The Denver Stop-over of the Arizona Expedition

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Denver, Thursday afternoon, 3:45 PM. I'm sitting in my office at work in a meeting. I should have been on the road on the way home by now. Somehow these meetings always seem to stretch on past my quitting time. It had been a tough day and I was looking forward to relaxing with a cool one. 

My pager goes off. I can't even get away from the work grind before they start paging me again. Looking at the display I read about 15 numbers, none of them making any sense. Oh well, that's one page I don't have to answer. Back to the meeting and going over a problem that we had gone over only about 100 times before. The pager goes off again. Looking at the display I read about 12 numbers this time. The first 3 make sense as the area code but what to do with the rest of the mess. Forget it and back to the meeting. The pager goes off again. Maybe the third times the charm. Looking at it's display one more time, anything to get away from the meeting, I notice that this time the number makes sense. Excusing myself from the discussion, thank god for the excuse, I dial the number. Tomahawk Truck Stop, the voice on the other end of the phone says. Maybe the number isn't good after all. I explain who I was and that someone had paged me. I hear the voice on the other end yell, "Did anyone page Leonard"? Then after a minute I hear "Leonard, it's Mike". Suddenly I remember. Earlier in the week I had seen a posting on alt.mining.recreational newsgroup with the itinerary for Mike's Arizona Expedition. It listed Colorado as pass-through. I had emailed Mike and asked what towns he was passing through and he had replied "Denver". I had given him my pager number and said "Give me a page when you get in town. We'll go out for a beer or two". 

Mike asks "Where can we meet"? I interrupt the meeting and ask everyone "Where's a good place to meet someone that doesn't know the area"? After a few minutes discussion we settle on a spot and I relay the directions to Mike. We'll meet at a bus park and ride right along the interstate. The meeting finally disintegrates, I change clothes and I'm off to meet with Mike. Thanks to leaving work late the traffic sucks and I arrive late. I'm in a parking lot with about 200 cars and searching for Mike's car. I had planned on beating him there and stopping him at the entrance. Oh well, nothing else had gone right today. Why would I expect this to be any different. As I look for a parking spot I see someone approaching me. "Leonard" he says. Mike had found me.

Mike introduces me to his wife, Kim, a really hot lady. Too good for him. Kim, DIVORCE HIM AND MARRY ME!  We decided to go to a bar for a drink and a place to sit. This isn't my part of town so I tell them "Follow me. A bar shouldn't be too hard to find". Off we go and for once I was right. We drove about 4 blocks and there we were.

Kim, Leonard, and Mike in a serious prospecting discussion
(Our thanks to the kind lady who took this picture for us)

The afternoon weather was perfect! We sat in the sun with Mike drinking Coors, (because he was in Colorado he had to try one), me with a passable microbrew, and Kim with what must have been lemonade from the color, we discussed prospecting in our local areas and possible routes to take to his destination. When Mike ordered a second Coors I began to question his taste in beers. I definitely knew he couldn't be a serious beer drinker. BillBrew, his dry washing partner confirmed this a week later.

The table a little later. I think a couple of my glasses must have been removed. I can't believe I only had one while Mike had three!

Mike planned on breaking out the gold pan at various locations on his trip so what better to do after a few drinks than go panning right here in the heart of Denver. I have dredged previously in several locations right in the middle of town on Clear Creek and the creek wasn't more than several hundred yards from where we sat.

Continue to Part 2

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