White River National Forest, Colorado

Monday, August 1 (continued)

My plan to wait out the weekend at Clear Creek Reservoir so that we could enjoy a quiet camp during the week doesn’t “pan out,” as the prospectors say.  The commotion from nearby party-people forces me to move the Best Little Trailer to another part of the camping area for the night.

Ahh . . . Peace at last!  We will hit the road first thing in the morning!

Tuesday, August 2

The crew and I leave Clear Creek dispersed camping area shortly after breakfast.  Route 24 takes us north to Leadville.

P1130232Leadville, Colorado, where summer temperatures rarely reach 80 degrees!

To tell the truth, I don’t give much thought to altitude this morning until I see the message in the next photo.

Wow!  We’re really high this morning!

P1130234-001

Bridget, Reggie, and I aren’t feeling any ill-effects.

We breeze up and over Tennessee Pass (10,424 feet). In fact, Bridget and Reggie nap right through it.

I must say that today’s drive turns out to be one of the most enjoyable we’ve experienced in our five years on the road.

What incredibly beautiful country!

I wish I had photos of the views from Route 24 north through Red Cliff to Minturn.  It just  isn’t the kind of road where one can safely pull over to take photos.

I admit I got into a serene “zone,” drifting along around bend after bend, awed by the mountains, valleys, streams, and canyons, and it was nice not having that mood interrupted to take photos.

A few miles beyond the pass, the forest opens up to reveal a lush, green valley.

P1130236Eagle River Valley

I pull over and park the Perfect Tow Vehicle.

“Ready for a break, crew?”

Silly question. 

Bridget and Reggie scramble to the ground and take off.

“Daisies!  Look at all the daisies . . . . “

P1130240

If you look on a map, this pond is near the group campground, “East Fork,” a few miles north of Tennessee Pass.

P1130239

A guy at the fishing pier practices casting with his fly rod.

P1130246An instructor trots between him and two other people.

P1130244My boondocking sense tells me there are several really great sites along the roads leading off Route 24 in this area of White River National Forest.

Gee, I’d love to camp here.  I doubt there’s internet signal though.

Oh, a beaver lodge!  I haven’t seen one of those in ages!

P1130245

“Okay, little guy.  We need to go now.  C’mon, Bridge. We have miles to go before we sleep. . . .  Well, at least I do.”

P1130241When we return to the Perfect Tow Vehicle, I turn on the Verizon jetpack. 

Nothing.  No signal at all. 

If I weren’t so far behind on the blog . . . sheesh . . . I could find a camp around here and we could stay for one night.  Oh, well . . . .

P1130249

We continue northward.

P1130256

North of Minturn we board Interstate 70 east.

What a shock to go from pristine forest, mountains, and valley to the pressured speed of an interstate and the houses, condos, shopping centers, and hustle and bustle of Vail.  The steep mountainsides are striped with ski runs.  I shudder at the thought of careening down that!

I’m very happy when the sign appears for Exit 180, east of Vail.

A short drive and we pull into the campground!

P1130259Gore Creek is big on reservations. 

We don’t have one, of course.  Post after post has a “reserved” ticket on it.  I find one that is reserved but has a note on it “Open one night only.”

It’s a tricky back-in that goes up with a slight turn mid-way.  I commence backing in when a man runs toward the PTV out of the neighboring site.  He has a concerned look on his face and his arm is raised to flag me.

“I’ll help you!” he calls out.

“No, no, that’s okay.  I do better by myself.  Really.  Thank you anyway!”

P1130277-001

I write a check for $8.50, the senior discount rate.  Regular price is $17.00.  No hook-ups, but there’s internet signal!

Later, the crew and I climb down the bank to walk along Gore Creek.

P1130261Gosh, we had a full day today! 

That drive from Leadville to Minturn on Route 24 is a highlight of our exploration of Colorado.  I’ll never forget that deep canyon with a river at the bottom and the mountains soaring high as the road curved around the rock face . . . .

I faced a challenge . . . Tennessee Pass . . . . We didn’t have any trouble . . . .  I feel good about that. 

It’s been a wonderful day. . . . I couldn’t have imagined such a day as this . . .

And now we’re here . . . .

P1130260

rvsue

NOTE:  This post has been edited. 

After publishing this post and responding to several comments last night, I turned off the computer and went to bed.  As I lie in bed, I reflected upon the post.  That’s when it hit me.

Oh, no!  I goofed up!

Those of you who opened up this post when it first appeared will recall reading about Vail Pass.  This morning I removed that segment of the story.  I will insert it in the next post.

You see, it’s physically impossible for me (or anyone) to drive east of Vail on I-70, go through Vail Pass, and, continuing eastward, reach Gore Creek Campground.  One comes to the campground BEFORE the pass.  Apparently my memory melded two days into one!  Amazing!

What a mind, eh?

I apologize for the confusion.  In the next post we will travel through Vail Pass and, wouldn’t you know, that same white SUV will box us in again!  — Sue

THANK YOU FOR SHOPPING AMAZON FROM MY BLOG!

P1130278Our campsite at Gore Creek Campground, East Vail, Colorado

CLICK LINK TO SHOP AMAZON NOW!

