Colorado is Calling

San Juan Mountains near Ridgway, CO

We’ve been home a month but I can’t stop thinking about our road trip to Colorado.  The summer heat has me longing for cool mountain rain and massive aspen groves.

Our first night on the road, we rolled in late and found a spot at Jordanelle State Park near Park City, Utah.  After breakfast (eggs-in-jail with fresh fruit on the side) we hit the open road for Dinosaur.  We happened upon a car show in Heber City before moving on to Dinosaur National Monument.  Dinosaur fossils still embedded in the rock, amazing!

Rather than camp in the heat along the Yampa River, we rolled on to cooler territory and found our way to Steamboat Springs, Colorado.  Steamboat was hopping with people tubing the Yampa and rodeo fans.  We drove outside of town through beautiful ranches to Steamboat and Pearl lakes to find a camp spot and ended up at Hahn’s Peak Roadhouse.  We dined and camped at a cool 7,260′ elevation, falling asleep to the sound of a band and coyotes yipping.  The next morning we returned to Steamboat for breakfast at Creekside and a stroll through town where Alice found some new shades!

Then it was on to Denver and the Burlile’s who planned the second leg of our adventure!  Alice and Ruby didn’t waste any time and jumped right into the business of play.  We checked the map and the next morning our convoy set off for Salida, a hip town on the Arkansas River.  Friends of the Burlile’s graciously let us set up camp behind their house by the greenhouse and chicken coop.  Alice was in heaven with all the girls to play grasshopper daycare with.  Luckily we told Janet about the time Alice and Cypress got locked in the camper so she knew just what to do when all the girls locked themselves in, right out through the window!  The constant buzz of humming birds, the bike track with cacti obstacles, and an evening thunderstorm…perfect.

After a few lazy days in Salida, we hit the road toward Gunnison.  While the Burlile’s met brand new baby Nell at the hospital, we drove to the beautiful town of Crested Butte.  That night we camped at Almont campground on the Gunnison River where Jared and Cory caught a few nice browns.

The next day we made our way up and over more majestic mountain passes including Lizard Head Pass in the San Juan mountains to Cayton campground near Rico, Colorado.  We set up our base camp, near 10,000′ elevation along the Dolores River, in the pouring rain.  We spent the next few days exploring the area (mostly in the rain).  Mesa Verde National Park was awe inspiring, Happy 100th Birthday National Parks!  Telluride is a fun, dog loving town with breathtaking views that must be seen from the gondola (it’s free!).

After an epic tour of Colorado, we know firsthand that this is a grand state indeed.  We parted ways from our Colorado friends and headed home to Idaho.  But not before we stopped to eat in Moab (@ Quesadilla Mobilla), stayed in SLC and ate (@ Red Iguana 2) , stayed with cousins in Hailey on the 4th of July, and made our way home through Idaho’s own beautiful Sawtooth Range.  It was quite a trip.

There’s a place where Mother Nature’s got it all together
She knows just when to let wild flowers bloom
Somehow she always seems to know exactly what she’s doin’
And the Lord saw fit to furnish elbow room

Have you ever been down to Colorado?
I spend a lot of time there in my mind
And if God doesn’t live in Colorado
I’ll bet that’s where He spends most of His time

I’d love to be there watching, early in the morning
The sun comes up and crowns the mountain king
If by chance you dare to be there high upon the mountain
I swear that you can hear the angels sing

Have you ever been down to Colorado?
I spend a lot of time there in my mind
And if God doesn’t live in Colorado
I’ll bet that’s where He spends most of His time

Merle Haggard – Colorado

Thanks Colorado.