It was another gorgeous day.
The Mountain Bluebirds were entertaining us again this morning with their beautiful songs and bug-catching acrobatics.
After the Journal entry and some time spent by Linda in the Chat Room, I tried to find us a good hike nearby.
The problem with being in Colorado is there are way too many outdoor activity choices. :)
We're surrounded by national forest and I found several hikes online. But most of them were of the 7 - 20 mile one-way variety. Sure we could just shorten any of them, but I'd hate to cut off a hike when the really good stuff was right around the corner. :)
Since the San Juan National Forest is divided up into a few ranger districts, I figured we would just drive to the closest one in Dolores and get some advice and trail maps. It would make a decent scenic loop and we could have a nice afternoon hike.
We headed west on Hwy 160 past Mesa Verde and down into Cortez. Hmmm. It was getting more desert-y and Linda was not liking what she saw. "I'm kinda done with the desert for awhile" she said. :)
We approached Cortez and we happened to know that Katie & Danny, readers we met in Abiquiu, NM, were at the Cortez KOA. So we decided to drop in.
Just after I checked in at the office, they came pulling in behind us after a grocery run. So we spent some time with them just talking about the time between our last visit and now.
They have had some rough times in their full-timing lately (including a botched repair job by a tech recommended by the KOA). So we listened and gave 'em a bit of a pep talk before leaving them with the usual hugs & handshakes. :)
From Cortez we headed north up toward Dolores where we decided to check out the McPhee Reservoir Recreation Area and campground. It had been a place I considered for staying in the area.
So we drove through the two campground loops - with the permission of the gate attendant of course. The campground is actually off the water with no views of the lake.
We actually liked the lower, non-reservable Juniper loop better than the Pinon loop. Hook-ups are limited in both loops. Linda decided she would still prefer to be out of the high desert terrain if she were going to be in this area of Colorado.
We did drive on up to the overlook where there were really nice views of the reservoir and distant mountains.
This shot is a closer view of the same thing. The beige part with white specks is actually another federal campground across the lake. Close to the water, but out in the open.
Another view to the southeast.
We left the reservoir and found a public lands information office before actually getting into Dolores. Oops. Didn't realize what day it was - guess this office is closed on the weekends. :)
So we didn't get what we came for, and Linda was ready to move back toward the mountains. So we took the shortcut from Dolores to Mancos where we would go by the Mancos State Park.
Just before the town of Mancos, we saw the sign for the state park and turned off. The paved road goes about a half mile and then turns into dusty gravel. Three and half miles later we found the park. Whew! Glad we didn't choose this one. :)
They let us drive through, and the campground was much too tight for our big rig anyway. But we continued on around Jackson Gulch Reservoir within the park. It's a small lake with wakeless boating allowed.
It is clear and pretty with the La Plata (silver) Mountains in the background. Those are the mountain peaks we can see from our campsite.
After seeing some Canada Geese and a Western Grebe, another life bird, we backtracked out of the park. They do have some hiking trails that were good lengths for us, but by this time Linda's stomach was acting up and we decided a hike was not a good idea.
So we returned home. It was late afternoon and the horses in the pasture behind our rig paid us a visit.
We have debated staying here a little longer. It is so peaceful.
But just in case we leave on Monday, Linda started looking at places to stay around Pagosa Springs that might have an "it" factor. Linda was researching because I was immersed in our month-end financials.
I did take a break while Linda was in the chat room to get this twilight photo.
Nothing like the soothing colors and cool, clear mountain air to make you forget about spreadsheets for just a little while. :)
But the time was brief. :)
Back to it. The financials are ugly for June. And the Rally accounting makes things a bit more complicated. :)
We got a little crazy with the spending and we had the majority of our electrical equipment upgrade expenses. Our account didn't get charged for the cruise, so that sucker is going in July. :)
The news is still pretty decent for the year-to-date numbers. I can always find a silver lining. :)
I finally completed everything around midnight. Now I just have to post my usual month-end financial entry and get the results up on our financial pages.
Linda was long finished with the evening chat and was in bed by that time. She had to get her rest because the Sunday morning chat sessions are rather lively. :)
All in all it was one of those "take things as they come" days. Nothing spectacular, but a very pleasant day nonetheless. One day at a time - we used to talk about that, but it's wonderful to actually be living it. :)