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135 Responses to White River National Forest, Colorado

  1. I gasped when I saw you were so worried about not posting recently that you didn’t stay at such a magnificent place! I’m so happy you were rewarded with this one–WITH internet!!!

    And I’m doubly-happy that you are enjoying Colorado so much.

    Thank you for taking us with you!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      YAY, KISSTAB-CHICK! Third place!

      It was tough driving out of that part of White River National Forest. So peaceful there and I could see someone’s tent, looking toward the mountains, beyond the pond. That road probably had some super boondocks along it.

      Thank you for being happy for us. That’s sweet.

  2. Bruce Johnston says:

    Hi-I’m new. Love your posts.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Welcome, Bruce! I never tire of reading that someone loves my posts. Thanks for the pat on the back!

      Oh, I almost missed this — CONGRATULATIONS! YOU TIED THIRD PLACE!

  3. Marilyn Moore says:

    Love the line “Come on Baby.” Yeppers Sue N Crew.

  4. Gail from Buckeye AZ says:

    Another Post Yippy! Just made my evening!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Gail,

      I was in a funk today. Just couldn’t get a post going. Your reaction makes the struggle worthwhile. 🙂

  5. Lee J in northern California says:

    What an amazing place…..breathtaking

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      It is, Lee J. I’ve heard people go on and on about how beautiful Colorado is. Now I know.

  6. Pat H....now at Newport, Oregon says:

    Colorado is a beautiful state. Pics are great!!!! Enjoy!!!!

  7. Ya…Rusty has some fast fingers ;)! Went back to read your post. OM…!! What beautiful photos!!!
    That is some altitude… you and the crew have adapted well…Your new camp is lovely…as usual…enjoy dear lady 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Betty-Shea. Isn’t it something, the way we’ve adapted? I was a little discouraged a while back, wondering if we could “do” Colorado with all her mountain passes.

      I wanted to take a photo of the sign at each summit, where it names the pass with the elevation, but every time we get up there, I’m so thrilled I don’t want to stop!

  8. Alice (So. Fla) says:

    three?? beautiful country, thanks for the pics, glad you and the kids are doing well

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Alice… and thank you. All three of us are great!

      I’m especially thankful that it’s been a long time since Bridget has woke up with a muscle spasm in her back leg. It would be nice if she never had another one.

  9. Cinandjules (NY) says:

    OH my gawd! Once again your ability to find the perfect site is truly amazing!

    The neighbor man running out ….. gave me a chuckle!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I thought maybe you’d gone to bed after your comment under the previous post. Yeah, that man took one look at me and raced over. I think I disappointed him when I refused his help. I accepted help at my first-ever camp (and was grateful for it!) and then vowed to handle my rig by myself from that point forward.

      I’m not as amazing as you think… There are loads of “perfect” sites to be found and it’s not difficult at all.

      • Cinandjules (NY) says:

        Oh no we’re night owls! 2am is considered early for us!

        You only become proficient if you do it yourself….rock on desert woman!

  10. Such beautiful country, love the photos of the pups among the daisies. 🙂 Y’all have really gotten acclimated to the altitude too! Yay for the PTV conquering the passes like a champ!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Linda,

      I join you with a big YAY for the PTV. Not only is she pulling us and the BLT over these passes with ease, she hasn’t leaked any more oil while doing it!

      I’m happy you like the photos. Bridget is a little doll in those daisies, her gentle steps between them…

  11. Pookie in Todd Mission, tx says:

    me thinks you and the kids are getting used to the high altitude now…..
    Ive driven up and down that area for a few years and know what you
    are experiencing but always love to see more pictures of it…..
    thanks for posting
    chuck

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, chuck… I hope you are doing well tonight.

      I regret I don’t have photos of that drive to show you, knowing how you enjoy seeing Colorado again. I’m glad you remember it.

      Yep, all three of us are adjusted to the altitude. I still want a nap in the afternoon, which isn’t a hardship. Ha!

  12. Larry in AR says:

    Awesome scenery. Wolf Pass would now be a piece of cake, huh. Just a gentle reminder that with all that strain on the PTV to not forget to check the oil…if you haven’t had it fixed yet. I plan to be in Colorado in about a month. Can’t wait.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good reminder, Larry. Thank you. Yes, I’m checking the oil frequently and plan to do so again tomorrow before we hit the road again.

      Only a month to go to be in Colorado! I hope you will stay long enough to see the autumn colors. I wouldn’t mind taking this same drive again after the leaves change and before the snow arrives.

      Wolf Pass? Heh. Nothing to it. 🙂

      • Larry in AR says:

        The colors? Yes, saw them two years ago and hope to see some again, although I will probably have to come back to reality before the full change. I will be passing right by where you are tonight on my way back. Gore Creek might be an option for an overnight stop. Timing is everything, of course. BTW, I will be going over Wolf Creek Pass on the way out. If I remember correctly, the climb is more gentle going West.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Yes, I heard the same thing about Wolf Pass.

          BTW, we aren’t at Gore Creek right now. Not that it matters. I’m three camps behind reality with this blog.

