Monday, August 16, 2010

Roxie Mountain High: Day 2

The drive from Manitou Springs to our campground outside of Cripple Creek was beautiful. I think it's about 35 miles, but it's sort of twisty. As Bick said, it would be fabulous to take it in a ram-air TA, complete with T-tops - but I think he may be living back in the 80's :-)

Our campground was beautiful and pretty much deserted. Cripple Creek has changed a lot in the twenty years plus since either of us had been there. Bick was last there in August of 1988, and I was last there in August of 1989. Legalized gambling was voted into CC in 1990 and so the nature of the place has changed a bit.

We got camp set up pretty quickly and set out to do absolutely nothing. It was at this point that I decided that I was really fine without Cha-Cha. At this elevation on the western slope, everything is either uphill or down. We did well to find a level-ish spot to pitch the tent.

We headed back into CC to see the sights and enjoy charming old gold mining town that we'd both remembered from a couple of decades prior. While the buildings were still there, nothing except casinos, old and new existed. The old train (which we rode) doesn't even go into Victor anymore. I can't blame that on gambling - that's a function of the modern gold mining that is still going on. That's a story for another day. Anyway, we did hop the narrow gauge train to see the sights and it was fun and interesting. The narrator/conductor appeared quite proud of and knowledgeable about the town. Oh, and fun trivia fact: the doctor upon whom the Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman character was based practiced in and was buried in CC.

It was about time for dinner, and so we headed back to camp.

And then the storm clouds began to gather.

The temperature dropped by twenty plus degrees.

Bick and I got to spend the remainder of the rain shower in the tent. The rain did stop and we were able to resume dinner prep. We were cooking using the Coleman stove, the Weber Q grill and the coals from the fireplace. We are nothing if not simple!

It got pretty cold at night. We had two sleeping bags zipped together on top of the air mattress (we forgot our pillows at the seedy motel the first night in CO) topped by two other sleeping bags. I was wearing sweat pants, socks and a fleece sweater. I stayed warm enough! Thank goodness.

But even with the rain and the gambling and the cold, I LOVED camping. We sort of hiked (it was STEEP) around the camp a bit and just enjoyed the out-of-doors. I cannot wait to go again!

ETA: The tent didn't leak - we were just wet from doing the stash and dash go get our stuff stowed before the rain hit! We borrowed Pebbles and Slater's tent and she was horrified to think it had leaked. It stayed snug and tight.

Day Three: Whitewater Rafting - Or this ain't no float trip!

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Get outside.



  1. Love, love the pictures! Pretty scenery up there in Colorado.
    Hard to imagine any place in the US being cold at this time of year...isn't it just like a man to go to sleep and leave us hanging during a storm...
    You were missed and thanks for sharing your vacation with us can't wait to read more!

  2. Camping is great fun, just as long as you have the proper equipment. Without it, camping loses its quite quickly :)

  3. So, I'm reading this and I can feel how much fun you had yet at the same time I'm thinking, "I am SO GLAD that isn't me on this trip!" I have to disagree with Mark. Camping is not fun, even with the right equipment.

  4. Welcome back you happy wanderer! Sounds like you had a wonderful time. The pictures are gorgeous, such a great place to be camping for a week! I can smell the bacon sizzling for breakfast from here.

  5. Cute name for your vacation posts. Looks like so much. Make me home sick for the mountians of Utah where I grew up. Looking forward to day 3.

  6. How nice that it was so cold...hope the memory of that stays with you through this awful August of 100 degree plus temps!

    What a great area to camp - looks so peaceful! Too bad the town has changed so much - progress, right?

    Loving these recaps!

  7. Beautiful scenery! Glad you enjoyed it.

    The PNW has been cool for the most part. The observatory is at 6200 feet, so I usually end up with winter gear on - mittens and a down vest and a hat. No thermals this time of year. In a few weeks I'll probably have to put them back on.

  8. Great story, great photos too. Hope you're having a wondrous time.

  9. Sounds like you two had a great time! I would love to try camping somewhere besides TX. It's always so hot/humid and every time I've ever's rained.

    Pictures are awesome. You look like a real hiker to me :)

    Love the title - Roxie Mountain High!


We'll try this for a while.