Why the title?

"Pioneers take the arrows"

Oh, wait. I should be upbeat and taking arrows doesn't sound like an upbeat thing to say.

So, let me amend that statement.

It was courage and vision that led the pioneers to leave behind a comfortable, settled life and trek West to begin a new life in a new place. Many of those from the East that went West found a strength within themselves that they didn't see while they were in their old life. Instead of being one of those that just kind of went along with the others in the old life, they became leaders and visionaries in their new lives.

The sentiments of that last paragraph come from a favorite author, Louis L'Amour, in many of his books. So, I can't really say that it is an original thought from me. However, what he said is truthful.

Welcome to being a pioneer. Look ahead and ignore the "barking dogs" that give you negative opinions and comments. Louis L'Amour also spoke of the barking dogs.

In some of his stories, it was usually a father or older man telling a young boy how it was that when the Westward bound Conestoga wagons rolled through towns, the dogs came out to bark at them. His character then told the young listener that the barking didn't stop the wagons from going on to their destinations.

Following the advice of the Louis L'Amour characters, may we all forge ahead with our plans, after carefully considering all consequences and leave the "barkers" behind.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Back to Colorado Vacation in 2009

Sadly, it has been more than a month since I first started posting about our 2009 vacation to the Pagosa Springs, Colorado area. Back about mid-January, I posted two entries about the Sportsman’s Campground that is located about 18 miles NW of Pagosa Springs. It is way past time to get back to seeing beauty.

Hearkening back to the times when I read Louis L’Amour’s books, he wrote about the early pioneers/mountain men/explorers that just seemed to want to keep going over the next ridge or around the next bend in a trail. They were always in search of new things to see. In a sense, Jo and I are the same.

When we go on vacation, we tend to “camp” somewhere and then take little day trips to places in that area. For the most part, we like natural things instead of so much man-made tourist type attractions. So, the day after we arrived at Sportsman’s, we took a drive to see what was in the close proximity to the campground. That day, we drove up Colorado Forest Road 636, over into the La Poma Ranch area, and then on up to Williams Reservoir.

There wasn’t really any particular sight to go see, so we just drove around to see what there was and to take pictures. This particular entry will probably only touch on our drive up Forest Road 636, and touch on the La Poma Ranch area and Williams Reservoir on another day.

Prior to our vacation, I had done some research on the area, looking for waterfalls in particular. If I remember right, at the end of Forest Road 636, there was supposed to be access to one. The information I had on it was that to see the waterfalls, one had to cross the river, thus it was necessary to do that late in the season. I was later to find out from the Forest Service that they consider that waterfall too difficult to get to, so they were taking it off of their list of sights to see.

So, now I will share some of the sights we saw driving up that forest road. At a few places along the road, we parked and got out to take short walks around and take pictures. You may notice that the road has different widths. In places, it is wide enough for two vehicles to pass easily, and the further towards the end you go, the narrower it can become.



Mostly the area is populated with Pine and Aspen trees, and of course, wildflowers. At one point where we stopped, we ran across a sign that was a map of the area. Mostly, it shows various campgrounds in the area around the Williams Reservoir. There is one fairly large campground south of the Reservoir where there were a few sites with full hookups. I would imagine those might be hard to get at times.


There are dozens of streams and rivers in the Weminuchi Wilderness area, so I have no real clue as to which one this one is.


Then here are a couple of pictures of meadows, trees, and mountains in the background.



As usual in the forests, one comes across odd shapes in nature. It makes one wonder as to why this tree was formed as it is.


This one is of one of the walks we took. Looking in the shadow of the trees along the trail, you can see a small bridge.


And, to finish up our little drive and walking along Forest Road 636, we need to have one of the small things of beauty.


As a preview, my next vacation post will be of the La Poma Ranch area and Williams Reservoir.  If any of you have read Howard and Linda’s journals for some time, they workkamped at the La Poma Ranch.

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