Texans move to Colorado on the daily, and I know exactly why. It's a dream for many Texans who visited Colorado and never wanted to leave. When you dream, dream Big. If you do not you may never know the joy of living in Colorado.
My story starts as a fourth generation Texan choosing to vacation every year in Colorado, as most good Texans do. Growing up proclaiming year after year that “Someday I'll live up there in that Rocky Mountain High - mark my words”. Growing up in the flat, treeless panhandle of Texas for the first 18 years of my life only steeled my resolve. “Someday I'll have mountain waters running outside of my home and the chipmunks and trout will be my neighbors. Someday I'll wake and go angle a Rainbow or climb a peak at whim. Someday. "That day was realized thirty years ago and got clearer in June of 2014.
We grew up fishing for trout in the typical vacationer's fashion; sporting our Folgers coffee can of worms and glistening jar of salmon eggs. Granddad taught me how to catch my limit in any circumstance but Daddy liked to elevate any effort with style and grace so he used one of those strange rods with a reel that did not have a thumb-release. Then in 1992 this art was depicted to me on the big screen ala Brad Pitt in “A River Runs Through It”. My blood was warmed and my fate was sealed.
Fast forward 10 years to my first visit to the Frying Pan outside of Basalt Colorado. This, my friends, is why Texans move to Colorado.
On this fateful day the sun was bright, the waters were clear, and we could see our targets holding effortlessly in the flats of crystal waters. I was instructed to tie on a big, fluffy, “dry fly” and to cast upstream and let the bug float naturally over the fish's head. Suddenly time slowed down. My trout was as big as a football with flashes of pink and white. I saw her see my bug. I saw my bug float right past her mouth. I saw her turn and consider the take. I saw her… BAM! My line went guitar-string tight and all I could hear was someone yelling, “rod tip up!” It was a righteous fight of give and take but we got her to the net. I put my hands on her, I looked her in the eye, I kissed her on the nose, I took my time… and then I let her slip back into her azure nest to bring someone else a little taste of paradise another day. I was,
Since then I've invested a small fortune in gear, started a website to introduce more women to fly fishing, fished with some of the finest, most learned anglers on the planet, caught an assortment of game on a fly-rod including Bass, Carp, Mackerel, and Drum-fish, and decided that the time to start living one's dream should be sooner than later. My dream started small with weekends in the Roaring Fork Valley in the back of my SUV, “in a van down by the river”. I soon decided that a shower was a prerequisite to dining in most Aspen restaurants and I started investing in a hotel room which quickly ate up my entire recreational budget. I considered a six month apartment lease in the heart of Basalt but when I ran the numbers I became discouraged at “throwing away” money when I could be investing. It finally occurred to me that the market was right to dream big and go for a home right smack dab on the river. Why not?
Through a series of buying, staging, and selling, I've been able to trade my way up to a beautiful home on the Blue River. I often take a lunch break to go stand in the river and wave a long stick and I could not be happier. In fact, Happy Hour is no longer constrained to a few hours at the end of the day. I frequently sit on my back porch with a glass of local Colorado wine and thank God that I never limited my dreams to coffee-cans and vans. When you dream, dream big.
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