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Ramblers Interviewed: Jennifer and Nathan’s Ride to Panama

Months before we left before we left for the trip, I received an email from Jennifer.  She said she stumbled upon my website while researching her trip to Central America.  She and her boyfriend, Nathan, were planning to drive to Panama in a modified Dodge Ram equipped with 4 wheel drive.  “Hey and if your in the ASPEN area, stop by!!” she wrote. “We’d show you a great time up here in the mountains!”

While we were in Arizona, I called Jennifer to take her up on her offer.  Once we started talking, Jennifer and I started to realize we had more in common than we thought – we are both from North Carolina, and we both graduated from UNC Chapel Hill.  Small world, eh?

Jennifer and Nathan are a perfect example of the hospitality we have experienced throughout our trip.  When we arrived we were all strangers, but they welcomed us with open arms and were wonderful hosts.  We were toured around Aspen, went to a bonfire, ate great food that they cooked for us, and traded tips about the trip.

Below is a video tour of Jennifer and Nathan’s van that they will drive from Aspen, Colorado, to Panama with their 2 dogs.  I will warn you, their van looks like a palace compared to our truck – it is equipped with a small kitchen, a bed that collapses into a dining area, and even a toilet!  Feel free to comment on the post if you have any questions about the vehicle.

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Aspen is a gorgeous town, and after Jennifer and Nathan toured us around, I learned quite a bit of random but odd facts about Aspen.  Aspen is the land of the wealthy, but it also attracts people who love the outdoors, yet aren’t filthy rich.   People from all over the United States who love biking, skiing, hiking, rock climbing and rafting migrate to Aspen and PUT UP WITH being surrounded by multi-million dollar homes and the high cost of living.

So here it is…

Aspen High School has a ski lift that picks students up at the school

We visited a trailer park in Aspen – the trailers sell for around $1 million each.

For people in their 20’s the ratio of men to women is about 10 to 1.
For people in their 30’s the ratio of women to men is about 10 to 1.

During the off-season the local population is about 5,000.
During ski season, the population can get up to 20,000.

It is about $100 a day to ski.  A season pass costs about $2,000.

Aspen is a very bike friendly and dog friendly town.  Lance Armstrong even has a house in Aspen due to the bike trails.

The X Games are hosted a in Aspen every year.

Estimated median house or condo value in 2007: $765,544

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