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Colorado 2008 Trip

Day 1 of 10

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Friday, June 27th
Fly to Denver

Our trip started before we even left. This was the first time we'd be car camping with the two boys after a plane trip. We knew it would be very difficult to manage bringing two car seats and all our camping equipment through the airport while managing two little boys. So we had two main options: rent equipment on the other side, or ship it in advance. We decided that while renting would be more cost-effective, it would be nicer to have our own equipment, so we opted to ship things. We shipped our 4 sleeping bags and 4 sleeping pads from one UPS Store in the Bay Area to a UPS Store in Denver. We shipped it out on Tuesday so that it would arrive on Friday, waiting for us to pick it up on Saturday. I figured that even if worse came to worst and it didn't arrive on time, we could resort to renting, but as it was it worked out fine.

We drove through a bit of rush hour traffic to reach the San Francisco airport, then parked in the new long term parking lot (which looked almost full). Even though we had shipped some of our gear in advance, we still struggled with our bags (two car seats, two big bags, another bag, and the child backpack). It wasn't as bad as my worst fears, though, and we made it through. We were surprised that the airline didn't charge us extra for the two big bags, since we were already bracing ourselves for a $100 extra charge.

On the downside, our flight to Denver was delayed by an hour and a half, and we did not arrive until 1:15am. One trick for those of you bringing car seats onto airplanes: twist the airline seat buckle so that it faces backwards. Otherwise, it's almost impossible to release it after you've landed.

After landing, we took the short train ride to the luggage area, got our bags, and then took the shuttle to the rental car place, where we'd made reservations. Unfortunately, when we got there their computers were down and they had to do everything by hand. This took forever (even though there was only one person in line in front of us). I think we arrived at the rental place around 1:50am and didn't leave until 2:40am. Ugh. Rental car places always take longer than I would expect. It may be worth it to join something like Hertz #1 Club Gold just to avoid this aggravation.

We finally arrived at our downtown Denver rental loft around 3:30am. One thing I immediately noticed is that it was quite warm and humid in Denver, even at 3:30am.

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