Friday, April 15, 2011

An Adventure

hotel in Rifle
At the hotel in Rifle yesterday morning

Greetings from Durango, Colorado. The family is here, minus canine and feline members (thanks to my family for staying with the animals and watching the house). Eric is here for a conference and Cordelia and I decided to tag along. Yesterday was supposed to be a quick drive from Rifle, CO to Durango. We made the trip in good time until the last 74 miles when the weather turned on us as we entered a terrifying mountain pass just outside of the picturesque town of Ouray.

Just outside of Ouray, before the pass

We started up the mountain and could see that there were dark storm clouds gathering. The road was two lanes up a ridiculously steep (cliffs) mountain, no guard rails. Seriously folks I have never in my life seen anything like this. We were following behind a plow. Eric and I began to feel a bit terrified. The plow stopped and told us that we would "probably" be able to make it as he kicked our tires. Ummmmm...probably? The other probably is that we might plummet to our deaths. Then it started to snow. So we turned around (no small matter) and crept back down the mountain.

We stopped in Ridgway to find a way around the passes to get to Durango. While in the small town of Ridgway we got directions (not without a little city slicker treatment for not braving the pass--hello we don't have 4wd or a death wish). We did get to see their small train museum and were given a quick tour, which was kind of a treat and also a calming let down from the adreniline rush of the pass adventure (did I mention I am crazy terrified of heights). We ended up taking a several hour detour. * Later we learned that they closed the pass.

caboose 1
Caboose in Ridgway

Inside the caboose at Ridgway

Our detour led us out of the mountains and into the desert-y area known as Disappointment Valley, where renegade cows held the road hostage.

disappoinment valley
Disappointment Valley

Cows on the highway

We followed the Northstar.

Following the Northstar (get it?) **Eric gets credit for that joke

Eventually we made it back to civilization. Finding our way to anAMAZING Victorian hotel (more on that later with photos).

brushing teeth
At the hotel last night

Cordelia, who was awake for all but 1 1/2 hours of the journey, was an ANGEL. She could have made the journey very unpleasant. Instead she was a little charmer, no worse than the occasional whine!

At the hotel
At the hotel this morning

We settled in our hotel for the night, exhausted by the unexpected journey. Durango is a gorgeous area of the country and today Cordelia and I are going to explore the town while Eric is conferencing. I see there is a well reviewed veg restaurant as well! Can't wait to try it out.

What have you been up to?


affectioknit said...

That will be fun - looking forward to lots of Durango pics...

Anonymous said...

Durango!! Are you at the Strater? We lived in the Durango area for about 6 years, until I was 15. We still have family there, and will be going to visit in June. Your story of the pass gave me such memories of having to make that winter trip ala school bus for basketball games. There was one time when we almost went over the edge, very scary! I love that your family is getting acquainted with my family's old stomping grounds!

..... Carmen said...

I'm glad you didn't take the scary pass :| Looks like beautiful country!

Emily said...

Oh my. That truly was an adventure! I am glad you all are ok and hope that you have had a fun time today exploring the town. For years, to get to church camp in the summer, our bus would have to drive up a steep two-lane road with scary drop offs and little in the way of guards. It would freak me out every year!!

Momma CupKate said...

A) I am convinced that mountains are against cars and try to eat them whenever possible.
B) I've gotten a very dear friend of mine (Bella. She's good people) addicted to your blog. She's at my table giggling over this post with me. It feels like a book club. (Blog club?)
C) I love, adore and heart (big and puffy) the diaper pic of Cordelia. SO sweet and babyish. Makes me feel like Sweetpea's babyhood is not whizzing by quite at the rate it feels presently.

singlemama said...

thanks for sahring your day.
(I just love that follow the northstar :) )

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