On this last week of our road trip we made it to Colorado. We are now very intrigued with the idea of spending a lot more time in Colorado. We drove past a number of venues that landed on our to do list!
It helped that our first park, Lake Pueblo State Park, was terrific! The sites were huge and the views were expansive.
I found a very nice Safeway! It was the nicest grocery store I’ve been to on the whole trip. I confess to being a grocery store snob. I like new, clean, well-stocked stores that have a Starbucks. Although not every Safeway is this nice, I always look for them.
One evening we watched a storm roll in. We watched for too long because the next thing we knew we were getting wet through our ceiling vent. It closes automatically when it detects rain but the wind was blowing so hard that it couldn’t.
Randy was trying to help it close and keep the water out while I was wiping up the water coming in through our window weeping holes.
The next morning we had to go searching for Elko’s water bucket and were surprised to find it!
I talked with the camp host who said they were enjoying their experience but had 98 sites by themselves. Whew! That is a lot but we liked the park well enough to consider it in the future.
Next we traveled to Curecanti National Recreation Area near Gunnison. We had a nice site there too. Our big event was the National Park Service Morrow Point Boat Tour. Once you get to the parking lot you go down 232 steps to water level.
Then you walk a mile along the old railroad grade until you find the boat.
We had a delightful tour learning about the geology and history of the area. We learned about the quest to build the narrow gauge Denver- Rio Grande Railroad through the Black Canyon Gorge. It was so difficult that a number of men died and eventually they had to bring in foreign labor. Beginning in 1882, the railroad hauled ore, coal, livestock and passengers for 67 years.
We saw some interesting rock cliffs!
It was a great trip even though we then had to go up those 232 steps!
If Colorado is so Colorful, why are their signs so plain? And why are people putting travel stickers on the Utah sign?
We arrived at Green River State Park in Utah which has a golf course on site. Randy doesn’t golf often but this was so convenient! He came by mid-round for a Guinness.
When our neighbors pulled in they had one of those “I can’t believe I did that” moments when the gentleman closed the tailgate and started to pull forward before he had cleared the trailer hitch. Randy was over there for a while helping him get it cleared. No condemnation here! Everyone has those moments – like our Missouri Oops!
(In an interesting add on: The next night Randy was out there again helping ANOTHER couple in site 25! This time an Airstream trailer door/ lock wouldn’t work and they couldn’t get in. The woman finally went in and out through a window but they still couldn’t open the door. They eventually did get the door to open but then couldn’t get it to reliably open/close/ lock. Randy assisted for over an hour last night in finding a temporary solution to getting their door/lock functional until they can get the issue fixed. The site is jinxed – avoid it!)
In Green River we spent time at the John Wesley Powell River History Museum. Powell was a one-armed former civil war officer who led an expedition along the Green and Colorado Rivers in 1869. The Colorado River area was the last unexplored area in the US and maps designated it as such.
Powell’s first expedition had boat and rapids challenges and lost much of their provisions. Three members left and were killed by Paiute Indians. The expedition became one of survival (Mormon settlers assisted them with food) but they eventually became the first to traverse the Grand Canyon by boat.
Powell later led a second expedition that focused on scientific, photographic and mapping goals. Many of the canyons and landmarks along the Green and Colorado Rivers still bear the names given to them by Powell’s expeditions. In reverse, modern day Lake Powell was named for him.
The terrific movie at the museum, Journey Into The Great Unknown, inspired us to float the Grand Canyon too! Let’s add some Utah-Arizona intrigue to the mix….