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Pork and PBR

Scott CondonAspen, CO Colorado

Every now and then I get a hankering for a Pabst Blue Ribbon beer (or three or six, but that’s a different matter).I don’t particularly like PBR, but it brings back fond memories of my misspent youth in rural Iowa. The urge to drink a PBR inevitably wells up inside me after a hard workout on the trails of Spring Gulch, the delightful cross-country ski area outside of Carbondale.On my latest trip there, before the 60 degree temperatures and Thursday’s rain, the conditions couldn’t have been better. The snow cover has been good all season, the grooming has been satisfactory and scenery can’t be beat.Looks are always deceiving when you pull into the parking lot of the cross-country ski area. It’s usually filled to capacity with vehicles. Then you hit the trail and wonder where everyone is hiding.The parking lot is also used by a handful of people usually sledding on a hill across the way and by people walking their dogs further up Thompson Creek Road, which is closed just pass Spring Gulch’s parking lot. It’s virtually impossible to feel crowded on Spring Gulch’s trail network, regardless of how many cars crowd the base.Anyway, back to the PBR. After departing Spring Gulch on that warm afternoon, it dawned on me that it had been a while since I had stopped at Carbondale’s Pour House, one of the best watering holes remaining in the valley for working stiffs. The added bonus for me is the Pour House is one of the few places in the valley that stocks PBR longneck bottles and serves pork tenderloin sandwiches. Talk about hog heaven.It might not be as exotic as a day on Aspen Mountain and dinner at Cache Cache, but for a nice dose of reality and simplicity, give me Spring Gulch and the Pour House on a regular basis.