          If you want to stay overnight at Gore Creek and it’s the height of fall color, make it a short driving day and arrive early. That’s a popular area. I was lucky to find an open site.

  13. Lori says:

    Wow, what a fun read, Glad your trip was amazing! Your photos are incredible.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you for that great compliment, Lori! I like how you describe this post as “fun.” 🙂

  14. Carol S says:

    You drove through town when we were there! We were sitting in the People’s Bank with our kids, making settlement on their first home. A good day! Then, we drove down I-70 to Denver for a concert at Red Rocks Amphitheater … Jerry Garcia’s Birthday Celebration. I was a fun night. We just left Leadville today, Monday Aug 8 … because I just cannot hang with the folks at that altitude. Headaches, dizzy, breathless and terrible sleep because I dream endlessly disturbing dreams! We went through 2 cannisters of the Boost Oxygen (which they sell at the Cycles of life Bike shop, just FYI), but it was all worth it to spend time with our delightful grandbaby. We alao enjoy Boom Days, which was last weekend. If I had seen you, I would have waved!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Carol!

      Wouldn’t it have been funny if you saw your car in one of my photos! Ha! Gee, talk about a full day. I didn’t drive half that far and you went to a concert in Denver and drove back?

      Gee, your altitude sickness sounds really crummy. I had nothing like that. I’m glad you had time with your grandchild, but I’m also glad you left!

  15. Barbara (Nashville) says:

    Lovely photos. No time to read the post or comments, will come back later. Deadlines call.

  16. Jolene/Iowa says:

    Hi Sue,

    It is so beautiful in Colorado, your pictures show it. I have been in some of the areas this post was written about. The last time I was in Colorado for my ex brother in laws funeral, we had a few days we could site see and we were in this area. So very beautiful.

    Those ski runs out that way are crazy. I wouldn’t want to be on them either. Always looking forward to where we are going next. Enjoy each and every day!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Jolene,

      People call parts of Colorado paradise and I’m agreeing with them. I enjoyed that green valley by the pond watching the man perfect his cast with a fly rod. It made the perfect Colorado scene…

  17. Steve from N Ga says:

    My wife and I did I70 past Vail in a blizzard, glad you had better weather! There were semis jackknifed on the climb to the tunnel *shudder*.

  18. Kevin in CO says:

    I have been an interested follower of your path through this fine state. I know all the roads of course, driven most many times, yet I am enjoying following the path you are choosing to take. I would recommend some other ideas, but I would rather follow along as you make your way though. Enjoy and take care.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I appreciate you holding back your ideas, Kevin. I don’t know why but I like making my own routes, even if it means I miss something or don’t choose the best way. Once someone tells me the best route to take or they try to guess where I’ll go, I have an automatic reaction to go another way. So, yes, follow along and I hope you enjoy our travels…

  19. Carla (north Texas) says:

    Oh for some smellovision! Fresh mountain air. Natures air conditioning. Oh my! I need a vacation.

  20. Susan in Dallas says:

    Wow, great photos – just what I needed after another scorcher here. The entire month of August has been in the 100’s. And they are forecasting the same for this week ahead. Your pictures made me think cool thoughts. Any pinecones for HRH?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’m seeing a pattern with Dallas. Every year. Somehow I feel like it’s going to happen again next summer, too. Oh dear… I hope you can stay where it’s cool, Susan.

      No, HRH hasn’t shown any interest in pine cones lately.

  21. Beautiful area! You take such nice photos, Sue.

  22. Al says:

    Oops. I believe that is a beaver lodge, not a beaver dam.

  23. Nancy S. Indiana says:

    Thank you for sharing the beautiful pics of Colorado. I really hope we can visit there soon. I love seeing it through your eyes. Hugs to the crew. ??

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Nancy. I hope you are enjoying this day!

      I also hope you will be in Colorado soon. I think this state was created for campers. 🙂

      Until then (and beyond), thank you for riding along with us. On behalf of the crew, thanks also for the hugs!

  24. Lauri says:

    How ever do you keep such a clear narrative in your head!?!? Your details amaze me! If it was me, I would need to hit the record button every hour – and then transcribe it. Simply amazing! Fun to tag along! Thanks Sue.
    Lauri

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Lauri. Good morning!

      Up until this post, I was doing a pretty good job of remembering what occurred. (See my note that I added to the end of this post.)

      This is why I don’t like getting way behind real time with my posts. The more time that has elapsed, the more difficult it is to recall the details, sequences, and thoughts of that particular day. I do try to keep my stories as close to truth as I can.

      Thanks for the compliments.

  25. Dawn in MI says:

    Looks beautiful. Do people camp in tents there? Or is it bear country?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, Dawn!

      Yes, people camp in tents whether they’re in bear country or not. One thing I’ve noticed about Colorado… lots of young people camping in tents!

      I’m grateful that I have a hard-sided rig for me and the crew. Just imagine what would have taken place if that bear in Ashley National Forest (northern Utah) had found us in a tent, rather than in the BLT. On second thought, don’t imagine that! 🙂

      • Dawn in MI says:

        LOL. I think you had been cooking chicken or something before that bear encounter. Hopefully you wouldn’t have been if you were in a tent. But I agree, hard sides in bear country would make me feel safer!

