Thursday, January 4, 2007

The Joys of Winter Break in a College Town

Life in a college town can be kind of strange. Depending on the time of year in Boulder, there can be a very rapid population drop of about 20,000 people over the span of a few days. And considering that most of these people are students (the segment of the population that I find by far the most bothersome) these occasional 20% drops in the amount of cars on the road, people on the trails and everything else are usually my favorite times of the year.

Now, I'm not going to completely dissmiss the college kids because I was one of them once. Well, a few times actually and for quite awhile when you add up all the semesters. Maybe a bit too long if you ask the Federal Student Loan Bureau.

But anyway, the best thing about the University of Colorado (besides the quality education of course) is the campus itself. And the best thing about the campus is that it stays here when all the chumps paying out-of-state tuition get on planes and fly back to California, Texas, New York and wherever else they think it's okay to pay private school prices for a public institution.

Most importantly, these breaks in class schedules provide locals the opportunity to cruise around the campus unencumbered by the throngs of coffee-toting, iPod-wearing kids wandering all over the place during the school year. This is really a good thing. Especially when there has been 3.5' of snow in a little over a week and the miles of cleared walkways and paths around campus are easy to run and ride on.

These photos are just a few random shots I took while C-Mac and I were running up there a few days ago. We were out for a little over an hour, did a few circuits of the campus and saw a total of two other people running. Nice.

Don't get me wrong, I have had the opportunity to visit a number of beautiful schools including Stanford, Pepperdine, Berkeley, Oregon and Washington. But honestly, none of them even comes close to CU for location, views and consistently impressive architecture.

Furthermore (although completely off the subject), CU is to collegiate cycling what UCLA and Notre Dame are to basketball and football. What else do I need to say?

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