Tag Archives: tourism

Estes Park, Colorado

Driving along US 34 East from Loveland to Estes Park (near Drake, Co) ( http://www.technogypsie.com/reviews/?p=31365); New Life in Colorado: Chronicle 26 – Chronicles of Sir Thomas Leaf and Prince Cian. Adventures in Colorado. Photos taken June 2, 2017. To read the adventures, visit http://www.technogypsie.com/chronicles/?p=21965. To read reviews, visit: www.technogypsie.com/reviews. All photos and articles (c) 2017 Technogypsie.com – by Leaf McGowan and Thomas Baurley. All rights reserved. www.technogypsie.com/photography

Colorado, USA

Accessed from Loveland by Highway 34, Estes Park is considered a gateway for the Rocky Mountains and most notably the Rocky Mountain National Park. Located in Larimer County, the Town of Estes Park is a statutory town that is a popular summer resort and vacation hot spot. The town lies along the Big Thompson River and boasts a population just over 5,800 inhabitants (2010 census). The famous landmarks are the Stanley Hote, Baldpate Inn, Lake Este, and Olympus Dam.

Before the Europeans settled here, local tribes camped here – most notably the Arapaho Indians who lived here summers and called the valley “The Circle”. In the 1850s the Arapaho spent many summers camped around Mary’s Lake where their rock fire places, tipi rings, and dance rings can still be seen. They built eagle traps atop Long’s Peak in order to get war feathers. They established a buffalo trap here and used dogs to pack meat out of the valley. They also fought with the Apache here in the 1850’s and fought with the Ute when they hunted bighorn sheep here.

Whites and Euro-Americans first came to the area in the 1850’s as trappers, then the gold/silver prospectors arrived. The town is named after Missouri native Joel Estes who founded the community here i 1859. He moved his family here in 1863. Griff Evans and his family settled here in 1867 and acted as caretakers for the former Estes ranch. They initiated the tourism trade, building cabins for travelers and built the first dude ranch acting as guides for fishing, hunting, and moutaineering. The famous Irish nobleman, politician, and journalist Lord Dunraven settled here as well in the 1920’s. Albert Bierstadt was commissioned by the Earl of Dunraven to make a painting of the Estes Park and Long Peak area in 1876 and was displayed in Dunraven Castle. The young Anglo-Irish peer the 4th Earl of Dunraven and Mount Earl came in 1872 with Texas Jack Omohundro and decided to take over the valley for his own private hunting preserve. His land grab didn’t work, but he controlled 6,000 acres before he changed tactics and opened the area’s first resort – the Estes Park Hotel which was destroyed in 1911 by a fire. In 1873 English woman Isabella Bird explored the area with Rocky Mountain Jim (James Nugent) and wrote a memoir of their travels, featuring the area including their breathtaking ascent of Long’s Peak. In 1974 Rocky Mountain Jim and his neighbor Griff Evans argued and became rivals fighting over doing tours for tourists of the area. The arguments escalated until Evans blasted Jim in the head with his rifle shot gun. Evans traveled to Fort Collins to file an assault charge against Nugent but was arrested for first degree murder, put on trial, but was dismissed due to lack of witnesses of the shooting. He was acquitted.

ALex and Clara MacGregor arrived and homesteaded at the foot of Lumpy Ridge, building a ranch that is now a historic site. In 1874 they incorporated a company to build a toll froad from Lyons to Estes Park, which is now Highway 36 and was at the time the only road fit for pack horses. They used it to ring more visitors into Estes Park, some of which became residents building hotels and promoting tourism. Enos Mills in 1884 left Kansas and relocated to join family in Estes Park, and was integral to helping preserve nearly a 1000 square miles as Rocky Mountain National Park. This was successful in 1915. His brother, Joe Mills came in 1889 writing a series of articles about his experiences for Boys Life which were later published as a book. He and his wife returned to Estes Park to build a hotel called the Crags on the north side of Prospect Mountain. As the Rocky Mountains was deemed a healthy place to live with those suffering from pulmonary diseases, many came here and were catered to by the tourism industry and hotels, providing staff physicians for their care.

By 1903 a road was opened from Loveland through the Big Thompson River Canyon to Estes Park increasing access and bypassing the toll road. A auto stage route was established by 1907. Stanley Steamers were incorporated having Mr Stanley build 9 passenger steam busses opening a bus line from Lyons to Estes Park. In 1949 Olympus Dam was built providing local drinking water resources. In 1909 the Stanley Hotel was built styled in Edwardian opulence and became infamous when writer Stephen King stayed there gaining inspiration for “The Shining”.

in 1982 the town was severely destroyed by the failure of Lawn Lake Dam flooding the area. It was eventually renovated and improved, adding a river walk.

