What I’m seeing

Reflections of mountain peaks at Bar Lake

Barr Lake was once a buffalo wallow but when I was young it was a stinky cesspool. It’s located northeast of Denver, along I-76, and for over 70 years it was where Denver sent its sewage. You held your nose as you went by in the 1950s and 1960s. It was far out in the country then, too.

The sewage is gone and it’s a state park. The city has arrived in a different way. There’s Lowe’s and the rest of the mass retailers across the highway.

Cathy Casper and I have gone there occasionally in the evening to see the eagles and pelicans and observe the often bold, dramatic sunsets. Last evening’s vivid colors as seen through my telephoto lens reminded me of Albert Bierstadt’s paintings of the 19th century West.

Colorado has a 14,000-footer named Bierstadt, southwest of Denver, cheek by jowl with Mt. Evans. I climbed it twice, once in winter. From the perspective of Denver, the sun sets behind Mt. Evans and Bierstadt during winter. During summer, it sets behind Longs and Meeker. The mountains in this photo might be those two mountains. I climbed both those, and Cathy climbed the latter in 2000.

Oh, those were the glory days. These are too, but in different ways.

Just one added thought: Can you imagine that Denver once just sent its sewage to a lake? I imagine it just seemed the thing to do. Plus, we probably developed better technology. Someday people will look back and ask: Can you imagine that we just spewed carbon dioxide and methane into the troposphere? Whatever were they thinking? — Allen Best