2017 Colorado Adventure: Day 5

– Tuesday, 6/27/2017 –

Plans for today included some pretty exciting things: rafting on the San Juan River at 2pm, visiting our first, legal marijuana dispensary and the arrival of Josh’s aunt and uncle…the actual reason we went to Colorado to begin with!

First things first.  Our first visit to a legal marijuana dispensary.  I cannot even begin to describe how absolutely foreign this experience was.  It was very much like combining the experiences of going to a strip club, going to a bar and going to the mall all rolled up into one.  San Juan Strainswas the closest dispensary to the cabin, so, that’s where we went.  San Juan Strains touts that it is premier marijuana dispensary located in the San Juan Mountain range of Southwest Colorado.  San Juan Strains’ grow is nestled below this range at approximately 7,600 feet, where cooler mountain temperatures provide a slower growth cycle which prolongs cannabinoid development. This longer maturation process imbues the buds with more complex compounds, yielding deeper, more interesting flavors.  San Juan Strains opened its doors on 4/20/2016 and is literally on the banks of the glorious San Juan River at the junction of US Route 160 and 84 in the town of Pagosa Springs, home of the world’s deepest hot springs.  “Pahgosah” is the Ute word for healing waters and connects San Juan Strains with its’ view of the marijuana plant.

From the outside, San Juan Strains looked like any other strip mall shop, pretty nondescript.  Immediately inside the front door, there was a desk and a receptionist, who asked for identification and kept a hold of said identification while you went into the dispensary.  The signs directed that you must be at least 21 to enter door number two.  Beyond door number two was something very much like a store at a shopping mall – glass cases filled with all things cannabis – actual cannabis, cannabis smoking devices and cartridges filled with cannabis oil for electronic cigarettes.  Sitting on top of the glass counters were glass jars, which were clearly labeled with “strain names” and contained buds of the various cannabis strains that were available for purchase.  You were welcome to open the jars and inspect the buds before purchase.  There were shelves on the walls, stocked with cannabis “edibles” (drinks, gummies, brownies, etc.) and there was a section of hanging clothing, advertising the dispensary.  This particular dispensary has “happy hour” every day from 3pm – 6pm, offering deals on specific items on specific days.  For example, on Wednesday, if you buy 2 grams of any cannabis strain, you get a free cannabis edible.  Sunday’s “wake n’ bake” happy hour offers customers 15% off of cannabis coffee and baked goods.  What a trip!

Josh decided that he favored a strain called “Blue Dream.”  San Juan Strains’ website describes Blue Dream as a “sativa-dominant hybrid originating in California, has achieved legendary status among West Coast strains. Crossing a Blueberry indica with the sativa Haze, Blue Dream balances full-body relaxation with gentle cerebral invigoration. Novice and veteran consumers alike enjoy the level effects of Blue Dream, which ease you gently into a calm euphoria. Some Blue Dream phenotypes express a more indica-like look and feel, but the sativa-leaning variety remains most prevalent.  With a sweet berry aroma redolent of its Blueberry parent, Blue Dream delivers swift symptom relief without heavy sedative effects. This makes Blue Dream a popular daytime medicine for patients treating pain, depression, nausea, and other ailments requiring a high THC strain.”  It didn’t hurt that Blue Dream has a 4.4 out of 5 star rating and 7,754 reviews on San Juan Strains website!  Interestingly enough, when purchased, the cannabis is put into a plastic pill container and labeled with a pretty official-looking label.  We also picked up a pre-filled cartridge that fit our electronic cigarette batteries.  (For anyone interested, 3.5 grams of Blue Dream was $47.05 and the 1 gram sativa cartridge was $74.42, making the total taxable purchase $121.47.  Tax was $20.53.  So, the entire shebang was $142.00.)

After processing legally buying marijuana in a strip mall, we headed across the parking lot to Ski & Bow Rack to purchase Colorado fishing licenses, as we planned to do some fishing during our time in Pagosa Springs.  A five-day non-resident fishing license was $31.  We had fiddled around enough that it was time to head for our rafting trip at 2pm.

We booked the 1/4 day “Splash and Dash” rafting trip with Pagosa Outside Adventures.  The easy, 4.5 mile raft trip was $39 for each adult and offered a 2 hour trip down the San Juan River, cutting right through the middle of Pagosa Springs.  The rafting trip started with a relaxing float a few miles above Pagosa Springs and ended with fun splashy rapids through the downtown Pagosa Springs whitewater park.

After rafting, we headed back to the cabin, as Josh’s aunt and uncle were scheduled to arrive while we were gone.  As luck would have it, they had arrived and got settled just in time for us to surprise them when we got back.  And, what a surprise it was!  Despite months of planning, thousands of miles apart, we had pulled it off and Josh’s uncle had NO idea that we were there!  We spent the rest of the evening hanging out, catching up and discussing options for the rest of the week.  What a great way to end Day 2 in Colorado!

MONEY SPENT TODAY: $427.37 ($159.43 at Walmart for groceries for all of us; $163.30 at San Juan Strains; $62 for Colorado fishing licenses for Josh and I and $42.64 for fuel for the truck.)

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