On July 4, 2023 my folks and I drove south from where they live to the Colorado Springs area. The forecast indicated a high chance of severe thunderstorms, but we arrived at Garden of the Gods to beautiful sunshine. I had just enough time to briefly hike through this unique, but crowded, park before a huge thunderstorm moved through, creating some dramatic lighting. We hoped to catch some breaks between storms during our timed entry slot for Pike's Peak, and were not disappointed. The drive up was incredibly beautiful, with amazing views, light, and clouds the whole way. We arrived at the top just as they locked down to shelter in place with another storm passing through, complete with grape sized hail. Eventually it passed and we were able to see the views from the top and descend before more storms closed in. On the way home more severe storms made the drive quite an adventure with lots of lightning and pouring rain with almost zero visibility at times. Once we got back to Loveland the storms were past and we got to enjoy a great fireworks display over the lake.