In Search of Simple Pleasures – A Photo Essay

When you live in Colorado, you don’t have to go far to find pleasure in the beauty that surrounds us.

Simple pleasures can be as easy as taking a walk. Last Saturday, my husband Danny and I hit the Mt. Royal Trail in Frisco. It is an intermediate hike that winds through Masontown which was destroyed in 1926 by an avalanche. Now it is a ghost town. The forest had been primarily evergreen, but aspen grew in its wake.

This steady climb was like stepping up stadium stairs. As we gained elevation, I imagined a new bride on the back of a burro mumbling, “How much further is it Charlie?” as she regretted her quick decision to marry a miner.

I took these photos with my Droid cell phone. Click on each photo to enlarge.

White aspen trunks stood like haunting ghosts along the path. Aspens have darker trunks in lower elevations where they tend to be stressed out.

Signs of fall.

A view back at Frisco and Lake Dillon after a quick rise in elevation.

I spied a fancy-like boulder wearing a wreath. Perfect for a little fairy dance!

A few poisonous mushrooms dotted the forest floor.

 I loved these Dr. Seuss flowers with mop tops!

Even after almost 25 years, Danny is still full of surprises! He packed cheese and crackers too. This was truly a simple pleasure.

We plan to come back when the aspens are in their full autumn splendor.

Like a metaphor for life, the path back included a few twists and turns.

What a wonderful hike full of life’s simple pleasures.

This coming Thursday, August 30th will be another Use Me and Abuse Me Day! Come back and post a link to your blog, book, or video in my comment section. Make some new friends by clicking on other links and saying hello!

Where do you find simple pleasure?

94 thoughts on “In Search of Simple Pleasures – A Photo Essay

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  1. “as she regretted her quick decision to marry a miner” Funny, Susie!! Thanks for the laugh and the look at some beautiful pics.


    1. Thanks Coleen!
      I could just imagine since it was such a climb. A whole town wiped out by avalanche is massive!
      It is amazing where some of these settlements were. Many sprung up because of mining.


    1. Thanks for taking a break from work to stop by Kassandra!
      I learned that since women’s bodies are built like an upside down triangle, we are susceptible to injury. I am still in physical therapy and hope to build up enough muscle around my knees, so I have a pain-free ski season! I have lots of work ahead of me…
      Thanks again!


  2. Oh my. We’ve just returned to London (we’re American expats) from an extended visit to Boulder and, believe it or not, the Dillon/Silverthorne/Frisco area (I think we’re in the background of one of your pics, lol!). We left our oldest at CU-Boulder, and you can imagine how your photos and your thoughts on the simple pleasures hit home with me. London is lovely, but my heart is still in those mountains. I just happened upon your blog from one of your comments on another… but I will be back, wild-riding vicariously! Thanks!


    1. Wow! It is a very small world! I am so glad that you found me. I do write about the area quite often.
      I am originally from Wisconsin, but have lived here for nearly 25 years and love the mountains too! There is something about the majestic nature of this place that will always keep my rooted.
      Thanks so much! Go Buffs!
      BTW- My daughter attends CU and loves it!


  3. Beautiful pictures, Susie. Too many simple pleasures to list, so I’ll go with the one I just enjoyed…a tomato, mozzarella and basil sammy with a nice glass of vino.
    Your UMAA Day is coming up, very cool. I’ll be back on Friday, not sure with what, but I’ll figure something out.
    Best, C


  4. I’m am going to have to make a better effort to find beautiful areas in Michigan. I know we have some that would compare to your photos…but right now I’m jealous. I live in a boring, flat area, with no relaxing beaches…or pretty mountains, lakes or forests. Hmm. Obviously I need to relocate up north. 🙂


    1. Go Uupers! Then you can ski!
      I think there are some really nice lakes and forests there. We have dammed up rivers – reservoirs, not the greatest for waterskiing! We can’t have it all! The old joke around here is when California drops into the ocean, we’ll have beach front property!
      Thanks Kristy!


  5. Thanks for taking us along on your beautiful hike. One of my sons lived in Fort Collins a few years ago and swears CO is the best place to live in the world! Loved your husband’s thoughtful surprise! Isn’t that one of life’s very best simple pleasures?


    1. I love Ft. Collins! It isn’t far from here.
      I can’t believe we are coming up on our 25 year anniversary. The years just flew by! I am one lucky girl!
      Thanks Patricia!


  6. Loved this essay. I miss hiking so much! Haven’t been in months… That first pictures made me sigh. Need to get back on the trail. 🙂 Looking forward to another one of your crazy parties on Thursday!


  7. There is conservation land behind our house in NH. No one can build there, so it’s ours to explore. A small pond exists, although it is clogged with leaves and not fun to wade in. We get a lot of wildlife back in there, and I’m usually going out there when I have a few free minutes just to see if I can spy an animal or a bird.

    Your pictures are lovely!


    1. That sounds wonderful! We have a man-made pond in our backyard as part of the neighborhood and it is amazing how much wildlife it supports. I keep binoculars in the kitchen just in case!
      Thanks so much!


    1. Nice! Give a little listen for me! I think the only waves I will hear for a while are in my seashells. Remember that? 🙂
      Thanks Darla. I hope school is going well! 🙂


  8. Wow, Susie, your Droid cell phone takes amazing photos. Those are gorgeous. I hope you’ll do another photo essay when the leaves are changing. How sweet of Danny! Great guy you got there, Susie!


  9. I can’t think of anything more beautiful than this, Susie. Nothing quite like being in the wild – and your husband is a gem for taking wine and crackers! Way to top it off. In an ideal world, the only other simple pleasure I’d add is a campfire… 🙂


    1. I love campfires and haven’t gone camping in a long time. Maybe next summer!
      It was a nice surprise. The fall color is just starting to pop a little so it will be fun to hike again in a few weeks.
      Thanks Alarna!


  10. Hi Susie, stumbled on your photos while searching for a nice path through aspens. Absolutely terrific! I’m wondering if you would mind if I used the first one in the series to blow up and cover an elevator door in a private residence. We want to photoshop in some carved initials in the tree that is up close. If so, can we arrange to get the highest resolution for the print?
    Thanks so much in advance! Stunning images throughout your site!


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