:00 p.m. Oye!

Long drive!

Long drive!

It was so nice to be in the mountains and spend Thanksgiving with Alex’s family. It was well worth the 2800 mile round-trip drive to bring Jackson with us. I don’t think we’ll be taking another long road trip like that for a while, though.