“The mountains are calling, and I must go.” If those words from John Muir resonate with you, you’ll love Erik Stensland’s new book of photos and essays, WHISPERS IN THE WILDERNESS, which has been named “Best Inspirational Book of the Year” by both the Independent Book Publishers Association and the National Indie Excellence Awards. Stensland, a longtime Rocky Mountain National Park landscape photographer based in Estes Park, wrote much of the book while on hikes in the park, when he had “a chance to reflect on life and what is happening deep inside of me.” The book, which he says aims “not to explain nature, but to explore our inner lives through the window of the natural world,” is meant to be read slowly—a couple of pages at a time—to fully absorb his contemplative messages.
YOU TALKIN’ TO ME?
Normally, we humans have a strictly transactional relationship with parking meters: Put in money, avoid parking ticket. But recently we encountered sound artist Jim Green’s three meters in Stapleton’s Eastbridge Town Center plaza. Walk past the unobtrusive-looking black meters and they suddenly get your attention: One might call out to you, “It’s a beautiful day! You’re terrific!” Another might play the sound of an engine starting; a third might play sounds of ocean waves or seagulls. Green likes getting his message across in unexpected ways: In the past, he created the talking water fountains at DIA, as well as a talking fence downtown.
A FISH STORY
Fall is a perfect time to be out on the river fly fishing in Colorado, and Angler’s Covey, based in Colorado Springs, offers everything from beginner’s lessons (including a free one-hour class) to a $295 pull-on-your-waders four-hour class. If you’re already an experienced fisherman (or -woman), you can hire one of Covey’s fly fishing guides, who have a cumulative total of thousands of hours on the river. From half-day “Walk and Wades” to full-day kayak trips, and float trips on the Arkansas tailwaters, the Orvis-endorsed shop has a fish tale for everyone (angler-scovey.com). And Colorado Parks and Wildlife has released a new mobile fishing app for anglers looking for info on more than 1,300 fishing locations in the state, regulations, and species availability—and even lets you record catches on the spot. Find the CPW Fishing app in the Apple app store or Google Play.
Long fans of the clever, insider-y Wildsam Field Guides, we were thrilled to discover that the six-year-old company has recently put out a version for Denver. Filled with curated lists of the city’s “bests” (food and drink, shopping, things to do), maps (to cool local artisans, craft beers, ghost towns, green chiles), interviews with locals (butcher Kate Kavanaugh, photographer John Fielder, ski builder Casey Day), stories (by the likes of Pam Houston, Robert Pyle, and J.R. Moehringer), the $20 guide is like the ultimate pocket-sized introduction to the Mile High City. Leave one in your guest room.
We hiked. We biked. We SUPed. And, after a summer of fun, we’ve got the, erm, not-so-sightly pedicure to prove it. Thank goodness for PurLuxe Beauty Bar. The luxury Cherry Creek salon, which opened in July, has a pedicure just for making feet silky smooth again. The Cool as a Cucumber, $55, scrubs away dry skin with a cucumber and essential oil soak (you pick the oil scent—we loved the lavender), cucumber scrub and lotion, a paraffin dip, and a fresh new coat of organic polish (including brands like Dior and Chanel). Let’s just say it’s an hour very well spent. 3250 E 1st Ave.