Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Fri, July 26 to Sun, July 28, 2013: Sekrit Camping

Ever since I moved to Colorado, I've envied people who know the secret amazing places to go, devoid of the flocks of front range residents who swoop in every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  I always imagined going to these places, far away from the crowds that infiltrate the easy drives and nearby parks.

My guy knows many of these places, having apparently spent a decent amount of his adolescence looking for the same thing I've wanted since arriving here: space, and quiet.  Luckily, he wanted to share this place with me.

We headed out on Friday afternoon and made it there just as the sun was beginning to set.  I somehow managed to forget my camera (which has become a common occurrence when I travel with him...), but he brought his and let me borrow it whenever I wanted.  This was the sunset view from our camping spot...
 ...and this was our view in the morning.  We were literally camped in a small clearing perched on the edge of a mountain, overlooking other mountains.
 We spend the day wandering around with our dogs, the crisp air and rolling oceans of green penetrating my soul.

 There were wildflowers scattered around in the meadows, and I loved their brilliant little touches of color.
 The pine cones on one particular type of tree were a brilliant reddish purple:
 Indian Paintbrush:
 At one point in our wanderings, we arrived at a hillside that had several thistle plants growing on it.  I don't think Brennan knew what he was getting himself into, or exactly how obsessed with thistles I am.  Furry honey bees were dancing along the flowers, weaving and diving and picking at the delicate purple tendrils that curled around their legs.

There was a small lady bug hiding in the leaves of this flower, can you see it?

 At one point, I had taken so many pictures of the thistles and bees that he made some comment to the effect of, "slow down" or "you take enough pictures yet?"
 To which I replied something to the effect of, "enough pictures?  Never!"  And I continued following the bees around with the camera, and I loved it.  (And was later totally validated by the number of beautiful scenes I captured!)
 These flowers grew near a campsite that was nestled in a grove of pine trees.
 While the pine trees looked cozy and protective, I became more and more convinced that we had the best campsite in the entire area.

 As we made our way back to our campsite, a couple of birds chatted with us:

There is a rock ridge that rises out of the meadows and served as a pretty good landmark for finding our way back to our site.  We climbed up the ridge to check out the views, then headed back down to our beautiful little area.
A few people stopped at our campsite wanting to see the view.  While I understood their desire to share what I concluded was the best view in the place, it felt kind of invasive having them there.  Sometimes I wish that I could be somewhere in the middle of nature with nobody else around for a while, and that was a day for me when that wish was strong.  It was mostly fulfilled, though, and I love knowing that this place exists.  Now that I've been there, I find myself wondering even more what other secret places Colorado has been hiding from me. :)