Stanley Hotel, Estes Park, Colorado. (http://www.technogypsie.com/reviews/?p=31369) Exploring Estes Park (http://www.technogypsie.com/reviews/?p=31373). New Life in Colorado: Chronicle 26 – Chronicles of Sir Thomas Leaf and Prince Cian. Adventures in Colorado. Photos taken June 2, 2017. To read the adventures, visit http://www.technogypsie.com/chronicles/?p=21965. To read reviews, visit: www.technogypsie.com/reviews. All photos and articles (c) 2017 Technogypsie.com – by Leaf McGowan and Thomas Baurley. All rights reserved. www.technogypsie.com/photography

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16th Street Mall (Denver, Colorado)

Wandering the 16th Street Mall (http://www.technogypsie.com/reviews/?p=31821)

16th Street Mall
16th street, Denver, Colorado

The iconic “Main Street” that most think of when thinking of the center of Denver. This foot traffic and shuttle bus strip dotted by upscale stores, chain restaurants, and entertainment avenues is one of the hotspots for tourism to Denver. It is a central drop off location for those staying downtown. It offers a lot of activities for its patrons and visitors. It is a central location for entertainment, festivals, fairs, shows, events, flash mobs, street performances, and zombie crawls. It boasts a free transit mall ride or shuttle bus called the Free MallRide. I’ve had many memories of this place from the Denver Freeze to the Denver Zombie Crawls, to late night and daytime activities. During the summer, the center strip was dotted with free pianos to play, lounge chairs, games, chess, bean bags, rolling chairs, and local performances. ~ Leaf McGowan. Visited 8/5/17 – 5 stars out of 5

The tree-lined pedestrian and transit mall runs approximately 125 miles across downtown Denver from Wewatta Street at the historic Union Square to the Civic Center Station at 16th and Broadway. There are over 300 stores dotted along the corridor ranging from chains to locally owned shops. As costs become over the top, more chains have replaced local businesses through time. There are over 50 restaurants and the Denver Pavillions Mall. The Mall opened in 1982 as a pedestrian strip running from Market Street to Broadway but has since expanded to Wynkoop Street in 2001 and to Union Station in 2002. It was designed by Pei Cobb Freed and Partners.

Directory of Services: Please visit web site linked above. As we review various places and events, they will be linked here in the near future.


Past Events:

  • Denver Freeze Flash Mob
  • Denver Zombie Crawls: 1st Annual, 3rd annual

      Wandering the 16th Street Mall (http://www.technogypsie.com/reviews/?p=31821), Denver, Colorado. Scenes from the Streets. New Life in Colorado: Chronicle 26 – Chronicles of Sir Thomas Leaf and Prince Cian. Adventures in Colorado. Photos taken Saturday, August 5, 2017. To read the adventures, visit http://www.technogypsie.com/chronicles/?p=21965. To read reviews, visit: www.technogypsie.com/reviews. All photos and articles (c) 2017 Technogypsie.com – by Leaf McGowan and Thomas Baurley. All rights reserved. www.technogypsie.com/photography

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The Maid of the Mist Tour (Niagara Falls)


Maid of the Mist Tour
* Niagara Falls State Park, Niagara, New York *

If you want to get a good look at the Bridal Veil Falls or the Horseshoe Falls from the American side. It begins as a ferry boat that issues you a rain poncho and takes you out from the calm side of the Niagara River near the Rainbow Bridge. The Tour takes you by the American and Bridal Veil Falls, and then into the spray heavy curve of Horseshoe/Canadian Falls. The tour can be accessed either from the American or the Canadian side. The tour is operated by the Maid of the Mist Steamship Company. The first boat was launched in 1846 to ferry people from Canada to America and vice versa. It lost business when the Suspension Bridge was built and became a tour system. Numerous boats and versions were constructed and used through the years. The very first Maid of the Mist I ran from 1846 until 1854 as a double-stacked steamboat ferry. Business failed in the late 1800’s and was not restored until 1895. The boats have saved a few people who plunged over Horseshoe Falls through the years. The Canadian operations will close in October of 2013. Most likely will be operated by another company on the Canadian side in the near future. Rating: 5 stars out of 5


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Top 5 disappearing places | Wanderlust – Yahoo! News

The U.S. landscape is home to many unique natural formations that took thousands and thousands of years to develop, but as our population — and need for more space — grows, there’s a risk some may be lost to future generations. For your next trip, consider these Top 5 disappearing places and enjoy them before they disappear.

