Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Durango to Steamboat

We spent 3 days in Durango waiting for our car to get fixed. It was well worth the wait as it ACTUALLY got fixed this time. We found a great shop that took their time and did the job right. Woot! With a happy truck we started to make our way north to Steamboat. The drive was AMAZING. It was slow going as it was raining and the route was windy, with some drop offs that had no guardrail. I was impressed it was a major road. It was a little scary. This state is gorgeous everywhere. We made it to Ouray and camped out for the night. The next day we did a short hike until about midday.  It was a loop and we added an out and back trek to a waterfall. From there we made the rest of the ride to Steamboat.

 view along the hike

Part of the waterfall we walked to

I arrived in Steamboat full of excitement to see my good friend, Marissa and her cool kids Cat and Blue. We arrived on a Friday night and stayed for the weekend. Steamboat was having Riverfest that weekend with several competitions going on. We went to town to watch the festivities. There was a kayak race, stand up paddle board and even a dog race that we unfortunately missed.
 waiting to watch the races

 a series of this groups fall from glory lol....

The next day we did a hike up the mountain Marissa had been skiing all winter. It was a longer hike that I expected and we were all sore afterward, but it was fun. We took the dogs and when we hit a patch of snow they were in heaven. Her golden retriever seemed to have the most fun as he laid on his side and slid down the snow, it was hilarious.

 Easy at the end of his slide, Miles in the back happily digging away

a view.. we think was from this hike lol

They had work and school during the week so we took off to the woods. We spent 4 days out in the Zerkel Wilderness. With snowshoes strapped to our packs we started our adventure on an 80 degree sunny day. The first day the trail was entirely dry and we felt silly having snowshoes.

first day on the trail

Vicious river crossing, it was extremely cold from the snow melt, poor Matthew came back in while I was crossing to help me. I was struggling and on the verge of tears. Got to do it again on the way back but kept my boots on that time.

camp that night 

Halfway through the next day we were putting on the snowshoes and grateful to have them. I never imagined I would be in a tank top and snowshoes and feel warm enough. That's Colorado for you. It was a great backpacking trip. We hiked to a river then on to some frozen lakes at 10,000 feet. The sleeping situation was less than ideal (lumpy and wet) but totally worth the views. Matthew did a much more detailed account of the trip, with photos... http://www.blog.smalladventures.net/2017/06/trip-report-zerkel-wilderness.html

At this river we put on the snowshoes

frozen lake view from our campsite

cooking dinner

We returned to Steamboat the following weekend for more hugs. We did another hike, this time along steamboat springs trail. Partway through Marissa, Blue and Mike (new friend) turned around, Matthew and I continued but ran. We haven't run in a while so it was tough, but felt good. We ended up running about 6.5 miles. That evening we went to Sunpies, a local bar that offers Hurricanes strong enough you only need one. It has a nice backyard on grass and it's against the Yampa river.

The next morning we attended yoga on the lawn near Marissa's place. I don't recall what we did after that but we had a chill day, with a short ride in the evening to the botanical garden in town. Oh yeah, Steamboat is amazing for bike riding. There is a wonderful trail system and it runs along the river and feels serene.

We said our goodbyes, and took off for some rock climbing. We spent a few hours out and did two climbs. The first was easy until the top but not bad. The second was trickier but doable. Being a 5.9 climb I was happy to finish it relatively easily.

We are now making our way to Rocky Mountain National park and Roosevelt National forest to do some more rock climbing and hiking. I've started counting down the days to St. Vincent. We fly out to see my family and friends on the 21st. Life is tough on the road so we need a little R&R in the Caribbean, heh.