Our blog is to keep family and friends informed of our motorhome journeys.
We have dreamed of this for many years and finally our dream has come true.
We are looking forward to many happy miles ahead.
One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things. Henry Miller.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Francisco Fort and Colorado Sand Dunes

21 August 2019

Today our objective was to visit Francisco Fort and Museum in La Veda,Co as the last time we were here the Museum was closed. It is a 50 mile drive up IH25 to exit 249 and west on Hwy 160 to Hwy 12 South. La Veta is a small, charming community in the Cuchara Valley and at the base of the Twin Peaks in the San Isabel National Forest.

Francisco Fort is an original adobe plaza built in1862 by Col John M Francisco, the sutler at Fort Garland and his business partner, Henry Daigre. They purchased 48,000 acres as part of the Vigil land grant. The fort/plaza has been in continuous use since it was abandoned a a fort in 1866 housing artifacts,collections of Hispanic and Native American cultures. Historic buildings on the property are 1890's saloon,1876 log school house,1855 blacksmith shop and other buildings.





1878 Cottonwood Tr



It was built as a one story structure enclosing three sides of a 100ft square with the 4th side  stockaded. Later it became the local Denver and Rio Grande Railroad terminal in 1876.

The Museum houses many displays pertaining to the history of the town and fort. Below are just a few.



Dining Room

School House 1876

Sutler's Store

Blacksmith Shop

Children's Playroom

Master Bedroom

Infirmary

Saloon




On the way up we stopped at the Ludlow Massacre Memorial Site at exit 27. I wrote about this on my blog about visiting the Pueblo Museum 27 July 2019. The massacre took place in 1914 and involved the Colorado Coalfield Strike.





After visiting La Veta we decided since it was only 60 miles away to visit the Colorado National Sand Dunes via Hwy 160 west and Hwy 150 north. Somehow I thought you could drive through the park only to find that this is only possible if you have a 4-wheel drive vehicle as many of the roads are primitive. However, the dunes are only a small portion of the park and visible from the entrance to the visitor center. Weather was getting cloudy and rain as we left the park teemed on us. The park features a camping ground, hiking and biking trails.






Did laundry on our return and later discovered that the water pump was not working. Anther project for John. He still believes the Owl is bringing us bad luck.

Tomorrow we leave for Kirkland AFB in Albuquerque.

Drive to Granada,Co & Bent's New Fort & Granada Relocation Center

20 August 2019

Our drive today took us up Hwy 350 to Hwy 50 to Granada,CO about 150 miles and 15 miles from the Kansas State Line.Drive takes you through the towns of La Junta, Las Animas, Lamar and finally Granada.

In Las Animas we stopped for photo for very impressive Bent County Courthouse. Located near the town is Bent's Old Fort which we visited in Sept 2011.

Bent County Courthouse

History Signage

History Signage


Our next stop was Bent's New Fort Site which only has stone remains. One look at the site, I decided to remain in the car. Did not want to encounter any snakes and it was 106 degrees. So pictures are compliments of John.

Signage

Stone Remains

Monument at New Fort Bent

Stone Remains

Stone Remains


Bent's New Fort was on the Arkansas River on the Mountain Route of the Santa Fe Trail (1849-1860).The fort was built by William Bent who had run Bent's Old Fort near La Junta. It was smaller and not successful as Indian trade was decreasing. In 1860 Troops began construction of Fort Wise later called Fort Lyon a mile SW of the New Fort. The site is on private property with access.

We then drove to site of WWII Granada Amache Relocation Center our last stop. After driving around the site with only one of the barracks, guard tower and water tower remaining we visited the Museum in Granada.

Entrance to Site


Display in Museum of Camp


Reconstructed Barracks

Site of Coop Store

Reconstructed Guard Tower

Another View of Barracks

Water Tower

Foundation of Barracks


This was the 10th largest city in Colorado with 7500 internees confined to a square mile. It took just over a year to construct the camp with over 1,000 workers including evacuees. The camp was surrounded by barbed wire and 8 guard towers. Inside the barbed wire it was like a large city that included a hospital, police and fire,post office, schools, churches and cemetery. Outside the wire a 16 square mile area ws used to  raise livestock and growing produce and crops.10 percent of the population volunteered for military service serving in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team,Women's Army Corps and Nurses Army Corps. Nearly 36 Nisei lost their lives in the War.Following the end of the war,the agricultural lands were reverted to private farming and ranching and the camp buildings were demolished or sold. For more info go to the www.amache.org site.


It was a long,hot day and got back to camp around 500PM.

