Forget the Snow – Heading West
Three Mistakes and A Smart Move
Day 5 Log for March 31, 2005:
Colorado Springs, CO – Grand Junction, CO
We got up early (ok I woke up early and played on the computer for an hour before shutting it down because of low power.) We then started moving around and Sasha went out to the campground bathrooms; when he came back in, he told me that when we had hooked up the power last night, the plug was loose and that was why we did not have any electrical power last night. So we plugged in the laptop and cell phones to charge them up.
Last night was COLD so we had the heat up high, thereby making us wonder how much propane we had available. We realized that we need a blanket at least to keep us warmer. Sasha first used the kitchen to boil water and made me hot chocolate and he had coffee. Then it was my turn at the kitchen, to make hot oatmeal for breakfast. We had gotten a covered pot yesterday so I washed it and used it for breakfast. I have to remember that the sink is not as large as ours at home as I splashed our blanket on the bed. But making breakfast was pretty easy and before long, we were eating.
We had decided before breakfast that we were going to stay at the campground for another day. But when Sasha had powered up the computer, he checked the weather for Colorado Springs vs. Grand Junction and found Grand Junction was 50 F today, almost 30 degrees warmer than where we were. And it was supposed to go to 7 F this evening at Colorado Springs. That helped decide it for us. [Future Laura – This mistake may not be as readily apparent and most RVers, like other travelers make it too. Our Rig has wheels, and we do not have to be in a place that is uncomfortable. So why not go someplace else? Thinking we can or cannot could be a mistake.]
Bed Bath and Beyond Saves Us!
We started moving quicker and got on the road by 12:45 pm to go to Bed, Bath & Beyond, (using the internet, my computer and the GPS system I was able to figure out which store was the closest) where we got fleece blanket, a down comforter (for inside the duvet), a mixing spoon (I used a plastic spoon for mixing the oatmeal, which slightly melted as I was cooking, oops!), and a soap dish for when we go to campgrounds and I need to bring in my soap. The things you learn while camping!
[Future Laura – When you check the weather that day, do your plans change or do you stick with what you planned? Please comment below]
The Log of Day 5 Cont.
Starting off our first Camper Adventure!
Got lunch at Chipotle, a Mexican restaurant similar to Baja Fresh but with bigger proportions. Then we headed out to Grand Junction at 2 pm.
We went through many different ecosystems and environments. Just going across the state of Colorado we saw more and took more pictures than going from Sterling, Virginia to eastern Colorado. It is a wonderful state and I figure we will be coming here more often. These were all taken March 31st.
Gallery of Colorado Pictures
Pictures are when we go out of Colorado Springs on the way to Grand Junction. As you can see, very dark skies and there was snow falling.
Normally, I would not put this picture in, however, I am not a spice person like my husband and he wanted to have burritos from Chipotle, like I talked about above. The burrito is huge even in this picture, where I have reduced the size down to 14%. I told him that this was the last burrito for me on this trip!
Wilkerson Pass at an elevation 9507 at 333 pm 22 F took picture as we were checking out the plains area. We took a bunch of pictures before this, but there is such the contrast, we were in the mountains with snow swirling around us and now we are down in the plains (high plains at 8909 elevation) and now snow, slightly sunny conditions.
Amazing – we actually have a bar, but internet access goes in and out through this area. I guess most people do ranching around here, and do things with tourists, because I cannot see what else would be done around here. We are on Route 24, and it is a little windy. We keep having to put on the sunglasses and then take them off as it is partly cloudy but very bright.
Laura’s Pictures Show Her Cold
I’m a little cold on the way to the continental divide. Unbelievable, we have several bars for the internet and I am on Cellular One for my cell phone and Sasha’s phone (Sprint) has no service.
28 F, elevation 8900 ft ASL, around 4 pm. We are starting to go up in elevation bit more now. Just saw our first Bison on this trip but it was too far away for a picture. Supposedly Bison meat is great to eat because it is leaner but still good but I don t know for sure. Most of the area that we are going through does not have any homes or trailers, just lots of land.
Most excellent mountains all visible from the road.
Starting to snow again, looks like we are going right into a serious snow area, lights on safety (fogs too!)
Went through the town of Leadville, hit an elevation of 10,000 ft ASL. 22 F at 516 pm. Very historical little town with Victorian buildings and almost dirt roads. Victorian and Gregorian buildings very quaint, with mining museum. First sign of something urban – Family Dollar and Safeway. Took pic of interesting sign.
Continental Divide – Still Winter Here
Coming on now to the continental divide: it is 534 pm, at an elevation of 10,428 ft ASL. Temp: 19 F. No bars. Cold and windy, we took a picture or two with the sign. The continental divide is pretty cool anyway, one side the rivers flow to the west, and the other side rivers flow to the east. I do not believe that there is any river on the continental divide, as it would get totally confused.
There is blue skies to the east and clouds (probably snow too) to the west, north and south. Ski Cooper, a national forest and ski area is right here as well. We also just saw a transit bus go by.
We are back to snow at 5:50pm. And then out it. Only blue skies ahead, Baby! We went past a mountain that Sasha had skied on. We are now on I-70 at 6:18pm.
Notice the blue skies ahead! That is where we are headed.Towards Grand Junction.
One of Our Favorite [For Now] Campgrounds
We got to the Monument RV Park that we are staying at, the owners are not in the office (it is 10 pm, understandable,) and they have a deposit window. The place is beautiful, even at night.
We are near the Colorado River, but also close to town, and the Shower and bathroom are fabulous. You don’t think of these things when you are traveling in hotels and motels, but you REALLY do think of it when you are camping. The showers look beautiful; we will see how they work tomorrow. Sasha got the camper set up while I put down the deposit and reserved our space. I was exhausted, even though we did not exercise or do any physical activity, but we went up and down in elevation (we are now at 4400 ft ASL) and Sasha says that he has a headache from the elevation.
I think I am tired from the taking off and putting on so many layers of clothing and fighting against the wind when we were walking around to get stuff who knows, but I m sure I will be rested for tomorrow’s adventures.