Sunday, June 27, 2021

Auto-touring around Red Feather Lakes and nearby Dowdy Lake

( A word about the Blogger issue regarding the header photo, they broke their widget and the pic doesn't display properly, so I'm removing it for now. Don't mess with your header is the lesson to be learned here. ) 😞

The other day was sunny and perfect for an auto-tour of the Red Feather Lakes area, which is almost directly north of us by about 12 miles. First off though we wanted to head north then west on county road 86 aka Deadmans see how far we could go, just scouting it out.  Eventually, we hit the dreaded "Road Closed" sign and after having noticed quite a bit of logging (beetle kill or maybe fire damage) going on in the area wondered if it was closed for logging vis-a-vis for weather-related conditions. At any rate, we stopped for a leg-stretcher and look-about and spotted this huge, rather stately but unhealthy aspen/birch (?).

These limbs look so artistic looking up
through them at the blue, blue sky.

While we were stopped an older, local gentleman hiker stopped to chat with us about the area, the fire last year and how people, especially tourists, just were not familiar with proper woodsman behaviors, unfortunately.  It is speculated that the fire originated from the Chambers Lake Campground area. An untended campfire on a breezy day can wreak havoc.

Well, after this interlude, we headed out to find a suitable picnic spot and ended up in the Dowdy Lake Campground, east of Red Feather Lakes. What a fabulous spot, and really just a few miles from our site.  A lovely lake, and lots of wildflowers made a perfect backdrop for lunch.

Dowdy Lake Day Use Picnic area even
has a walking path along side of it.

Mostly yellows and purples this month,
but definitely in profusion.

After leaving there, we came back down towards Rustic via 68C, or what we call the Shambala Road. It runs northeast to southwest past the Shambala Mountain Center, a Meditation and Buddhist Retreat with a lovely and peaceful Stupa onsite.  They had some damage to some of their out-buildings/tents but the Stupa itself was unharmed by the fire.

Photo courtesy of the Denver Post

Along the way we saw lots of beautiful scenery, plus the inevitable fire damage.

Talk about a meadow! WOW!

Twin peaks, lol

A bit of snow left on the mountaintops

Looks like a meditation rock in the pond - how serene

Fire damage, it's going to take a while 😢

And finally a shot of the horses grazing just down the road from us. 

Well, thanks for stopping by for a visit, and I hope you enjoyed it!

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Buttoned-up in FL and out in Colorado - yay!

We got all buttoned-up in FL; clothes and food packed-up to take, fridge/freezer cleared out and cleaned, sheets changed and laundry handled, patio furniture and grill brought inside, hurricane shutters down all around plus a myriad of other small tasks completed and now it's time to blast off for the summer in Colorado.

This is an exciting treat for us, as last summer, due to covid uncertainties and the relative remoteness of our RV site, we decided to stay "sheltered at home".  This turned out to be to our advantage as the 2020 Cameron Peak Fire (200,000+ acres) caused a great deal of drama and destruction right here in the Poudre Canyon and Red Feather Lakes area, as well as down towards Estes Park.  Evacuations were mandatory, and people here were out for 5 weeks or more. Whew - so sad, but we're glad we missed it.

Our plan this season is to hurry out to Colorado, and to be more self-sufficient by bringing more paperbacks, puzzles and other amusements, and using more canned goods in conjunction with fresh foods etc. to extend the time interval between trips to town's crowded grocery stores.  Within 3 days (averaged out to about 600 miles/day) we were out here and starting to get unloaded, settled and set-up.

Still dressed in Florida regalia, the Boss gets his grill on, baby backs!

The little scrap of yard and garden that accompanies our site was loaded with dandelions, and I mean loaded! Those took a while to clear out, and fresh flowers for the garden weren't real high on the priority list when we had other items to get first, but finally we look neat and tidy.

First we needed to get rid of the park-provided, somewhat swaybacked picnic table in favor of a smaller and nicer table and chair setup, and we wanted a large storage cabinet for the site as well.

I love this time of year as the wild flowers change often and every month something else is in bloom. Right now it is the time for columbines - so pretty, all different color combinations.

Good catch - there aren't just columbines in this collage!

The river is in full spate and giving kayakers and rafters trouble in spots. When you stand next to it the cool breeze (from snow melt) it generates is refreshing.

Cache la Poudre River

Took a small but steep "introductory" hike (I'm out of shape!) up the canyon right on the other side of the road from our RV resort and it was easy to see the fire damage on the hills of both sides of the canyon.

The hills on the other side of the river to the far right
in this pic took a big hit.  The firefighters stayed at
Glen Echo while battling the blaze and kept the 
building and RV's nearest the river wet with river
water for protection against embers and sparks.

The Boss looks west up the canyon at the burn scar.
The daisies were incredible on this hike!

Shot of the sprinklers protecting the waterfront cabins in our park.