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Category: Touring

Snow Day at The Monument

Rediscovering the Colorado National Monument #2
Sunday, January 6, 2019

This weekend Diane and I stayed home and took it easy, but we did take some time on Sunday afternoon to visit the west side of the Colorado National Monument for a couple of hours during a snowstorm. We drove a snow-packed Rim Rock Drive to its closure gate at the Independence Monument Viewpoint and stopped to take a few photos along the way. We only saw a handful of other vehicles up there braving the winter road conditions. I was hoping to hike a few of the shorter trails along the rim of Wedding Canyon near the Visitor Center in the snow, but once we got up into the Monument we found that the clouds were low and there was no view into the canyons. I didn’t want to hike those trails with no views, so we decided to skip them and only hiked the Alcove Nature Trail this time. I think the last time I hiked this short trail was almost ten years ago, so it was nice to finally revisit it.

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Christmas Eve Clouds

Christmas Eve | Monday, December 24, 2018

When I got out of work early on Christmas Eve it looked like the winter storm that had been around all day was finally starting to clear out, and I thought it might be a good opportunity to photograph a nice sunset. I stopped home quickly to grab my camera and then headed up to the Colorado National Monument to see if I could get a few photos. Unfortunately, there was a thick bank of low clouds hovering right over the Monument and I never got the light that I was hoping for. I waited around for a while hoping the clouds would clear before sunset, but they never did, so I ended up not taking many photos. I’ll share the few photos I did take below.

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Nine Mile Canyon 2018

Diane’s Birthday Weekend | Saturday & Sunday, October 20-21, 2018

Since it was Diane’s birthday was on Saturday and she wanted to spend the weekend in Nine Mile Canyon, that’s what we did! It actually worked out great since neither of us had been there yet this year and I like to try to get there at least once each year. We left home early on Saturday morning, stopped at the gas station in Wellington and then headed right into the canyon to see what we could find. There was nothing in particular that I was looking for on this trip, so we just drove slowly through the canyon and kept an eye out to see what we could find. It’s really amazing that no matter how many times I have driven through this canyon we were still able to find quite a few new petroglyphs and pictographs, and even a couple ruins. We spent all day in the canyon and then returned to Wellington where we took a little break from camping and spent the night in a hotel. Then on Sunday morning we were back in the canyon for a few more hours before heading back home. It was a great time! Here are plenty of photos from the weekend.

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Aztec Ruins & Angel Peak

Saturday – Monday, July 28-30, 2018

This weekend Diane and I were heading down to Albuquerque to attend a concert on Sunday evening, so we decided to split the drive up into two days and spend a night in Bloomfield, New Mexico. This way we could visit some nearby ruins and maybe catch a nice sunset without spending all day sitting in the car. We left home early on Saturday morning and took the scenic route over Lizard Head Pass and through Rico and Dolores, arriving in Aztec in the early afternoon. It had been a while since I visited Aztec Ruins National Monument on one of my trips to Chaco Canyon and Diane had never been there before, so we started out with an easy hike through this small Monument that’s located right in the middle of town.

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Old Hundred Gold Mine Tour

Saturday, July 21, 2018

I’ve been driving by the Old Hundred Gold Mine Tour near Silverton every summer for over a decade now, and every time I do I always think to myself that I should stop by and check it out sometime. Usually I have other plans and am headed elsewhere, so I never do. Since my family from out of town has been visiting me for the past few days, they wanted to go to the Ouray Hot Springs this morning and then drive over Red Mountain Pass so they could go on the Mine Tour and get dinner in Silverton afterwards. Since Diane and I have been tagging along with them wherever they want to go, we finally got our chance to check out this tour. I must say, it was pretty cool and very informative if you are at all interested in the old mines found in the region. For those who are not familiar, this particular tour lasts about one hour and takes you 1/3 of a mile into the heart of 13,300 foot Galena Mountain where you can follow the vein and see real mining equipment in action. I took a number of photos during the tour that you can check out below.

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