01 August 2010

The Arapaho National Forest

If you like primitive camping then the Arapaho National Forest is a great place to go.  There were two campgrounds on our route and we opted to stay at the second one so we could get a little further down the road.  There is always a risk when you do this because the next site could be full, or you might not like it as much as you did the one you passed up, but that is part of the adventure I suppose.  In this case we chose right.  The second place was called Denver Creek and we found a great place to pitch our tent, again right on the river.  The camp host had water for us and we fed the chipmunks our cashews.

It was so pretty here but the dead pine trees projected a deep, lingering sadness.  The pine beetles have done so much damage and it was painful to see so much destruction.  

No traffic at all out here.  It was super quiet.

That peak back there is called Park View.
A closer look at it.

A couple of cyclists sharing the road with us.  One of them used to race bikes in the Olympics and was a true pioneer for women competing in the sport.  She had just recently retired and was riding once again.
We cross this often, but this one was a pretty long climb.  Not that we mind at all.  We like the climbs because they give us a chance to talk, especially when we can ride side by side.

I know you're not supposed to drink from these but I can't resist.  They are so cold and taste so good, and despite my expression in this pic, they have never made me sick. 

We met some more great folks at the campground.  They had seen us riding earlier in the day and couldn't believe we had made it as far as we did.  They ride bikes too.  There was a young girl named Sasha and her Dad and his Mom (Grandma) named Norma.  They were delightful company and I wish I had some pictures of them to put up but unfortunately our camera batteries were dead.  
As we left the forest we saw more plains and farmland.
What an awesome place to live. 
Ken looks back at the road we had just come down.  We made our way downhill to a tiny place called Rand where we found some batteries and a cool drink and Ken got his Mom a present.
We were so happy it was open.  Cute place!
Good thing we weren't speeding!
Spookier than other cops we've seen on the road, that's for sure.

Some fertile farmland can be found up in the mountains.
Wildflowers are plenty and we often stop to smell them.  The smells are so powerful when you are outside all the time.  You really become aware of them and they are powerfully connected to my new memories.
Flying our flags proudly through this beautiful land.

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