  26. Mindy Reed says:

    Love it ~ old stompin’ grounds ~ Used to have a T shirt that said “Leadville~Don’t trust anyone below 10,000 feet”

  27. Virginia620 (Mobile AL) says:

    Beautiful looking area. Thanks for the post. Reading a book called “Power in the Blood” based around Leadville & surrounding areas.
    We’re in the dog days with afternoon thunderstorms, high heat & humidity. Miss It? ?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Haha! No, Virginia, I don’t miss the heat and humidity… You know I don’t! Thanks for the laugh and good morning to you!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Virginia… See below where I placed your question to DesertGinger. She’s a “night person” which means she may not reply until late tonight. 🙂

  28. weather says:

    Hi, Sue. I’m glad you were able to have a peaceful night before Tuesday .What a full and amazing day that was. I had to read twice to get that you were only referring to the actual flowers when you wrote the caption ” Daisies! Look at all the daisies…”. Bridget’s beauty and delicate steps made me think you meant her, too 🙂 . It’s wonderful that you, the crew and PTV met the day’s challenges so well, wow! I can see why people would try to save a spot at that campground. To my tastes your site had among the nicest blend of vegetation and it’s placement of any you’ve had before. Thanks for the beautiful post and photos. I hope your move this morning, day and camp that you find are wonderful, too.

    • weather says:

      P. S. I just added a reply on the last post adding our previous conversation .

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, regarding the post and photos.

      By now you probably have read about my error and subsequent editing of this post. Taking care of that, as well as replying to the wonderful comments I see here this morning, have me reconsidering whether to move today. I would like to bring this blog up to the near-present while I have internet, in case our next camp doesn’t have it.

      This summer has been challenging in regards to finding beautiful, mountain camps that also have internet. It’s been worth the extra effort!

      Wishing you, as always, a day of wellness and delights.

      Oh yeah, I wanted to say…. Bridget is a daisy. I like that!

  29. MB from VA says:

    Good morning from VA. Beautiful pictures as always. What an awesome country we get to call home. I am so envious….but not in a bad way. I am happy that you are experiencing days like the one you described in this post. I just long to be out there too.

    The farm on which I live and work has not sold yet but the owner did change realtors. These women seem to be really motivated and know a lot about this type of property. So, I am really hoping….. I could go before it sells but it would be more difficult in several ways. Many more posts like this and I may just opt for “more difficult”. Actually, it’s more about an aging family member…… I have a feeling that you understand about others just “letting you do it because you will” and they just go about their merry way. So let’s change the subject. 🙂

    ANYway…..I am one step closer to the dream……my friend gave me a zero gravity chair “like RVSue’s”! YeeeHaaa! It is sitting in my empty living room just waiting for the day when it will be sitting at our camp. Have a great day! MB, Wyndy, Bella and Sissy

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, MB and crew!

      Your comment touched me… especially the part about the zero gravity chair sitting in your empty living room. I did the same thing! Ha! I’d sit back in the lounger, close my eyes, and pretend I was in a piney forest next to a noisy little brook. It gave me hope and kept the dream real, made it seem attainable.

      How I ached then as I know you ache now for the freedom and peace that comes with choosing where you want to spend your day and being able to go there.

      Yes, I understand your situation. That farm will sell. Your day will come. 🙂

      • MB from VA says:

        Your reply brought tears to my eyes. And yes, I have kicked back in that chair and dreamed. And I wanted to add that though I know everyone who is a regular on this blog loves it and you…..to some of us it is more than a blog. It helps us keep our own dreams alive. When doubts/fears arise….I have said to myself and others on many occasions…….”Well….RVSue does it every day.” 😉 Thank you.

  30. ApplegirlNY says:

    Charming town of Leadville, fly fishing, mountain vistas, streams and lovely campsite. You’ve captured the essence your Rocky Mountain High. Good for you.
    Blessings.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Applegirl… I feel the same way… THIS is Colorado!

      Blessings upon you this day, too….

  31. PShorten says:

    Hi Sue,
    Long time reader that doesn’t comment often… quick question, when you pull in for one night like that do you unhook from the truck? Do you put down the back stabilizers? Guess I’m asking how much set-up you do. We drag a Casita with us but haven’t done just a one-nighter, yet.
    Thanks, Pat

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, Pat,

      No, I don’t unhitch when staying only one night. In fact, I rarely unhitch the first day at a camp that is new to us. Even though I’m planning to stay at that camp for more than one day, I’ve learned that sometimes things occur or I discover something that makes me want to leave the next morning. The second day, if everything is good, I unhitch.

      There have been times I’ve kept the BLT hooked to the PTV for a couple of days, simply because I knew it would be a short stay with no driving away from camp.

      Of course, in the situations above, the BLT needs to be parked so she’s fairly level front to back.

      I don’t use the back stabilizers any more.

  32. rvsueandcrew says:

    GOOD MORNING, BLOGORINOS!

    I hope y’all rested well and are eager for this new day.

    Scroll up to see a note I added this morning about an error in this post. Oops!

