Friday, July 07, 2017

O'Haver Lake then Crested Butte

We left BV Saturday, early evening. Dumped the tanks and took on water at the Poncha Springs Welcome Center then spent the night in the ATV unloading area not far from the campground.
As expected, the campground is full. Mostly younger families enjoying the long holiday weekend.

We drove to the top of Marshall Pass. The last time we were here in May, there was still snow on the road.

Wonder if these are the same mountain goats we saw the last time we were here? They paw a  hole then lick the salt they uncover. Or so I'm told.

Tried some more fishing today. No luck once again.

For future reference, the best camp sites for us are, in this order, 32,10,7,22. Maybe 12. The others require stairs to get to the picnic table and fireplace area.
Once again, not even a nibble.

Had lunch at the Hunger Trailer in Poncha Springs. Been there before; a great choice.

We decided to move on to Crested Butte this morning.
We were in the day-use area getting the Jeep ready to tow. A State Wildlife truck pulls in next to us. I asked the women driver if she would like me to move the camper. She said, 'No, take your time. I'm just going to restock the lake with rainbow trout.'  😥 Just my luck.

Downtown Gunnison and Crested Butte were a mass of cars and people. Going to City Market in Gunnison towing the Jeep was out of the question. Typical of any resort community during Prime Time. Not unlike South Florida in the winter, the Maine or Oregon coasts in the summer, on and on.
We're camped in the Gunnison NF off FSR 811/Washington Gulch Road. Right here.

38.933628 -107.018354 at 9,672'

All around us are pine  forests , meadows, wildflowers, a small stream and mountains. We think this just might be one of our most beautiful campsites ever. As we do, I put out the hummingbird feeder. One curious bird but nothing else. We're guessing there are so many flowers in bloom that the birds have an abundant natural food supply.

A stormy afternoon

Mount Crested Butte from our campsite

Had a much needed storm this afternoon. The roads will be a little nicer to drive on and the camper and Jeep got the dust washed off.
We drove FSR-811 with the goal of Schofield Pass. The pass is still blocked at the top from the late Spring snow. A beautiful drive nonetheless.

Wildflowers everywhere. CB bills itself as the wildflower capital of CO

In the afternoon we drove to Kebler Pass stopping at the Lake Irwin FS campground. I've never seen campground interior roads or campsites in such poor condition. A great setting on a beautiful lake but a miserable campground. On the way to the campground are some great disbursed camping areas for most any size RV. No cell phone service so that pretty much rules the location out for us.

Carol was about tired of being bounced around in the Jeep so I  drove to the semi-ghost town of Gothic then on towards Schofield Pass (FSR-317/Gothic Road). There was a FS sign saying the road to the pass was still snow covered but I had to see if they were just kidding. Solid snow.
 There is a FS campground on the road but its for tents only. A sign says no disbursed camping along FSR-317 from June 15 - August 15.
After driving 811, 317 and Kebler Pass Road (CR-12), we found no disbursed camping area that was any better than where we are as far as convenience to town, all around beauty, cell phone and internet service. We will be back to this spot.

We had been talking about heading home. Two weeks camping seems like a good time for us. About 4:00 we headed out with the Buena Vista Rodeo Grounds as our midway stop.

On the road by 5:30. An uneventful drive home arriving about 9:00am.
458 miles in total for the trip.15 days. Just right for us.

After Labor Day, we will take off once again. Probably back to the Red Feather Lakes area. Our favorite nearby camping area.