Wednesday, October 14, 2020

2020 Colorado - Part One



We left Indiana on 9/9/2020 headed to Colorado to chase the Aspen and trout.  Our first stop was Coralville Lake near Iowa City, an Army Corp of Engineers campsite that has become our go to stop on our travel west.


Our second night was at Little Thunder Bay Campground, Lake McConaughy SRA, Ogallala, NE


Mountain Passes

Gore Pass(9,527'), Rabbit Ears Pass (9,426'), Milner Pass (10,758'), Iceberg Pass (11,827'), Guanella Pass (11,669'), Kenosha Pass (10,001'), Independence Pass (12,095', Highest paved pass in North America), Schofield Pass (10,207'), Kebler Pass (9,980'), Slumgullion Pass (11,530'), Spring Creek Pass (10,898'), Lizard Head Pass (10,222'), Red Mountain Pass (11,018'), and Vail Pass (10,603'), Dallas Divide (8,983')


4 X 4 Roads

Guanella Pass Road, Slate River Road/Schofield Pass/Gothic Road Loop,Lincoln Creek Road, Alpine Plateau Road FS 868

 Towns Visited

Steamboat Springs, Grand Lake, Aspen, Crested Butte, Lake City, Creede, Telluride, Ridgway, Ouray, & Silverton

Rocky Mountains


We camped at Stagecoach State Park, near Steamboat Springs CO for 3 nights.  This was a beautiful setting on Stagecoach Reservoir.  We took a day trip into Steamboat Springs and I also got to fish the tailwaters of the Yampa River.

Yampa River

We drove into Steamboat Springs fot lunch and observed the Middle Creek Fire burning along the ridge line outside Steamboat Spring.  Due to the location it wasn't possible to get crews into the area.

Middle Creek Fire

We headed to Stillwater Campground on Lake Granby, a US Forest Service Campground.  Our site was high above the lake, which provided great views.  Both Stagecoach and Stillwater were late replacements for Moraine Campground in RMNP, which we had a reservation for, but due to covid-19 they were allowing 40% capacity.  It actually ended up less of a rat race and our day trips into the park on Trail Ridge Road were beautiful drives.  The fast spreading Cameron Peak fire had moved into the RMNP back country and the smoke was so bad Trail Ridge Road was closed.  Then a couple of days after Labor Day the Rocky Mountains got 19" of snow.  This slowed the fire  for a short time.  They had to plow 6' drifts on Trail Ridge Road, and it was until a couple days before our arrival at Stillwater that they finally re-opened Trail Ridge Road.

                Williams Fork Fire    Sunset This fire was located around Fraser and Granby, CO                    

Bear Lake Bierstadt Lake hike

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