Hey, Spike! tells an oft-told tale of Colorado mountain love
October 1, 2016
It's a typical story, but a great one — always.
Midwest families come on vacation with the young 'uns and the thrill is never gone; it only grows more intense. Later, those kids grow up and bring their offspring back to the mountains.
Another version of this oft-told tale is the Bradford "Brad" Foreman family of Rapids City, Illinois (population 970).
"My dad and mom, Michael and Gail, took us on a family ski trip in the '70s to Summit County from upstate New York, where we three boys, twins Doug and Scott, were raised. This is where my love for Colorado started," Brad recalls. "Since those days our family has made an effort to be in the Colorado mountains as much as possible."
In an even more personalized recollection: "We spread my brother-in-law's ashes (Rick Fording) above Mohawk Lake and on Buffalo Mountain; I sure hope that didn't break any unknown mountain code."
Nowadays, Brad manages the family's Peak Investments.
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"This is our company founded in the '90s for investments in the mountains. We try and provide the best value accommodations for visitors and workers in Summit County. Our one Riverside Lodge in Silverthorne has 60 plus pillows and we are proud to have hosted travelers from all over the world. Our lodge is nestled on the Blue River, where guests can fish classic trout water and cook their own meals in one of our two kitchens. We love being right across from the rec center and the Summit Stage stop, too.
"We appreciate all the support the town of Silverthorne and the town's businesses have extended to us and we look forward to improving our product in the years to come," he notes.
Brad and wife Sandy have three children: Hunter, a University of Vermont grad; Nichole, a University of Colorado Boulder grad; and Gabby, who is attending her last year at the University of Iowa.
"Thank God, the eldest two have great jobs following their recent graduations," adds the proud father.
Even with busy work and school schedules, the Foremans maintain close ties here.
"We try and spend one week per month on The Summit, and this is working out better now (that) we are 'empty nesters.' We still have fun discovering new areas to hike even after all these years. But when guests come to visit we don't mind doing one of the classics like Cataract Lake or Peak 1. We love to see how the county's infrastructure has matured to accommodate more diversified activities, dog sledding and zip lining to name just a few."
Brad earned a business degree and made the wrestling team at Northern Arizona in Flagstaff, graduating in 1982. He followed that up with an international business degree from Thunderbird/American Graduate School of International business in '87. Another graduate of Thunderbird is Breckenridge Tourism Office CEO Lucy Kay.
Still very active at 55, Brad continues his mountain trekking and topping some notable elevations.
"I climbed fewer than many of the Colorado local superstars, but have done some 14ers and 13ers — a few for charity purposes," says Brad.
His resume of peaks elsewhere includes Mount Rainier at 14,416-feet above sea level; Grand Teton, 13,776; two times up Kilimanjaro, 19,341, in Africa; Japan's Mount Fuji, 12,388; Argentina's Aconcagua, 22,841; Everest Base Camp in Nepal, 17,600; and Morocco's Toubkal, 13,671.
"The nature, beauty and the camaraderie of my fellow climbers is what will keep me climbing for as long as I am able, God willing," Brad says.
The Foremans have sailed as passengers in the South China Sea, Mediterranean and Galapagos.
"I have discovered that some of our best family trips are when the kids — and the adults, for that matter — are unplugged and enjoying the moment," adds Brad.
Miles F. Porter IV, nicknamed "Spike," a Coloradan since 1949, is an Army veteran, former hardrock miner, graduate of Adams State College, and a local since 1982. An award-winning investigative reporter, he and wife Mary E. Staby owned newspapers here for 20 years. Email your social info to email@example.com
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