5) The Everglades, Florida: The Everglades is the "largest subtropical wilderness" in the country, but because of human encroachment, rare animals are losing their homes. The national park covers about 1.5 million acres and provides all sorts of outdoorsy adventures: camping, kayaking, boating, hiking and bird watching, to name a few.

4) Sunset Cliffs, San Diego, California: These rugged cliffs run along the Southern California coast, with panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean. It’s popular area with surfers, whale watchers and weddings. The sandstone bluffs, which feature arches and sea caves, are slowly being eaten away by runoff from developments and irrigation.

3) Coral Reefs of Biscayne National Park, South Florida: These delicate reefs, the only living coral feel in the U.S., are must for avid divers, snorkelers and boaters; the park also features an underwater "trail" that allows visitors to explore various shipwrecks within the park. However, the reef’s popularity is also contributing to its disappearance: Some of the coral has declined by 90%, partly due to overfishing.

2) Mesa Verde Cliff Dwellings, Colorado: Pueblo Indians built these 600 cliff dwellings hundreds of years ago, carving them into the sheer sandstone walls. The well-preserved structures range from one-room dwellings to a 150-room "palace." Despite its remote location, pollution, invasive plant species and runoff are just a few of the environmental issues that the park is battling.

1) The Glaciers of Glacier National Park, Montana: In addition to namesake glaciers, the park is also home to bears, gray wolves, golden eagles and lynx. It also features more than 740 miles of trails, so don’t forget your hiking boats. In 1850, this national park boasted 150 giant glaciers; today, only 27 remain. By 2030, even those may be gone.

via Top 5 disappearing places | Wanderlust – Yahoo! News.


Black Mountain Tower (Canberra)

Black Mountain Tower
* http://www.blackmountaintower.com.au/ * 100 Black Mountain Drive, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia * (02) 6248 1911 *

Atop one of the higher peaks overlooking Canberra, is a telecommunication tower situated above the summit of “Black Mountain”. Rising over 195 meters above the Mountain summit, is Canberra’s notable landmark that allows visitors to view panoramic views of the city and its surrounding countryside from an indoor observation deck with two oudoor viewing platforms and a revolving restaurant, business offices, sales, and radio communication facilities that was originally the “Telstra Tower” or “Telecom Tower” that replaced the microwave relay station of Red Hill. Developed by the Department of Housing and Construction under design by William H. Wilson of Sydney, much debate and protest proceeded its construction based on aesthetic and ecological concerns. It was beat in Federal High Court and the government was able to proceed. It was opened on May 15, 1980, was unveiled by the Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser. It annually receives over 6 million visitors. It is responsible for major trunk line radio-telephony facilities, television transmitters for national and commercial services, FM radio transmission, radio paging facilities, mobile radio telephone base station services, and as a cellular phone base station. It cost over 16 million to build.

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Bristol Harbour (Bristol, England)

