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Albert Maywood Courtright II

Reminiscences of Maywood Courtright

We Leave Boulder and Head South and West

I was not interested in receiving credit for my four weeks at the University and the last day of classes we packed everything in the car ready to start south the next morning. Before leaving, while the others were putting things in the car I went to see what kind of an exam the class in orchestration had. It was, as I had been told, quite difficult. We stopped in Colorado Springs, which is just a short distance from Boulder, and drove out to see the Garden of the Gods, a park on the west side of town that I was familiar with because of stereopticon pictures of a big rock, about thirty feet high and balanced on a small spot on one end, which we kept in the parlor in Paulding, one of the first things I can remember. Nearly every family had stereopticon pictures and a viewer for entertainment around 1910. We probably visited things in Denver but the Garden of the Gods is all I remember. Then we drove on south to Colorado Springs where we found cabins for the night.

I wanted to stay in Colorado Springs, at that period a small but very neat town, because I wanted to see Pikes Peak, one of the few mountain peaks kids of my generation had heard of, perhaps because of the alliteration, perhaps because of the publicity it had received when some of the early cars driving west had had banners on them with the slogan, “Pikes Peak or Bust.” At any rate, everyone had heard of Pikes Peak and travel literature indicated a road had recently been built to the top. The manager of our motel said it was gravel but in good shape and char-a-bancs (open busses seating about a dozen people) regularly made the trip. When we reached the road that turned off to the south at Green Mountain Falls there was a sign indicating Pikes Peak. We said, “Pikes Peak or Bust,” and turned south. The going was easy at first, I could drive in second gear, then it began to get steeper with many switchbacks and the motor began to heat up. With four adults and two children plus a trunk and car full of baggage I decided discretion was the better part of valor and began looking for a place to turn around. We were carrying too much weight. The engineers who designed the road had not considered that anyone would want to go back before reaching the top and the radiator was steaming by the time I found what I was looking for. I managed to get the car turned around and headed downhill but at the cost of badly damaging the baggage rack I had built back of the trunk. It dragged on the ground and had to be ripped off. We piled what it contained on top of the stuff in [the] back seat, leaving barely enough room for the two girls and Alan and Yolande. That’s the way we travelled the rest of the trip. They didn’t mind. They sat on suitcases on the back seat and could see out better.

Table of Contents
Exploring by Car
Mesa Verde National Park

Last modified on 15 April 2021 17:59