Saturday, January 7, 2012

Have It Ouray! (Speaking of Road Trips)

When my brother, sister and her grandson, and I took a trip to Roswell to see Mom, we accidently detoured through Red Mountain Pass in Colorado. Somebody blinked at the Moab, UT turnoff and by the time we figured that out, we decided not to turn back. The clerk at the filling station said it would be a beautiful drive through Red Mountain, just a little longer and we would surely enjoy the scenery. We drove through Ouray, CO, and I remarked that it reminded me of pictures I had seen of the Swiss Alps.

It took my breath away. Nevermind that I had traveled through there before--when I was a young child and we lived in that part of Colorado--it was surprisingly stunning. But, my brother the driver was not happy at having missed the shorter route and this new way seemed to never end. He was driven to get to Roswell and not waste any more time than we had to. I, on the other hand, wanted to stop and take pictures at every curve in the road. At one particularly striking pass, my sister looked back at me without saying a word aloud, but with a look that said, "Uh-oh--now THAT is a once-in-a-lifetime photo op that you're just going to have to do without." Then we got to Silverton and I wanted to take more pictures of yet another charming little mining town.

All I could do was pronounce, "I'm going to come here on vacation sometime." My brother answered, "You are on vacation and you are here."

Well, yeah...I guess.    We made it to my mom's, which was, after all, the point of the trip and had a wonderful time visiting with her and we even managed to work out travel details that allowed us another little detour to Santa Fe on the way home. That's another post with more pictures.

That was in the spring or early summer, and true to my impulsive nature, I announced that I was going to take a little trip back to Ouray, Colorado, the Switzerland of America just a few short months later. We had a four-day weekend and rented a van to make it easier and roomier for little ones. Katy and Jon, my neice Jillian and her two children, and I drove down in the van, my sister and her grandson came in their own car and we had a FANTABULOUS long weekend in October in Ouray and surrounding areas.

Had the run of a couple of suites in a Victorian hotel that was just getting ready to close for the season. A five-and-dime-type store was going out of business in town there, and I can't remember exactly what I purchased, but I do remember it was a great deal! Of course, we tried the local cuisine, including a candy store where they make cookies with left-over candy bits thrown in the dough. The regular hot springs were closed, but the clothing-optional hot springs were open. Actually, not really clothing-optional--that's just what we called them in California--here, it was just plain "nudist" because if you wanted to wear your clothes, you couldn't. We traveled to Telluride and Silverton and had a couple of other accidental detours on the way back through Gateway, Ut., which was another eye-opening experience for me.

The following pictures are a few of my favorites and are an example of the kinds of things I like to take pictures of on a road trip. The muddy-looking river is not muddy, but stained with iron tailings and my camera couldn't quite figure out how to get the true color. In real life that creek was very rust-colored.


Gorges Smythe said...

Good photos, all. Good memories, too, it appears.

DeEtta said...

Loved the pictures. I need to go there. I like that truck graveyard with the trucks all in a row.

buzzard said...

Stunning scenery, no wonder you loved it so much.