Arrival Trinidad SP-Carpios Campground

19 August 2019

Our drive from Colorado Springs via IH25 to Trinidad, Co and Trinidad Lake SP Caprios Campgound was only 175 miles.

When saying goodby to Bill and Lorraine on Saturday, noticed some heart shaped rocks in their yard.Thanks friends for parting with them. Also on the drive to Trinidad to the west spotted what I feel looked like a heart shaped mountain, think it is referred to as Twin Peaks..oh well in the eyes of the beholden.

Heart Rocks for Hope

Heart Shaped Mountain


Upon arrival because of John's military status we were waived on the daily park pass of $8/day.Carpios Campground site was $39/day with only 50amp electric..Thank goodness for the 50amp as it is very hot. Had to maneuver to find spot to fill water tank. The faucets are in certain sites. They do have full hook up sites, but even booking back in February we were unable to get one.We are definitely not SP campers. The camp does have nice laundry and bathhouse. Friendly checkin. Lake seemed low.Campground is 6 miles from town of Trinidad off Hwy 12. As usual, no wildlife spottings except for rabbits.

Carpios #29

Trinidad Lake

Trinidad Lake

Cute Bunnies


Sunset


John has list of around 6 places he wants to visit while here. We were supposed to be here a week, but since we completed his list by Wednesday, decided to move on to ABQ and Kirkland AFB on Thursday. Good thing as water pump quit working. Another issue with which to deal on our next stop. We got refund for early departure.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Last Days at AF Academy

09 -18 August 2019

Last days at AF Academy spent getting together with friends, doing errands, drive up to USAFA Farish Rec area and planning our continuing journey through April 2021. Yes, I know for many of you this is difficult to understand the planning ahead, but it has worked for us for the past 10 years. Besides it projects a certain amount of optimism and events for which to look forward. Will do another blog once we have finalized  where we are traveling.

09 August

We drove up to Castle Rock to visit with friends Bill and Lorraine whom we met at Nellis in 2014 and part of our Nellis group.

Bill was the Academy Band Director for some 15 years before retiring. They suggested we would like the Castle Cafe and a good choice it was, so much so we want to return while here. Delicious home cooking with a varied menu. John had the fried catfish with homemade chicken noodle soup slaw and sweet potato fries. I had the baked salmon with spinach and tomatoes. Bill enjoyed the Friday special of fried cod and Lorraine got her ususal fried chicken steak with vegetables. We were so full had to pass on dessert. Next time..

13-14 August

Friends Max and Caron drove up for 2 nights at campground from Pueblo. They are also part of our Nellis Group. Due to the campground being full they could only get the 2 nights, but happy they at least got the 2 nights. On the 14th we were invited along with Bill and Lorraine for dinner at their site. Caron fixed very yummy enchiladas and spanish rice.Lorraine brought dessert and I a fruit salad. It was so good and we had a lot of laughs and good conversation. Will see both couples at Nellis in December. After eating and enjoying the enchiladas was told that the meat was elk from one of Max's hunting trips. My first experience.

Lorraine,Caron,Max, John & Bill


After dinner John and drove around the campus looking for wildlife, but only saw a lonely deer at the back of the cemetery.Have yet in our 4 visits seen a bear. Maybe it is too hot.




When Max and Caron got home they sent photos of deer in their backyard eating on the crabapple tree.




15 August

Finally got our car back after a week for some minor repairs involving a small mishap in the commissary parking lot. That is all I am going to say on the matter.

16 August

Today we drove up to the Farish area as I had always been curious. The drive takes you west on Hwy 24 through the town of Woodland Park, passing through Manitou Springs and cutoff to Pike's Peak both of which we have visited on previous trips. It is a very nice Recreational area with 3 lakes, cabins, tent sites and maybe a few small RV sites..definitely not for big RV's and 5th wheels. Once again no wildlife spottings except for a chipmunk sunning on a rock.







On the way back we stopped at Costco and Whole Foods. Saw two deer in someone's yard. Sure hope they don't get in traffic.




17 August

HAPPY 47TH  DAUGHTER HOPE.  A  JOYOUS DAY WHEN  YOU WERE BORN...OUR ONLY  TEXAN BORN.

In the afternoon we drove up once again to have  dinner with  Bill and Lorraine at Castle Cafe. John and Bill had the Buffalo meatloaf, I the catfish and  Lorraine the usual. Took some peach cobbler home for dessert. See you in  December..Safe travels.

18 August

Today is get ready to go day..laundry, chores etc. Tomorrow we head to Trinidad SP for a week. We have enjoyed our stay here and hope to return in the future.

Had to post this flyer that I saw on the RV newsletter. Very Clever.