    Sue

  33. Looks like I missed the original version so will see everything in proper order – and learn about the white SUV! Wonderful daisies, they’re so light and happy 🙂 I always cringe when a park has an escort that insists on backing me in. Bill and I have a system that gets us set up in one shot every time. At least your friendly camper listened to you! I’m hoping I can get acclimated to the higher elevations next time we’re in the Rockies, we so want to spend a couple months in those beautiful, cool forests.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, Jodee!

      Those daisies brought me back to childhood in upstate New York. I’ve always associated daisies with the month of June. Therefore it was a happy surprise to find so many of them in the first week of August. Of course, daisies don’t grow according to a calendar! Doh.

      I know what you mean about RV park “escorts.” I cringe, too, so I remind myself that they do that to protect their property from people bashing into things. I guess I never should say never because I do let RV park employees “help” me back in. All other times, NO! I believe accepting help chips away at one’s confidence in the task.

      You’ll probably adjust to the altitude. It may take more or less time than we required. I wish I could say that the Boost oxygen makes a big difference. I have no way of knowing if it does. Maybe it’s only psychological… At any rate, I’m glad I have it.

  34. Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

    Hi Sue and Crew! I love the photo of “We Leadville. Great Living at 10,200′” mainly because it shows the PTV and BLT in your side mirror.

    Strange that the altitude didn’t bother you or Bridget. I wonder if she was relaxed because you were due to be acclimated or if she too was acclimated. Hmmm.

    The rock structure in the photo below “We continue Northward . . . “, is amazing! I can almost see faces in it.

    Looking forward to reading about the “same white SUV” boxing you in. I guess my memory is not serving me well as I don’t remember it.

    Anyway, take care and enjoy the travels.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, Renee!

      Bridget slept right through Tennessee Pass. So did Reg. Since this post we’ve gone through another pass and again, no problem! I think we’re acclimated. 🙂

      The part about the “same white SUV” was removed from this post, probably before you had a chance to read about it. It will appear in the next post which will tell about the next day when it really happened.

  35. Kathie says:

    When you were in northern Arizona a few years back, I posted how enlightening it was to see the state where I grew up in someone else’s eyes. Now you are only a few miles from where I have lived for over 40 years, and through your words and pictures, reminded me how lucky I am. (Though to be honest, it’s hard to not be overwhelmed with the wonder of the Colorado Rocky Mountains.) I so love it here and am delighted that you are enjoying your visit.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, Kathie!

      While your entire comment is engaging, I’m struck by your statement, “I so love it here . . . . ”

      How wonder for you to live for 40 years in a place that you love! What a gift! I’m very happy for you.

      Thank you for your message to me today. I remember your comment about seeing Arizona through my words and photos. 🙂

  36. Pauline in Mississippi says:

    What beautiful country!! The pictures are so pretty…love the daisies. I especially loved the pictures of Gore Creek. I bet it is relaxing sitting next to that. Everything looks so green and healthy. So glad the altitude didn’t effect you and the crew…you were really high up!!
    Looking forward to the next post!!
    Love to you and the crew.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Love to you and all the family, Pauline. I hope everyone is well, happy, and enjoying summertime. I think of each of you often!

      Too bad I couldn’t include the sound of Gore Creek along with the photos. It’s a “sound massage,” very soothing….

      Such a pretty creek with a not-so-pretty name!

  37. rvsueandcrew says:

    Note to DesertGinger:

    Virginia asked you this under the previous post:

    “Did you fly or Drive? If you flew, I’m curious how you handled the oxygen issue? My hubby is on oxygen 24/7 and we want to take a trip to AZ but really haven’t done any investigating of the O2/flying issues. TIA”

    I copied and pasted Virginia’s question here in hopes you will answer here. This question may be of interest to several readers and it would be a shame for them to miss your reply. Thank you, Ginger.

    Blogorinos: Since this topic has been raised, have you traveled with oxygen tanks? How did you handle it?

  38. Dawn in NC says:

    Thanks so much for the updates Sue! It brightens my day every time.

  39. Julie E from CO says:

    Hi Sue! Isn’t it pretty here? I’m loving your pictures.

    We’re in the middle of having our backyard landscaping done. We’re also done camping for the year I think 🙁 Someone was mowing the outlot next to our property and a rock flew up and lodged itself into the side of our camper (it’s fiberglass). So now it’s sitting at the RV body shop waiting to be fixed. Since there’s been a lot of hail this year, there’s a long wait to have body work done. I suppose we could still use the camper with the rock lodged in there, but we didn’t want to risk further damage. Thankfully, our HOA is going to pick up the bill since the outlot mowing is their deal. So, I will live vicariously through you!

    Also, you may know this already, but if you plan to continue on west on I-70, there are CDOT rest stops with free water (potable and unpotable), and free dump stations. They’re easy to get to right off I-70, and located in Edwards, Rifle, and Fruita.

    • Julie E from CO says:

      Whoops and just realized you’re headed east, not west. Oh well, the rest stops are still good to know about!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Gee, sorry to hear that happened to your trailer, Julie. At least you don’t have to pay for the repair…

      Good info on the rest stops! I bet there are readers who will benefit from you posting it. I probably will, too, if not soon, eventually.

