Tuesday, April 19, 2016

April 3, 2016 - Taos, TX to Salida, CO

It was a very lovely morning, but there were no clouds. Edith was hoping to see the clouds hanging above the mountain peaks, so she can time lapse before we check out of the campground. It was not as cold as it was the last few days.  

Before leaving Monte Bello Erwin went to the dump station.  On way out the owners, John and Concha, thanked us for staying here. We told them how much we liked the campground and that we will be back another time.

We turned right onto Hwy 64 W toward Hwy 285 N. The weather was just perfect for driving and sightseeing.

We pulled over to San Antonio Mtns Viewing area on Hwy 285 N, got out to appreciate the beauty and the mountains around. The area is excellent for wildlife viewing during the winter months.  We saw eight pronghorns.

We made it to Colorade State line at 11 am.  We pulled over, so we can take pictures of the state sign. 

As soon as we entered Colorado the roads were much smoother and quieter than New Mexico roads!

Edith checked for roadside attractions along the way, found there is one in Antonio, CO: Cano’s Castle - Beer Can Folk Art. However, when we got there we found the road to be very impassable, so we bypassed it and continued driving through the town.

Sandhill Crane sign on Brick Silo
on Hwy 285 7 miles north of Antonio, CO
Horse and Sheep paintings on buildings in La Jara, CO

Snowcapped Blanca Peak (?)
It could be Mt. Lindsey
Hwy 285
There were several vintage train cars and engines at old railroad yard on Hwy 160 in Alamos, CO. There was a large RV parking lot by the train yard, so we parked there and had lunch while enjoying the view of the trains.

GPS suggested to use 17, which is almost a direct route, but we decided to stay on Hwy 285.  Yes, it was much longer and more time to reach the destination, but we were enjoying the scenery.

Approaching Pancha Pass Summit on Hwy 285. View of the snowcapped mtns over the road

Pointing at Poncha Pass

Awesome Poncho Pass
Getting closer to Poncha Pass

We made a right turn onto Hwy 50 in Poncha Springs, CO (The Crossroad of the Rockies). There was a stainless steel horse sculpture at one business establishment.

We checked out several campgrounds along the route, decided to camp at Salida East Recreation Area (unimproved) because the view of the mtns is awesome and it was FREE!   One can stay here for 14 days within 45 days.  Hookups and fresh water were not available.  There were few RVs camped out nearby.  There was a tent pitched behind trees not far from us, but they checked out by the evening.

What a great view while relaxing!

The stars were everywhere. You could easily see with your naked eyes.  Edith did not look for the Milky Way

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