2017 Aug 31 Pagosa Springs, CO (Blanco Basin)

On our last day in Pagosa Springs we visited the small local musuem and went on what was billed as “one of the most spectaular scenic drives in Colorada.”

We stopped to look for a couple of caches on our way to the museum – with no success.

There was one hidden just up the street from this nice church, but we didn’t find it. Poppy looks good sitting there.  Of course, the distance hides all the dust and dirt.  She will need a good cleaning when we get home.

The museum was hosting a quilt show and all through the building were gorgeous quilts hanging above the displays.  The volunteer at the front desk gave us a binder that had photos and descriptions of all the quilts.  It added a nice touch to the museum. There were no names posted under this photo but it looks like a multi-generational gathering.

                                                                       Look at this oh-so-modern television. After we finished at the museum we drove south about ten miles along the road we drove up when we arrived.  We turned off onto a relatively good gravel road for the drive to Blanco Basin.

The first half of the drive was pretty but not what I would call spectacular.  It would be stunning in the fall when all the different tree’s leaves change colour. We decided to make a detour and go up to Opal Lake which derives it’s name from milky water created by minerals leaching in.  The marker said 2 miles to the Opal Lake trailhead, which was a one mile hike (in and out or each way, they didn’t say).  We drove three miles up a not-so-good gravel road and finally came to a fork with an arrow pointing to the right and a sign saying Opal Lake Trailhead 1 mile.  Obviously someone used a GPS direct signal (straight line) to calculate the distance not actually drive the road.  Since the road conditions were degrading we decided to not see Opal Lake and turned around.

We had not been hugely enamored of the scenic drive to this point and were tempted to just head back to town, but curiousity won out and we turned right to continue our drive.  The road comes to a dead end so we knew we wouldn’t be wandering aimlessly and getting lost.

Not too far much farther down the road the trees opened up to a nice valley with expansive views of the mountains that form Continental Divide. We also passed a dozen or so homes and ranches.  It would be about an hour drive to get to town from here.  I have become to citified over the years.  There is no appeal for me to live that far from a grocery store.  Thankfully for our dinner tables there are many people who do like being ‘away from it all.’ We came to the end of the road and turned back.  Once we arrived at the resort we did the usual photos, blog (until the wi-fi died – again), dinner, dishes, and sunset watch. The sunset wasn’t very flashy; but, as always, still lovely.  Valerie, one of my new sunset-watch friends, said the sun was sad we were all leaving the next day and just wanted to go down and get it over with.  This Canada Goose was not paying attention when the rest of its flock wandered off and it kept walking over to Valerie and me as if it was asking us to give it directions.  It was quite bold, coming within a couple of feet of my feet.

We are heading only a short distance (about 50 miles) west to Durango today.  We will, of course, find some geocaches along the way and poke around into canyons or waterfalls or parks if any are near.  Saturday we are taking the narrow-guage railway trip from Durango to Silverton and back.  I wanted to do this trip when we came through here last winter on our way home from California but the railway wasn’t running yet.  I am looking forward to doing it now.

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