  40. Linda in Manito Illinois says:

    I so loved this post with the beautiful pictures. Makes me miss this part of Colorado so badly. We were in Colorado Springs in 2013 for a Veteran’s Reunion, but in 1997 we traveled the area where you are now. So, so beautiful.
    Thank you for the great memories!
    Linda

  41. Geri says:

    Wonderful photographs Sue! Makes me wish I had taken the time to explore more of Colorado than I did! Such amazing scenery in this post and last. I am so happy that you have conquered your fear of high mountain passes, I never did! I mean, I drove them and when with Chuck I rode through them but I was never happy with high altitudes and steep roads. The daisies were such a treat! Bridget really seems to be slimming down! Remember Cadillac Ranch in Bluff Utah? They are looking for a camp host there, I will write more about it and post it in your next blog! I’ll have more info then, but i thought I would do a heads up for anybody who might be interested!
    Belly rubs for Bridget and Reggie and hugs to you Sue for a great blog!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Geri,

      Sure, I remember Cadillac Ranch. I’ll be happy to post the information. Being that it’s located in Bluff, UT, near to the national parks, I would bet they’ll be able to find someone for the position.

      Yes, good idea to wait until the next post. Maybe you’ll be able to put it closer to the top of comments. If not, I’ll find a way to draw attention to it. I know you are fond of Cadillac Ranch and the people there.

      Hope you, Chuck, Doogie Bowser and Radar are all feeling good and enjoying life. Stay off hellish roads, ya’ hear? 🙂

    • Fuji-maru says:

      Hi, Geri,
      Replying from Japan.
      I stayed just one night at the Cadillac Ranch in Bluff, Utah on the way to the Arches Nat’l Park 3 years ago. Because its representation that had been written by RVSue in her post at that time, has left me a great impression. Incidently, sure Mr. and Mrs. Owner were amiable. I asked them whether or not they remember about RVSue. Of course, their answer was “Absolutely Yes”.

      Fuji-maru

  42. FloridaScott says:

    Hi Sue & Crew!,

    I have so enjoyed your travels this summer, especially Colorado. I have so many fond memories of Colorado and have been fortunate to visit several times over the years. Thank you for bringing back all those memories.

    Back in 1973 I picked up my girlfriend on my Honda 500 motorcycle, at her parents house, on her 18 birthday for a summer long motorcycle tent camping trip to Colorado. Her mom and dad were not amused. Actually they were very, very upset. They said “If she gets on that motorcycle with you then she is yours..You pay for everything take care of her and by the way she is very sickly so Good Luck!”

    Well, we had a Great trip and over the years her mom and dad became my best friends and Dianne and I have been together now for 43 years!

    We retire in the next couple of years and you have been a big inspiration for us to decide to full time RV. Thank’s for all the tips and maybe we will cross paths some day.

    I don’t care what anybody says, “RV Sue & Crew Is The Best Darn RV Blog Anywhere”

    Thank you for sharing with all of us.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Oh, Scott, what a delightful, uplifting story of young love, from motorcycle trip to full-time RVing. Thank you for writing it here. I enjoyed it very much and I’m very happy for you and Dianne.

      Thanks also for one of the best compliments I’ve ever received. I’m feeling pretty good right now because of it!

      Blessings to you both. I’m glad my Colorado posts bring back those great memories.

      In a few minutes, a new post, so stay tuned!

    • Nancy from South Georgia says:

      I love this story, even though I am afraid to ride on a motorcycle. What a great thing to be able to report that you did “keep” the girl and are still going strong after all these years!

    • Fuji-maru says:

      I love this story, too! 🙂
      Your beautiful scene in youth comes to my mind visually! Also at present.
      Because I also picked up my girlfriend on my Honda! But do not “keep” the girl. 🙁

      Enjoy your forthcoming full time RV!

  43. Jules MN says:

    Sue, once again beautiful pictures! I got my keens ordered. Small feet, can order big kid sizes, saves a lot of money. Thank you for the help. I’m ready to hike Alaska. I so enjoy your posts.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      And thank you, Jules, for ordering your KEENs through my blog. I hope they fit as they tend to run small.

  44. Sue, I am working as a camp host in the White River National Forest, at a campground called North Fork (35 miles east of Meeker, CO on County Rd 8). You are more than welcome here. Rate is normal 23.00 nite, but 11.50 for you. Not a very busy place, only 28 sites, several pull throughs, 3 double vault toilets (all very clean) and all freshly painted picnic tables, and brand no bear boxes. I will be here another month or so. Stop by is you are in the area.

  45. A gal in Maple Valley, WA says:

    Hi Sue,

    Something just reminded me of how much you, and many others of us, have a great fondness for horses. Down the road a piece is a property of many acres where some horses live. The owners keep the place for their adult daughter. She teaches and trains both people and horses. Most afternoons I can tell she is heading back home with her truck and large horse chariot after ‘house-call’ lessons. Seems the beasts want to stay out and play some more because as soon she hits her driveway they start kicking the sides of the trailer. And that is very loud! Sorta funny, horses being moved by a chariot instead of vice versa.

