November is sneaking up on us and you would never know it. We still have a lot of trees that are just now beginning to turn color here in the city. We were up in the Puma Hills last weekend on a camping trip with my Mom and while there were still some beautiful patches of golden aspens, the bulk of them had pretty bare limbs. It’s a touch late in the season for most people to camp in the mountains. However, my Mom was here for her first visit with Great Grandson and Josh’s birthday in Pueblo. To make travel simpler to Pueblo, we rented a RV from a local place here in Denver and an opportunity for a scenic return trip home presented itself. It would be Mom’s first Colorado camping experience! We loaded the RV and headed south on the beginning of this adventure. We took a short rest break at the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs and then on to Josh & Selenda’s home in Pueblo.
We had a good time chatting over dinner that evening and breakfast the next morning catching up on events in everyone’s life. After that it was out to see and feed the horses. Josh and Selenda own three horses at the moment and Mom really enjoys their beauty.
I also got an opportunity to drive Josh’s race simulator, whoo hoo! That was great! Thanks for taking the time away from your studies to share it with me.
Getting back on the road again, we headed west towards the mountains and got to Canon City right about lunchtime. We stopped at the Holy Cross Abbey and fixed lunch in their parking lot. The Abbey is beautiful and someday I would like to get inside for a look-see. After lunch, we headed up into the mountains and wound our way up Hwy 9 to Hartsel. Doubling back a short distance east on Hwy 24, up and over Wilkerson Pass; then north into the Pike National Forest to our campsite. The last mile was the killer for Mom with a nasty washboard road but she toughed it out and we arrived safely.
The campsite was one that Rhonda and I had used a year or so ago. It sits up on top of a small hill and affords wonderful views in all directions. I wasn’t sure if I could get the RV up the windy forest road and into the campsite as the RV was pretty long (30-footer) but I took it REAL easy. With Rhonda guiding me, it went fine and we soon were making “camp”. Making camp has a different connotation with a 30 ft RV than it does with our Jeep and tent! We knew we had missed the full moon by a few days but were still anticipating watching it rise over the mountains in the east. It got completely dark before moonrise and we were treated to an amazing display of the Milky Way which can only be appreciated away from the light pollution of the cities. Mom laid down on the ground so she could look up and see it in all its glory. Quite a sight to behold! Shortly thereafter, the moon rose over the horizon and bathed the landscape with moonshine and the darkness was transformed. To take the chill off, we spent the rest of the evening chatting around the campfire and finally went into the RV for a restful nights sleep without the noises of the city.
The sky was magnificent at dawn. I could see it just fine out the window but Rhonda and Mom got dressed and went outside to get the full effect and watch the sun rise. We spent the rest of the morning just sitting around soaking up the sunshine, admiring the scenery, and watching the wildlife. We actually had a pair Bluebirds stop by the campsite for awhile on their late migration south! A real delight for us all. By noon, the winds had started blowing a bit too much for our comfort. We packed up and headed the RV back towards civilization. Along the way we made a small detour alongside the South Platte River where it first comes down out of the mountains at Eleven Mile Canyon. Mom got the opportunity to take her shoes off and walk out into the cold stream. It was a milestone moment! A quick tea/coffee/snack break at the charming tea house in Florissant and we were back in Denver for dinner! Whew! Lots of milestones in this weekend!