Cooking Beans at 9,500 ft!
We all know that cooking at altitude takes a bit longer because water doesn't boil at 100 degrees Celsius any more - something to do with air pressure.
So here's me deciding to cook pea and ham soup - it takes about 4 hours all told, as opposed to about 2 hours max back home.
So far, so good? Soup turns out fine, absolutely delish, even if I do say so myself!
HA! One minor problem - split peas are a member of the legumes and if not cooked at a high enough temperature can leave traces of a certain enzyme which can cause flatulence PROOP! PROOOP!
You have now been warned!
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Changing Weather Conditions
The weather in the mountains can change amazingly fast. Within the space of an hour it can go from sunny and bright to stormy/rain/hail/thunder/snow and back to sunny and bright. The temperatures dip well into the negative (fahrenheit) numbers.
Typically in the summer there are afternoon thunderstorms. The claps of thunder are dramatic and exciting. But every year people are killed by lightening in Colorado. Be careful that you keep your eye on the sky and have a way to return to safety at all times.
Naturally wildlife abounds in Keystone. I have a neighborhood fox and in the summer a resident black bear. Although it is fun to catch a glimpse of these, DO NOT FEED THEM. Human food is not bear or fox food and doesn't contain the right nutrients. Wild animals that get accustomed to eating people food forget how to forage for themselves. And when they are fed by humans they may lose their natural fear of people.
I don't think we're in Kansas anymore, Dorothy!
Life at 9,400 feet is not without it's hazards. It's essential to take precautions against altitude sickness. These include but are not limited to:
Drink lots of water (beer does NOT count)
Take it easy for the first 24-48 hours (you'll be amazed at how difficult a flight of stairs might seem)
Use sunscreen liberally
Take asprin for that altitude headache
Go easy on alcohol (you'll become a very cheap drunk!)
Drink more water
The thin air is also very dry and I find it useful to put humidifiers in rooms (Keystone hotels and lodging provides these in all their rooms)
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