Monday, August 11, 2008

Park Creek - Pagosa

(Jan) We found a great place to boondock in the Rio Grande N.F. along Park Creek/Summitville Rd. Nestled in a small grove of trees with the stream gurgling close by, we enjoyed watching marmots graze in our back yard and hummingbirds flock to our feeder. A drive up into the mountains and a visit to the ghost town of Summitville was our first order of business. Walking among the 10 or so remaining houses (& outhouses), it was fun to imagine what life must have been like in the 1870’s when it was a bustling mining town at 11,800 ft elevation. Today it is the site of a massive environmental clean-up. We followed the road for nearly 19 miles through beautiful upland meadows filled with flowers surrounded by mountain peeks near Elwood Pass and surprised a deer or two. We had wanted to visit the ghost town of Platoro but the road deteriorated into a jeep trail and had to turn around. The next day we drove over Wolf Creek Pass and took many of the forest road off of the highway and explored more of the wonderful mountain scenery. On both afternoons we took long walks along the stream and beaver ponds. What an idyllic place, except for having no cell or internet service, it was just about perfect.

Saturday morning we packed up the rig, drove over Wolf Creek pass and drove over to Pagosa Springs with a stop to see Treasure Falls. We found a unique boondocking site near the highway at an abandoned lot complete with cell and internet service. It wasn’t very pretty but it was a great location. We headed downtown to walk along the San Juan River, watch the people swimming and tubing and also, visited the shops on Main Street. We attended Mass (and 3 baptisms) that evening at a charming mission style church one block off of Main Street. The next morning after breakfast we decided to get out and walk. We started at the Visitors Center, wandered through a residential area, crossed the river on the east side of town and stopped for a relaxing break at a restaurant terrace along the river. We walked back along the river and hotel spa and springs area and logged 3.8 miles.

This morning after getting fuel, dumping tanks and taking on water we headed on over to Durango. We couldn’t find what we were looking for there in a camping spot so we continued on Hwy. 550 toward Silverton. We found a scenic place in the woods at Haviland Lake State Park overlooking the lake. It’s gorgeous here!

A very important side note; our youngest grandson, Isaac Charles Moore, celebrated his first birthday last Saturday. Got to ‘talk’ to him on the phone! He, his sister and parents Josh and Sarah came to visit in July and we enjoyed every minute of our time together.

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