We didn't go as far as Leadville, but turned off on No Name Rd and headed up the trail. About halfway the dirt road turned into a rocky steep incline, reminiscent of our trail up to Hanging Lake. The 1980 jeep was switched (manually) into 4-wheel drive and off we went, climbing rocks for about a half a mile
. We parked and went about another half mile on foot, armed with bottles of water and granola courtesy of Timberline Tours. What an amazing panorama we were met with. We were at about 11,500 ft, right above the tree line, and had a magnificent view of the surrounding mountains and the White River National Forest. After climbing a large pile of rocks we pretty much felt like we were on top of the world. The rocks were an interesting addition, as there were no peaks anywhere close by that they could have come down from. The best guess was they were deposited by a glacier at some point in time. Regardless of how they got there, they not only afforded a great view but were themselves quite interesting to look at.
The four hours went by way too fast and we were returned to the condo. Still feeling energetic we walked over to the Columbine Bakery & Cafe for a late lunch. I had a delicious pear salad and a French heart cookie for dessert. We left before we could be tempted to buy any more treats and walked around Nottingham Lake and back to the condo via the path along the river, stopping for a brief break just to enjoy our surroundings. The temperature was in the low 70's, no humidity, and the Eagle River was making beautiful music. Just made us wonder why on earth we were going back to 100+ temperatures and high humidity in Houston. Another beautiful day in Colorado.
Today Theo, with Timberline Jeep Tours, picked us up at the condo and we headed out for an off-road jeep adventure into the mountains. We headed west out of Avon and then south on I24. This is the road that is closed closer to Leadville due to a sink hole on the highway. The highway had been built over an old railroad tunnel that had been filled in with dirt. This dirt filling got wet and froze, and all was fine until the recent warm spells caused the water to thaw, which turned the dirt to mud which flowed out of the tunnel, leaving a void that eventually collapsed.