    Been having a cool and wet summer in these parts. Across the way in a small garden plot, some of the corn has fallen over from over soaked soil.

    Don’tcha just love it when a huge flock of birds that were passing by all land in one tree just to bring you a song or two in sound surround! Maybe one or two drop ‘encouragement’ down to the garden below. A humming bird is ‘gnawing’ (favorite Uncle’s description) on a window-mounted feeder but a glass thickness away from me whilst I am typing. She wanted me to send you her greetings and that she’ll see you in the desert this winter.

    Here is my soapbox bitch and moan for now.
    I find slugs most unpleasant. And rude. Oh yeah … annoying! I try not to kill or even hurt them but when I walk in the dark (without my HugLites) I may make a mess of one or two. Sorry. It is exceptionally icky when I am barefoot. I go out most nights and scoop up what I find in my little flower pots and dump them into the well stocked local compost pile. Those buggars are well fed. But do they stay?? Noooo00. This could be seen as a sort of fitness plan to work off that Tillamook but I am at my last nerve/wit. They MOWED through all my annuals and I haven’t see a bloom on most of them all summer. I move those pots and they find them. At night when they are making a ‘run’ for my plants, they stretch out as long as a snake! I put the dead ones in the big bird feeder but I guess the jays and crows can gorge on all the live ones they want. The last straw was turning the light on in the hall to see one ‘racing’ toward me on the rug in the rig! Then, next morning, I went to grab the water kettle and there was one near the handle getting ready to take a hot bath; he had his towel, showercap on and rubber-ducky tucked under one antenna. The NERVE! Is this some twilight-zone/ x-files thing going on? Oh well, I’ll just have to be much more diligent in my round-up/ slug drive. If only the cats would change their focus to them instead of faster and funner critters. Ok I feel better now. Thanks for letting me vent.

    I kept thinking I heard water running somewhere in the rig. As I investigated, I just had to giggle and smile every time I hear it. Seems a cover on the roof got slack enough to hold some water from all the rain. I now have a roof top bird bath and it sounds like the entire flock has lined up to take a splash!

    Happy ‘Tails’!

    MV gal

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      An invasion of slugs… Yuck! Are they the long, banana slugs? I remember seeing one of those when we camped in Washington. What? Are slugs the state bird or something? Gee whiz. I don’t imagine the Chamber of Commerce includes slug photos in their brochures or on their websites. 🙂

      Thanks for writing an entertaining comment, MV gal.

  46. Nancy from South Georgia says:

    Thank you for the beautiful Colorado photos. We lived in Arvada, CO from 1958-1960, I was too young then to remember it now, but I took my mother back there in 2007 for her 75th birthday. We tried to find the house but it no longer exists, torn down to make freeway on-ramp. But we stayed a week at Estes Park and had a wonderful time.

    I would probably fall into the water with excitement if I’d ever see a beaver lodge like that. I guess we have them in Georgia but I’ve never seen one.

    I thought of you the other day, Sue! It was hotter than blazes and I just zapped onto the thought of how nice it would be to be camping someplace cool and alpine, then I thought of you. When these thoughts came to me I was at a farm stand buying squash, butterbeans, tomatoes, and watermelon. And then I thought how you used to have a big garden when you lived in Georgia. I know you miss the produce, but you don’t miss the heat and bugs!

  47. Barbara from Camano Island says:

    As I’ve said before, I love your posts. I’m behind in my comments. Due to reading all your wonderful adventures I finally got it together the week of July 4th and went tent camping! I hadn’t been camping in eight years and at that time found myself uneasy in the campground. This time it was great! I was in the North Cascade National Park, WA., no nervousness at all. I thought of you all the time, particularly whenever there was a patch of beautiful flowers. You have “made me” so much more observant. Thank you. Thank you, thank you. Really, I felt like I’d died and gone to heaven there. The only drawback – crawling in an out of a tent at age 74 to pee all the time during the night. I could have done without that!! And did I mention I’ve had a hip and knee replaced and two back surgeries. I do dream about a van or trailer but don’t seem ready to commit to that yet. Maybe some day.

    Thanks again, Sue, for your wonderful sense of adventure and for sharing it so beautifully with us all, and giving us so much encouragement.

  48. Fuji-maru says:

    Hi, RVSue and Crew,
    I love your post with your nice pix, and this blogorinoland as always!
    Thank you!

    Please delete if it does not function.

    • Fuji-maru says:

      I was looking forward to phots of a serene “zone” along Route 24 north through Red Cliff to Minturn.

      Either way I should just go there someday! 🙂

  49. Marysia says:

    Re: altitude sickness. I have extensive and personal knowledge about this subject. I learned about it hard way 15 years ago when we reached Stony Pass (el. 12,592 ft) on the second day of our annual backpacking trip In the Wemuniche Wilderness. We live in Arkansas at elev. 2,000 ft and my body just could not handle that rapid change. I was violently sick and it was with extraordinary help from my husband to evacuate to the lower altitude. I did learn hard way and never again repeated this mistake through all my high mountains backpacking and hiking trips.

