“Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt.”
This past weekend I got married in the mountains to my lovely wife. As I go on this new path of my life I wanted to get out and explore new land and new water to fish with my wife so, we set out for an epic adventure north through the Colorado mountains.
Our journey started Saturday morning leaving Rio Rancho New Mexico near Albuquerque. As we drove north, we enjoyed the fresh air and the amazing views listening to country music. Once we got into Colorado the mountains got bigger and more intriguing…
We filled up in Center Colorado and headed into the Rio Grande National Forrest. As we climbed switchbacks over Honeymoon Pass, we made our descent down into a valley. The trek down wasn’t too crazy but you could feel the weight of the RIG baring down on us from the steep downhill slop over big rocks. As we crossed the Veil, we made it to camp near a running stream. I could not resist putting a line in the water …. I caught numerous Blown Trout for dinner that night. We were 92 miles into the Rio Grande National Forrest and no one around – just like we like it.
There is just something about the night sky in the mountains that makes you feel like your part of something bigger than just the day-to-day grind….
As we woke up on that Sunday I fished and made some coffee and enjoyed the small critter noises all around that our ears were taking in. Around 9 AM we left camp and headed north, we passed through the boundary of the Gunnison National Forrest over Mexican Pass. After another 90 miles from camp, we got to Gunnison CO for some whiskey and supplies. Was not really impressed with this small Colorado town (too many tourists, and too much like a big city for us) …. But we continued to our next camp.
We entered the Forrest far west of town and headed north to Pitkin CO for a bit to eat and to fill the truck up with gas. We aired down outside of Pitkin and climbed up the Rockies to Cumberland Pass. As we reached the top at 12,045ish ft in elevation, stopped and enjoyed the wonderful views and looked at the other peaks that Colorado has to offer. As we set off down the mountain to Tincup CO I left a little piece of me at the top of that mountain.
We entered Tincup CO at 10,000 ft around 5 PM, as we drove through this small ghost town you must admire the 1800s structures and be amazed at how the people lived back in the 1800’s.
I pushed north of Tincup deeper into the Gunnison National Forrest and found a remote camp near a stream where the fishing was good! The weather held but a little windy at 10,036 ft. We broke out the Heated shower for a fresh night’s sleep.
The next morning, we set off to climb Tincup Pass to St Elmo’s. The trail up Tincup Pass was easy in my RIG as we climbed over big rocks and in altitude. Once we hit the top at 12,152 ft you get a sense that we humans are tiny in this world of ours. After about an hour of enjoying the company of some folks and a Wedding/Trek celebration shot of some Colorado whiskey, we headed down the mountain into San Isabel National Forrest to St Elmo’s before the rain set in. St Elmo’s is a very small ghost town with a small single store, we did find a very nice silver ring that my wife had to have. Then is dumped rain lucky we got off the pass by them or it would have been an interesting trek down.
We set off south after our 4-hour trek over the mountain and headed to Salida CO for some lunch. after lunch we continued south to New Mexico near the border of Colorado into the Carson National Forrest. We made camp along a Trout stream in New Mexico where the trout are abundance eating off the topwater. So, I took out the flyrod and did a little dry flyfishing before we made camp. My wife was making a delicious dinner while I was soaking in the stream that I had to take advantage of! The night was amazing next to the campfire with my wife wishing I was rich so I didn’t have to come back to work… but those memories that we had together will not be lost.
The next morning we set off home to enjoy our future together and plan the next trip next weekend!
“The choices we make lead up to actual experiences. It is one thing to decide to climb a mountain. It is quite another to be on top of it.”
So in 4 days we went through four National Forests , over four mountain passes and camped in some super remote places.