Geyser Pass

Manti-La-Sal National Forest

Moab, Utah

September 26, 2016

There is a very scenic back country off the LaSal Loop Rd in Moab, Utah.  Geyser Pass Rd winds up to Geyser Pass and then down the other side of the LaSal Mountains.  It passes through lovely groves of aspens from 8,000 to 10,000 ft elevation.  It is a joy in autumn.

The morning sun just peaking over the mountain.

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an autumn country road as the colors get brighter the higher we travel.

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Another side road leads up to Oowah Lake.  A quiet spot to relax and enjoy lunch.

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the schaefer trail

Moab, Utah

September 20, 2016

The Schaefer Trail is a wonderfully scenic ride from Moab that begins along the Colorado River to Postash Road.  It has a feeling of landing on Mars with the red rock cliffs.

This is a view from Thelma and Louise Point where the final jump scene of the movie was filmed over the Colorado River.

_dsc0396_7_8_2016-09-20-schaefer-tril-potash-thelma-louise-crp-ortnThe jeep had a posing moment before we continued down the trail.

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The Colorado River turns in a sharp gooseneck in Canyonlands.

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The view from the top of the trail always takes my breath away.  Canyonlands National Park is a feast for the eyes with it’s incredible depth and texture layers.

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Aspen gold

Ouray, Colorado

September 18, 2016

The aspens are turning gold high in Ironton Park in the Uncompahgre National Forest.  I hiked up a hill to get this view of the Red Mountain #1 and #2.

_DSC0204_5_6_2016-09-18-Ironton-Park-autumnLooking east into the San Juan Mountains the color was coming out strong in the strong sun light.

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A view of Trico Peak taken with a telephoto lens.

_DSC0300_1_2_2016-09-18-Ironton-Park-Trico-Pk-ortnWe have enjoyed out time on the trails in Ouray and Silverton.  As usual the Alpine Loop is our favorite.

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Yankee Boy Basin

Ouray, Colorado

September 13, 2016

On a very cold and windy morning, we headed up Yankee Boy Basin.  The popularity of this trail continues to grow with jeeps, tour guides, hikers and atvs.  Rain from the night before made the cascades full.

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Near the twin falls, the view shows fresh snow near Stony Mountain and fall tones getting a good start.

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A nice hiking trail near Stony Mountain and if it wasn’t so windy, I might have gone further down the trail.

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The jeep posing at the height of the trail.  The San Juan Mountains always seem to have their own weather system.  If I keep posting jeep pics, he’ll keep driving me to these wonderful locations.  Good deal.

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Red Mountain Mining Tour

Ouray, Colorado

September 11, 2016

We took a quiet, peaceful tour of the Red Mountain Mining District early this morning.  On the 15th anniversary of Sept 11th, the mood was somber.  Many mining towns sprung up in this area in the 1880’s with names like Guston, Ironton Park, Chattanooga, Red Mountain City, Hudson Town and Rogerville.  These now abandoned towns bring to mind the true spirit of America with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The miners embody the American spirit in my mind.

Our first stop was the famous Yankee Girl Mine with the first vertical shaft house in the area.

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A view of the old Genessee Mine remains

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My favorite is the Longfellow Mine with it’s beautiful setting high in the San Juan Mountains.

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a close-up of the remains of the Longfellow Mine.

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A view of the San Juan Mountains as the rain clouds closed in at over 12,000 ft elevation. Time to head down to a safer elevation.

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Corkscrew Gulch

Ouray, Colorado

August 31, 2016

Leaving early today, we took a jeep ride up scenic and appropriately named Corkscrew Gulch to Hurricane Pass.  The road climbs by numerous switchbacks  (the last few are steep and narrow) to the red soil summit at 12,000 feet.   At the top of Corkscrew, we took a side spur road higher up Red Mountain #1.  Having taking this side trip many times, we were surprised to discover a sheep camp at the reflection ponds above 12,000 feet elevation.  They had set up a tidy tent with metal stove pipe, a welcoming large sheep dog and a couple hundred noisy sheep.  This falls under the title of “You never know what you might find along the trail.”

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The Red Mountains always takes a minute for the eye to adjust as the many colors are created by the rich oxidized metals in the soils.

Continuing north to Hurricane Pass (12,730 feet), we had a great view of Lake Como and the panoramic San Juan Mountains.

SSC-9084-87-90-2016-08-31-Hurricane-Pass_Panorama1Lake Como

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The jeep had a poser at Hurricane Pass….

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The  high elevation tundra below California Pass forms the headwaters of the West Fork of the Animas River.  Many mines are evident in the mountainsides.

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Finally, we headed to the ghost town of Animas Forks settled in 1881.  Here is one of the abandoned miners housing still standing today.  With an outstanding view of Cinnamon Mountain it would make a great fixer-uppper.

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