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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Fire at the Orange Creek

May 17th

A great day. We've been on the road for 12 days now and our time in the southwest is coming to an end. Woke up this morning on the edge of the Rio Grande gorge. A very interesting spot, I wish I could explore more of this awesome river.

We drove off but found ourselves a little haunted still from the night before. We were driving north today and going far. Maybe we were a bit superstitious but New Mexico had a dark feel to us now, at least that area as we drove through more of the Carson forest. We passed abandoned towns and lonely roads lined with birch and aspen trees. Then we passed this ranch and I should have gotten a picture, but there was a life like dummy hanging from a noose from the gate of the ranch. The yard was full of junk, the place also looked abandoned. I don't know what creepy stuff has happened in this forest but the dark spirits certainly linger. That ranch was the last building we passed for many miles.

We saw barely a car as we drove a beautiful road towards Colorado. It climbed a mountain pass up to 10,000 feet. Lovely Alpine scenery, then after passing through a couple last backwards New Mexican towns, we suddenly popped out in Pagosa Springs Colorado! A place I passed through on my road trip to Montana last year! We love Colorado.

Went to Durango and drank some 5 hour energies to get crazy. We only had 2 hours of sleep the night before. We had a great time as we turned to highway 550, the San Juan Skyway. One of the most fabulous roads for scenery in the country I've been here before and it felt so great to revisit.

As we got closer to Ouray, we stopped more and more. The energys wearing off now we felt absolutely horrible. Silverton is a very beautiful little mountain town.

The highway was closed to Ouray untill 6:30 so we drove to a place called Iron Pour Park on top of Red Mountain Pass. It's an old abandoned mining settlement with a river contaminated bright orange from the mine tailings. There are also a couple mountains there that are bloody red colored it's a very cool spot.

So we finally rested after such a long drive, we were totally worn out. I went to cook our food and my propane stove exploded...! We were at 10000 feet of elevation with fresh propane cans and it sprung a leak which lit on fire, the stove became engulfed in flames. Maggie jumped so fast out of the truck bed and ran and I flung the flaming stove and all the food off the tailgate and onto the ground. We stood there a minute watching it burn and waiting for a possible explosion but it went out. There goes all our food! Actually we slowly cleaned up this huge mess and was able to pick all the food up off the ground, rinse it off and still use it. I built a fire and after some labor over wet wood we had food!

 After a long rest by the orange creek we felt great again and decided to drive onward to Ouray, a nice spot I know to camp. A little excitement in our day was just what we needed. The evening road was amazingly beautiful, the best part of the San Juan Skyway. Huge waterfalls pouring down the giant cliff faces and mountains. A beautiful overlook on Ouray.

Then the road going to the spot I knew it was closed! Crap, now it's getting dark and we need to find a spot. Oh well, and we walked around the quaint little town. We quickly found a spot on a cliff side in the Uncompahgre National Forest looking down on our river and turned in for bed.

1 comment:

  1. Mike,

    I love reading your blog everyday. Seems like you and Maggie are having a blast! :) BTW, I have a letter for you, so I need an address when you get a chance.