It’s Spring Break time and every other car in our little tourist town sports an out-of-state license plate.

Not complaining. It’s great for our local businesses.

At our house, grandkids from Texas, siblings, nieces, and friends are coming to enjoy skiing, snowmobiling, and hiking beneath the bright, blue Colorado sky.

Again, not complaining. It’s great to see them.

Spring Break time brings another phenomenon—MUD.

Squishy, slippery, mud puddles line the edges of the road, the yards, the trails. Ruts are carved into every unpaved road. Mud gathers on your shoes, in your car, in your house, on your dogs’ paws. It’s everywhere.

The Forest Service marks hiking, snowshoe, and snowmobile trails based upon safety issues. Many trails close because the roads are deemed unsafe, but you can still see some wonderful snow-covered mountainsides in the Rio Grande National Forest if you are careful.

We ventured out in our four-wheel vehicle with our granddaughter, Catherine, and her friend, Caleb, while they were here.

We did fine until we tried to show Catherine the trail where her father comes to fish every summer. The trail was not blocked nor was it snow covered.

But we did get stuck…in guess what—MUD.

stuck in mud-snowVery stuck. The car sat perpendicular to the roadbed on a very squishy, slippery, rutted road after a failed U-turn.

Catherine, Caleb, and I tried to push our Pilot SUV out of the ditch. No luck.

We slipped rocks under the tires to gain traction. No luck.

We used the dog’s car water dish as a shovel to try to dig out. No luck.

Night was falling fast. The temperatures were dropping. We called for help, but had to leave a message with a friend who has towing capability.

As we sat patiently waiting for a return call, Catherine, our very smart, very talented oboe-playing granddaughter, says, “Floor mats. I think I remember reading to use floor mats under the tires when you’re stuck in snow or mud.”Catherine and Caleb

Brilliant girl, our Catherine. Brilliant guy, Caleb.

Between the added traction from the heavy-duty place mats and the strength of the two college kids pushing from the front, the car, once again, headed back to paved road.

Mud covered us, our jeans, our boots, and our hands, and face, and caked in our hair. The outside of our car was now polka-dotted in mud, and the inside of the car oozed in mud.

While it wasn’t so amazing during the excitement, quite the opposite, I can look back now and say, what an amazing adventure!

And two amazing college kids have returned home with a long-to-be-talked-about Spring Break MUD adventure.