Since we had a mini-adventure last week when we decided to find a new way home, I thought I’d share a not-so-mini adventure we had while we were in Colorado Springs, CO, back in 2008. It will long be remembered as a drive of a lifetime!
September 21, 2008 – Dirt Roads and Daring Adventures
We had quite a day yesterday. Since we found ourselves back at Glen Eyrie until Tuesday (we had moved briefly to a local Camping World in the hopes they could fix our awning. They could not. (at least not before we had to be leaving for Texas) ), we decided to try to take care of some sightseeing we had somehow not been able to accomplish previously. So, bright and early we headed out to drive the Rampart Range Road to Woodland Park.
The road starts in the Garden of the Gods –
The Dirt Road Adventure begins….
The views were spectacular (although Gary does wonder why I continue to take pictures of Pike’s Peak, since it doesn’t really change. It has such a commanding presence in the area that I just can’t seem to stop myself!) –
The road was a little rough, but the views were wonderful. And before we knew it, we were heading into Woodland Park where we enjoyed a hearty breakfast and then continued on our way to 11 Mile Canyon. Gary had gone fly fishing there last weekend, and while he hadn’t caught anything, he had been very taken with the beauty of the area.
As you can see by the entrance, it’s easy to see why….
As we were headed back to the entrance, we noticed a turn off onto another dirt road. According to our trusty GPS, it would (eventually) lead us to a county road that would eventually get us to Cripple Creek, our next intentional destination. So, off we went! Good thing we had 4Wheel drive – the road was in pretty rough shape, but again the sights along the way, were worth the effort –
We did make it into that valley and all the way over to Cripple Creek – an old gold mining town that at one time was the 4th largest city in Colorado! Right now it makes it’s living off of tourism and small stakes gambling.
Little did we know that the real adventure had yet to begin! We decided to head south on a road called “Shelf Road”. A friend had said she was going to be camping and climbing along that road, so we thought we’d give it a try and see if could maybe track her down. We never did find her (though I think we were pretty close), but we did find out why the road is named “Shelf Road”. It’s because the road is really just a single lane shelf running along the side of the mountain.
The road looking back –
The canyon looking down (gulp)-
The road looking ahead –
(it’s that swatch going along the mountainside, about half way down.)
Of course the most exciting part of the road is the fact that it’s only one lane, but is a two way road.
And a fitting end of truly amazing day!
And if you would like to see a bazillion more pictures of this day – (more or less in order!), check them out HERE!