The Journey to Denver
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Posted July 19, 2007

Category: Haby News

1. The graphic below was from the first day of summer, June 21. The red numbers are the temperature and the green numbers are the dewpoint. On this day notice it is hotter in Denver (DEN) than in Texas and Mississippi. Even with the mile high elevation it can get to 100+ in Denver in summer. Also notice how low the dewpoint is in Denver. When it does get hot in Colorado at least it is usually a dry heat. My journey will take me from Starkville, MS through Memphis, TN (MEM), through Little Rock, AR (LIT) on Interstate 40, through Oklahoma City, OK (OKC) (go Sooners!, beat probation!), through Wichita, KS (ICT) and through Salina, KS on Interstate 35 and then the long final stretch on the famous Interstate 70 through the high plains to Denver (DEN) and into the northern suburb of Denver... Brighton, CO!. I'll be singing the chorus to "Rocky Mountain High" and drinking a Red Bull energy drink as the Rockies become visible while driving through eastern Colorado.



John Denver - Rocky Mountain High

He was born in the summer of his 27th year,
coming home to a place he'd never been before.
He left yesterday behind him
you might say he was born again,
might say he found a key for every door.
When he first came to the mountains
His life was far away
on the road and hanging by a song.
But the strings already broken
and he doesn't really care,
it keeps changin' fast, and it don't last for long.
It's a Colorado Rocky Mountain High,
I've seen it raining fire in the sky
The shadows from the starlight are softer than a lullabye.
Rocky Mountain High, ...in Colorado....
Rocky Mountain High.

He climbed cathedral mountains, he saw silver clouds below,
saw everything as far as you can see.
And they say that he got crazy once and that he
tried to touch the sun,
and he lost a friend, but kept the memory.
Now he walks in quiet solitude, the forest and the stream,
seeking grace in every step he takes,
his sight is turned inside himself, to try and
understand, the serenity of a clear blue mountain lake.

And the Colorado Rocky Mountain High,
I've seen it raining fire in the sky
You can talk to God and listen to the casual reply.
Rocky Mountain High, ....in Colorado....
Rocky Mountain High.

Now his life is full of wonder,
but his heart still knows some fear,
of the simple things he can not comprehend.
Why they try to tear the mountains down
to bring in a couple more.
More people, more scars upon the land.

It's the Colorado Rocky Mountain High,
I've seen it raining fire in the sky
I know he'd be a poorer man if he never saw an Eagle fly
Rocky mountain high
It's the Colorado Rocky Mountain High,
I've seen it raining fire in the sky.
Friend around the camp fire and everybody's high....
Rocky Mountain High, Rocky Mountain High,
Rocky Mountain High,
Rocky Mountain High


2. I thought the grass would be nice and green in Colorado and sure enough it is pretty green. Denver is on the western edge of tornado alley. Chasing will involve heading toward the east over the spacious plains. A common type of storm around Denver is the low moisture storm. These are beautiful to watch since you can see the whole structure of the storm. There are fewer clouds, fewer trees and less precipitation that block the view of the storm and as an added bonus they most often occur during the daylight hours. I will be seeing many of these type storms in the future. They are often called motherships since the wall cloud and striations into the updraft look like a huge saucer. One of my current students took this photo below.

Photo by Steve Hamilton, May 2007, 30 miles SE of Denver