After the Great Sand Dunes National Park, we took a detour through Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument to Nebraska. After been disappointed at Florissant Fossil Beds (see Fossils Hunting post) we drove on toward Nebraska. As we drove closer to Colorado Springs, we saw some towering red rocks out of nowhere in a densely populated area. We quickly made a detour off the highway to check them out. The place is called Garden of The Gods and I can understand the reason: whoever discovered them probably had thought they were not natural and they might be a place where gods lived.
The only thing I know about Colorado Springs was that it has an Olympics training center. We have not heard of Garden of The Gods. We saw many similar rocks in Utah but weren’t expecting them at Colorado, especially because we haven’t seen any since we left Canyonlands NP. We saw a lot of joggers there, an evidence of its popularity among local residents. The place was well maintained and easily accessible; and surprisingly, it was free.
There were many walking trails; I wouldn’t call most of them hiking trails though. We took a short hike to Siamese Twins and was rewarded with a great view of Pikes Peak. As we were leaving the place through the front entry (we probably came in through a side entry), we noticed a Taiwanese(or Republic of China) flag flying among many other national flags. I was surprised and delighted to see the flag that I grew up with, no matter how corrupted the government is there right now. I inquired inside about it and was told that Garden of Gods was the sister city of Kaohsiung (高雄). What a pleaant surprise to know that although the two countries had no direct diplomatic relationship, private citizens were still reaching out to each other. Sometimes the government does things to benefit itself and disregards many right things to do. It is sad but maybe necessary. I don’t know. I wish I were more intelligent to comprehend this.
That night we stayed at a private campground, Garden of Gods, that night. It was the first time we stayed at a private campground and we didn’t know what to expect. The campsites were close together but luckily there weren’t many tent campers. We had a tent site right next to a playground. Kadia was happy to see the playground and rushed out to play. We have deprived her chance of playing on a playground on the trip so far. Although it costed more at $28 which was our lodging budget for a day, we made a note to stop at a private campground once a while so Kadia can play. Besides, there were laundry and showers facilities that we could always use.