Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Casera Casavento

We truly are very blessed to live in such a beautiful part of this country.  There are many very pretty parts of Italy, but I just cannot get enough of the Dolomite Mountains.  I could see us settling down in Colorado someday because of how much we like the mountains.

I’d heard of the dinosaur footprints a few times and had been wanting to go check them out for quite a while.  Last weekend was beautiful so we decided to drive the hour up near Claut, Italy to check them out.

The drive up was beautiful.  The waters that run in to Lake Barcis are like nothing I’ve seen before.  This is near where we went for the 4th of July.



We weren’t 100% sure where we were going, but we knew the general area.  I had read that there would be signed telling you where to go, which was partially true.  There were a few signs, but they were pretty few and far between.  This picture on the left below was one example of a typical Italian 2 way street.


So we entered the park and started following the few signs we saw.  The paved road was a little bit narrow, but at least it was paved.  And then we went through a series of 10-15 switchback turns that were so tight our SUV couldn’t make it around them without backing up and doing a 3 point turn.  The whole way up Mark and I were wondering if we were going the right way (out loud) and Abbie was asking where we were going and why we were going that way and if that was the right way and were we still in Italy.  Thank God Ben was quiet.


And then our narrow, paved road turned in to an even narrower, unpaved road with steep drop-offs on one side.  There was no place for us to turn around so unless we were going to back down a good bit of it, we were stuck going forward.


Luckily we found a parking lot a little ways up the gravel road and decided to park and explore on foot.  This was our first view on the hike.


Abbie is such a mini-Mark.  She is his little shadow and she wants to do everything that daddy does.  It’s cute.  Ben was enjoying the ride and the view.


The sign on the bottom is the one we were following all along.  Abbie loves to point the way.  She always has.



We hiked up the road for a half mile or so, and then it opened up into a beautiful meadow nestled in the mountains.  I would love to vacation someplace like this someday.  It was so peaceful and relaxing.


Abbie was asking me to take her picture quite a bit, which of course, I did.  I love photographing her.



We wandered back into this small canyon that had a waterfall in it, with a stream running through it.  It was beautiful.


The actual footprint was larger than my hand.  I was under the impression that this was the entire footprint of the dinosaur, but Mark keeps telling me that it’s actually a toe print of the middle toe of the dinosaur.  I’m not sure which is right.


It was fun to climb around on the rocks, over the creek, but a little bit scary rock-hopping over the creek while wearing Ben.  He throws me off balance a little bit and I kept thinking it would be REALLY bad if I feel with him on me.  But luckily nothing happened.  I was pretty careful.


As I said, she is ALL about her daddy.  Almost as much as he is all about her.


Mark and I were taking pictures of the waterfall and we turn around and Abbie was standing ankle deep in the water without a care in the world.  She had a grand time climbing all over the rocks.  It’s fun to see her so independent. 


You can kind of see the second print in this picture.  It’s on the very top, left corner of the rock, in line with the main print.


There was water cascading down the side of the canyon wall, in addition to the waterfall at the end of the canyon.  The kids loved putting their hands in it.



We are enjoying what a good little traveler Ben is right now.  I know that will change all too soon, but for now, he’s happy as a little clam going along for the ride.  He’s at my favorite age still.



There was a tiny café type place in the middle of the meadow.  We would have loved to eat there, but we left our money back in the car so it wasn’t an option.  Boo.  Maybe next time.  And there were free roaming donkeys and cows in the meadow.  Abbie wanted to go see the donkeys of course.


It was a great day trip!  We had a lot of fun and it always feels like an adventure when you explore Italy.  Makes me wonder what other places there are to explore around here that I don’t know about!


My boys!!!  I just can’t get over how smiley our little Benj is.  He is happy most of the time!!


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