    One should not experience any effects if adjusting to the high elevation is done slowly and wisely. The reason you did not pay attention to altitude in Leadeville is because by now your body can handle it. No oxygen cans are needed. You probably could go up the Independance Pass and feel ok.

    We are in the high mountains of southwest Colorado right now. I started taking Diamox on the way to Colorado. We started our hikes in New Mexico, moved to Pagosa Springs, spent a night halfway between Pagosa and Wolf Creek Pass, went down to Durango, up to Molas Pass, hiked on the Colorado trail, spent night at Molas Lake, hiked around Crystal Lake, spend a night at Ouray, then Gunnison, hiked high above the Crested Butte, spent night low around Gunnison, hiked very high on the Continental Divide trail above the Monarch Pass, and last night spent a night at the highest elevation (~10,800 ft) halfway to the Cottonwood Pass). My body is ok now with less oxygen and I will be hiking today above 12,500 feet. I took my last Diamox last night. All of the above activities took place in just 9 days.

    So, to summarize. One should:

    “Ascend slowly. If you are traveling from sea level to a destination above 8,000 feet, try to plan your trip so that you gradually reach higher altitudes over the course of a few days. A good rule of thumb is to avoid ascending more than 1,000 feet a day. If you are traveling to very high altitudes, stop at 8,000 to 9,000 feet for a few days before moving on to allow your body to adjust.

    Sleep low. Your blood levels of oxygen are the lowest when you are sleeping at a high altitude. If possible, plan your vacation so that you visit high altitudes during the day and return to lower altitudes for sleeping.

    Take medications. If your doctor recommends it, consider taking acetazolamide (Diamox) to help your body adjust to rapidly increasing altitudes.”

    Hope it helps.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Very thorough information, Marysia! You certainly know about which you speak, what with the extensive, high altitude hiking you do. Thank you! I wish your comment was under the most recent post so that more readers will see it.

      Another strategy that I have found helpful for me and for the crew when traveling by vehicle to a high altitude: Get out and walk around. This has relieved me of tingling in the feet and legs and I do believe it has kept Bridget from having a headache (she hangs her head over the side of the seat).

      • Marysia says:

        Hi Sue, thank you for reading my comment. And, yes, I agree that even short walks are very good.

        I love reading your posts. Right now I am in Buena Vista waiting for Bruce to finish his road biking. He is riding 21 miles and 4,200 ft up to the Cottonwood Pass. And back, of course. Dogs and I just finished 6 mile hike on the Midland bike trail east of town. When Bruce comes back we are going up to the pass to have late lunch and hike above the pass. In general it is what we do all day long: wake up early, ride to some trailhead, I hike with dogs. Bruce rides. We drive to another camping spot, eat dinner ( or, not, if we are too tired) and go to sleep.

        I thought about your entry from few days ago about the City Market here in town. The parking area is so small that two days ago there was not enough spaces even for the small cars. During our previous visits we parked across the street in the parking lot of small building for sale. But, this time this building was occupied so Bruce had to drop me off and pick me up after I finished. Since you travel alone it must be so much harder. And, what do you do with dogs when it gets too hot to leave them in the car?

        Also, I remembered your post about boondocking site south of Pagosa Springs and wanted to stop there for a night but it was dark by the time we were driving by there and I somehow missed the turn. We turned into wrong wrong and only then I realized my mistake.

        Another posts your wrote I remember (since we are in the same area) dealt with the dispersed camping areas outside Salida and at Clear Creek. I do not know how you find patience to deal with the often obnoxious crowds in such places. We just cannot do it. I do not want to see another person when we are in the mountains. Very seldom we even stay in the FS campgrounds because I refuse to pay for just a spot in the woods if I can find a pull out without having neighbors.

        Anyway, just wanted you to know that I very much enjoy reading your posts.

        Hope you decide to come back to high mountains of the southwest and south central Colorado instead of going north. You missed some of my favorite places.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Sometimes I purposely “miss” the special places in order to save them for another trip. I find if I do a lot of sightseeing or traveling I can become overstimulated and start glazing over, so to speak, instead of appreciating fully what is around me.

          When the weather is hot, I shop early in the day, before 9 a.m. if possible. I get in and out quickly, no dawdling. Also, remember the PTV is very well insulated, has the dark window tinting, and is a large area that doesn’t heat up quickly.

          • I identify so much with getting overloaded and unable to absorb all the wonderful things. It’s why cameras [or in my case, my iPhone] are so helpful. But you have the wonderful advantage of knowing you can come back any time you choose.

            I sometimes am worried that I might not have another chance. But then, I am suddenly remembering the best advice I ever got about traveling. In this case, we were going to England for the first [and to our knowledge] only time. And it was a desperate feeling, trying to figure out where to go, what to see. And somebody said, “Don’t treat it like your only trip. Treat it like your first trip. And travel as if you know you’ll be coming back again.”

            Some people may not ‘get it,’ but I see you and I both do.

            Again, thank you for taking us along with you on your journeys. You are a blessing to so many who see this beautiful world through your images and words.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I meant to add… It’s no wonder you missed the turn to Kinney Flats in the dark. It’s easy to miss in daylight!

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