Thursday, July 11, 2013

Buena Vista

I am writing this on a picnic table at a pretty little park with a pond at the corner of Hwy 24 and County Road 306 in Buena Vista, CO.  It is across the street from the library, and apparently I am spiriting away their free wi-fi.  I came into town to go to the City Market, where I found 4 pieces of fried chicken for 4 bucks, a bargain any way you look at it.  This park is a great place for lunch.  Or just relaxin'. 

Unfortunately I lost almost all the pictures when my laptop crashed.

There's a couple from Texas walking their blue heeler, a half dozen tiny kids learning how to paddle their equally tiny kayaks on the pond, some other kids fishing and playing on a swing.  I could profitably while away the afternoon here, if the benches weren't so hard.  Should have thrown a chair in the back of the truck before I left camp.  A couple of big motorhomes could park on the side street. 

Heck, they could even charge up their batteries here.  There's power outlets on the pole behind me. 

Quite a friendly place.

I was headed up to Cottonwood Pass on 306 the other day, when just a little past Rainbow Lake I saw a cut in the bushes on the downhill side to the left.  It didn't look like I could get the trailer in there, so I proceeded on a half mile or so to the Forest Service’s Collegiate Peaks campground.  I found a spot, though the place was crowded.  But as I was setting up my mind kept going back to that little cut in the bushes.  So ultimately I just dropped the trailer and went back there.  Turned out to be 6 or 7 sites along a little stream.  Completely deserted, completely free.  Lots to trees to scrape against if you've a mind to, but they are avoidable if you know what you are getting into.  You could even get a Class C and a toad in there when it's empty like this.  But the problem is you can't see what you are getting into until you are well into it.  Best to explore first in a smaller vehicle.

Very nice, very quiet, very shady, a stream running past and singing you to sleep at night.  My kind of place.  There's even a 4 bar Verizon connection when I use the Yagi antenna.  To bad about the fire ban.  I'd really like to cook a steak here.  Tonight will be my third night, and nobody has turned in here yet.  Unbelievable.

Four miles back toward town I passed Cottonwood Hot Springs, a kind of mom and pop little spa.  I misinformed a few people about this place in the past, calling it Princeton Hot Springs.  That is another place altogether, on another road, and a lot more of a commercial complex.  Cottonwood is just a small motel with a few camping places and 5 pools ranging from 95 to 105 degrees.  Fifteen bucks gets you an all day pass, from 8 am to 10 pm.  I showed up at 10 this morning and had the whole place to myself for an hour, when maybe half a dozen others came in. 

The only surviving picture from the day.

Let me see if I can describe the rigors of my day.  First I got in the mild pool, quickly moving on to a hot one.  Then I got a cold cup of water and lay back on a lounge chair in the dappled shade of a tree, and let the cool breeze tease me dry.  Somewhere in there a short nap caught up with me.  Then I got back in the pool again, talked to some folks, then back to the napping place.  Then I tried the sauna for a bit.  Then back in the hot pool, followed by another snooze.

It's a harsh regimen, I know.  But somebody has to do it.

There's plenty of parking for cars, considering the lack of traffic.  There's a small campground that will accommodate tents and small campers, but as they don't have electricity I didn't look at it.  If you have a larger RV or a toad, just past the entrance is a huge gravel parking lot with a trail at the back that leads down into the springs.

Well, that's it.  As you can see, I've been busy here.  I may be able to stand it for a few weeks, unless something better comes along.

1 comment:

Jimbo said...

That campground you spotted next to the stream sounds like my kind of site. Even better when you have it all to yourself.