Bristol Harbour
Bristol, England
In the heart of Bristol, England is the infamous “Bristol Harbour”. This is a historic city center area that covers approximately 70 acres and has existed since the 13th century. Its 19th century style was affected by the installation of lock gates on the tidal stretch from River Avon to City Centre and providing a tidal by-pass for the river. It is now a “Floating Harbour” as the water level remains constant and not affected the river’s tidal fluctuations. Netham Lock is the eastern upstream limit of the harbour beyond which is a junction – one arm the navigable RIver Avon that continues upstream to Bath, and on the other a tidal River Avon. The First mile of floating harbour downstream from Netham Lock is an artificial channel known as the feeder canal while the tidal River Avon follows its original route. Between Bristol Temple Meads railway station and Hotwells, the harbour and the River Avon run parallel at a distance of approximately .65 miles apart. At the railway station the Floating Harbour occupies the original bed of the River Avon and meanders through Bristol’s city centre, Canon’s Marsh, and Hotwells. To the south the River Avon flows through the artificial channel known as “New Cut”. The separation of the floating harbour and the tidal River carries currents and silting into the harbour that prevents flooding. In Hotwells, the floating harbour rejoins the river through a series of locks and flows into the Avon Gorge. This Harbour is also the original Port of Bristol but has turned to much smaller ships as modern ships and cargo are too big for this small harbour being re-routed to the docks at Avonmouth and Portbury 3 miles downstream at the mouth of the River Avon. The harbour is now a shopping and tourist attraction with museums, galleries, exhibitions, bars, and nightclubs. It has become a city cultural center with highlights such as the Arnolfini art gallery, Watershed media and arts centre, Bristol Industrial Museum, Museum of Bristol, At-Bristol science exhibition center, and fashionable apartment buildings. Museum boats are permanently berthed in the harbour including Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s SS Great Britain, the first iron-hulled and propeller driven ocean liner. A replica of the Matthew in which John Cabot sailed to North America in 1497 also sits in the harbour. The historic vessels of the Industrial Museum, which include the steam tug Mayflower, firefloat Pyronaut and motor tug John King, are periodically operated. The Bristol Ferry Boat operates at the harbour, serving landing stages close to most of the harbour-side attractions and also providing a commuter service to and from the city centre and Bristol Temple Meads railway station. Bristol was a village that grew up along the banks of the Rivers Avon and Frome. Somewhere around 1240, an artificial deep channel called the “Saint Augustine’s Reach” was built to flow into the River Avon and became the heart of Bristol’s docks with quays and wharfs. Beginning in the 13th century, the rivers became modified for use as docks including the diversion of the River Frome. Since the River Avon inside the gorge mixed with the River Severn can have tides fluctuating 30 feet in between high and low water made the river easily navigable during high-tide but difficult to get through during low tide, stranding ships – first utilized to unload when the tides went down and deliberately stranding ships. This gave term to the phrase “shipshape and Bristol fashion” to describe boats that could handle repeatedly being stranded. 1420 there were vessels from Bristol regularly heading out to Iceland with rumors that sails from Bristol had already made landfall in the Americas before Christopher Columbus or John Cabot. When Cabot came to Bristol, he propositioned the king that he could reach Asia by sailing west across the north Atlantic and that it would be shorter and quicker than Columbus’ southern route. He got agreement and funding. 1670 the City had 6,000 tons of shipping of which half was used for importing tobacco and later heavily for the slave trade. Since the 1980’s millions of pounds have been invested in re-working the harbourside. By 1999 the Pero’s footbridge was finished and linked the At-Bristol exhibition with the tourist attractions. 2000 saw the opening of the At-Bristol center over the semi-direlict land at Canon’s Marsh and some of the Grade 2 listed buildings became refurbished and re-utilized. Over 44.3 million pounds from the National Lottery and another 43.4 million from the Bristol city council and partners invested in revitalizing the area. Construction of theaters, retail buildings, new flats, homes, and watershed offices. Today there are many festivals held in this area – such as the Bristol harbour Festival every July where tall ships and all other boats come attracting over 200,000 visitors with live music, street performances, and entertainment. Since 1996 it has been the tromping grounds of various festivals including the first International Festival of the Sea. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.

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The Pee Deflectors of Amsterdam

Pee Deflectors
Amsterdam, Holland
An interesting aspect of grungy, dark cornered areas on Amsterdam, is the city’s methods to keep the city clean and odor-free by teaching those drunken fools who think every little corner is their personal urinal. Most of the buildings near the main squares in Amsterdam are equipped with “pee deflectors” that were installed by the Dutch government. This was instituted from a late 1980’s survey that was conducted asking Amsterdam-ians what disturbes you most about tourists … their answer “they pee on our buildings and stench up our alleys”. 80% of the residents stated this. So city hall devised the implementation of pee deflectors that would splash the pee back on the pisser to teach them a lesson. Most of these are triangular shaped metal sheets that protrude and are angled to splash pee back on the man conducting the act. Some have sharp barbs to conduct a lesson of pain on the perpetrator. In the 1980’s they had electrical charges running through some of the deflectors so that the law-breaker would be shocked, but some accidents happened and it was determined inhumane. In some of the main squares they installed open-air urinals for the men. Women were upset that they had no wear to pee in public so they staged a “piss off” on some of the bridges. In response, the city created sheltered toilettes for women, but they were taken over by heroine users and drug dealers so had to be boarded up. Now there is no place in public for women to pee, and they get a heftier fine if caught squatting than a man gets for peeing in the corner. Continue reading The Pee Deflectors of Amsterdam