Zach and I found a perfect free camping site about 10 miles outside of Durango by a beautiful river and beneath some slightly towering canyon walls. We loved it so much, we stayed there two of our three nights in Durango. It was an established campsite with bathrooms and fire pits, the only catch was its location inside an open grazing area for cows. Our first indication was the large cow pie in the middle of our campsite. Zach quickly decided covering it with rocks would save us from bringing any inside the van with us. As we settled in for the evening, we heard a loud "mooooo" outside and peaked out to see a new friend was walking through our campsite. They moved through periodically, but must have gone to bed about the same time we did because I never heard them through the night.
|Our little home with the cows:)|
|My chef creating a gourmet meal!|
We had fun with the cows, but were ready to meet our friend, Taylor and have him show us around. The grocery store was on our way to the meeting place, so we grabbed some breakfast and very randomly ran into a woman I worked with in Colorado Springs. She had moved to Durango a few years ago, but we still remembered each other and had fun catching up! Leave it to me to find the one person I know in a new city:)
Taylor had gone to college in Durango before working with Zach at CityROCK in the Springs. He knew all the great climbing around there so we had a great time going on tour with him throughout Durango. The first day we bouldered at Sailing Hawks Park. I was able to get a few of the easier problems (V0-V1) and tired hard on some of the more difficult ones. Taylor and Zach were able to work on some of the harder moves and did really well. That evening, we went out to dinner and had a delicious pizza.
|Smelling the trees...|
|Trying hard on a V2!|
|Zach and Taylor climbing steep terrain with tiny holds.|
|Going for the 3 finger pocket (I could fit 4 fingers in:)|
|A little friend Taylor caught. He didn't want to leave us.|
|I sat above the bounder problem and enjoyed a rest.|
|This was a V4 I tried and got a few moves on.|
Friday, we decided to try sport climbing in a canyon near town. It was beautiful and the climbing was actually really fun. The only downside was how dirty the rocks were. Dirt ran off the top of the canyon and stuck to the rocks and holds we wanted to use. It made for some funny moments and dirty clothes. We were all climbing really well when a thunderstorm started building up near us. Being in the canyon didn't seem like the best idea during storm, so we packed up and headed out. We tried to go to a different area and keep climbing, but we were Eeyore that day and the storm cloud just followed us. Zach and I headed out to our campsite and settled in for the evening. We watched some Gilmore Girls episodes and enjoyed a calm evening with our cow friends:)
|Taylor on lead climbing through mud.|
|Beautiful blue skies before the storm moved in.|
When we woke up, we headed out to say goodbye to Taylor. It was so fun getting to hang out for a few days and we will miss our friend a lot! Thanks for showing us around!! Come out and climb with us soon Tay Tay!
|We miss you already, Tay Tay!|
It was finally time to head to Ridgeway, CO and get our bikes ready for the big trip! Our friends from Colorado Springs were meeting us there in the evening, but the bikes were a mess! We had been traveling on dirt roads for a week to find camping and our bikes showed it! There was a lovely little town park in the middle of town and we used our solar shower to rinse and wash our bikes. It was actually fun spending the day doing chores since we got to be outside with beautiful scenery. We were both a little nervous about our bike trip, but it was exciting getting ready for it!
We packed up our bikes and did a little test ride down a bike path. Zach had the tent and our sleeping bags stowed in trash bags wrapped tightly around them. He had them attached with bungie cords and they looked like rocket boosters! His system worked and even looked pretty cool to us:) My pannier bags were packed as well and we were ready for our next adventure!!