It was a good travel day-cloud cover, good roads, reasonably priced fuel ($3.69), light traffic, varied scenery, manageable winds and best of all, the arrival at La Vista Campground. Above Rye Colorado, there is a small lake, Lake Isabel. We have not explored this part of Colorado a lot and never have been up here. We had a hard time finding a place not far from I 25 that was wooded, secluded, and without a burn ban. These three campgrounds fit the bill. We were told they really werenâ€™t open for the season yet and we would probably have it to ourselves. We were thrilled! After living with so many people in and out for 4 months next to us, we were ready to be in the woods. If we could have found a place to dry camp we would have but the rangers said it wasnâ€™t recommended in this area.
We pulled through Rye with a quick grocery stop. Then the ascent began, up and up a curvy mountain road about 8 miles. The views were tantalizing for sure! We pulled into the campground and almost all the sites were FULL! We were SO disappointed! There were only 2 or 3 open sites. We got out and walked the campground to decide which one to take. The Area Supervisor was around and we asked about camping, she said most people were pulling out as there was â€˜weather comingâ€™. I love when people say that in Colorado. â€œWe have weather comingâ€. Ha! Just say it, there is going to be SNOW!!
We wanted a site that would be blocked form the wind as it was supposed to be howling at 20-30 MPH when the storm hit in the morning. We agreed on site #11. Close to the potty but nicely treed for protection. People were starting to pack up and slowly everyone left but us and the area attendant.
We got set up and I started to have symptoms of altitude sickness. Matt says it was altitude adjustment but I was feeling pretty poorly. We both went into wellness mode and started BTalk as well as several other things. I began to feel better which is good as the only supposed real cure for altitude sickness is to go down. We werenâ€™t going down. I did those things through the night and felt good enough to take a walk to the lake in the AM. By the time we got back around 10.30, it was starting to snow. Sundays forecast was for rain changing to snow over night but it started to snow and has not stopped as I write this on Monday eve, it is still snowing. We have had over 9 inches at last measure several hours ago when we pulled the Rangers assistant out of the ditch. Go Clifford!! He didnâ€™t even have to work at all!
We are very thankful the wind never developed! Never! It has been like living in a snow globe with our big windows. The snow falls very leisurely over the small flat area next to us and the treed ravine behind. This is Bambiâ€™s playground. We have had deer around us since we arrived and everyone left. Some come and graze as close as 8 feet or so to our trailer. There have been varying numbers, as many as 12-15. The birds have been a treat and come to the aspen within a few feet of us. Many species are unknown to us and we have had to them look up to identify them. One I still have not identified yet. We get up close shots but birds are hard to get good pictures of. Mattâ€™s better than I am.
We also went sledding today. No snowshoeing yet as the altitude is still a bit much occasionally. We will go in the AM. We took Cliffordâ€™s windshield protector sunshade and used it as a sled. Yes, it was Mattâ€™s idea! That was a blast! Abby got in on it too and became an obstacle to dodge. There are great hills here and we took turns making trail then sliding them. The smiles in the pictures show how much fun it was. The snow is perfect for it. We are snuggled up in the trailer now with bellies full of hot chocolate, Visalus style, and both writing away. Mid Afternoon we were joined by another camper. HA! Two guys from Colorado Springs who had planned this trip 2-3 weeks ago and were not going to be thwarted, even by a snowstorm. We looked up as their trailer went by the window! In this snow! Amazing! They met us later at the â€œRanger rescueâ€ and said, you must be as crazy as us! We are. And the reward is unparalleled beauty in the making as only the Lord can make it. We are off the grid until Friday. We will go to town one day and post this but other than that, we are vacationing in the mountains, writing, formulating, focusing and enjoying each other. We hope you are having a day with someone you love too.