Colorado '17

fishEH

Well-known member
Jan 26, 2009
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Lake Villa, IL
Inspired by the "No more epic trips" thread, I figured I'd toss some pics up of a trip my family and I took to Colorado in 2017.
5 people. 2 weeks. 3000+ miles. A 23year old manual transmission D1 and an inexperienced manual driver. What could go wrong!?

Day 1: Departed IL. Drove to Lincoln, NE and spent the night.
 

fishEH

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Jan 26, 2009
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Lake Villa, IL
Day 2: Lincoln, NE to Colorado Springs via Kansas. Hit some pretty dense fog. My wife loved the rolling hills landscape. Stayed at the Great Wolf as my wife's cousin has the hook up.
 

jprover2

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Apr 8, 2017
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Birmingham,Al
Looks like a good time. How long did you drive "timewise" each day, and how did the kids take riding each day. Reason I ask I have twin 6 yr old girls, and we're starting to make our trips longer.
 

fishEH

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Jan 26, 2009
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Lake Villa, IL
Looks like a good time. How long did you drive "timewise" each day, and how did the kids take riding each day. Reason I ask I have twin 6 yr old girls, and we're starting to make our trips longer.
I don't think we had any days over 8 or 9hrs in the truck. That said, we routinely drive 12-16hrs straight to Atlanta or Outer Banks with them and have since they have been little. NO DVD's either. 2 of the 3 got car sick for a long time, so we just told them to deal with it and look out the window. If you ask them its borderline child abuse, but we don't care.
 

fishEH

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Jan 26, 2009
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Lake Villa, IL
Probably should have stuck this in the first post, but oh well. I mapped out everything my wife and I both wanted to see/do on Google My Maps. Once I had all the pins dropped I formed a basic route. My wife not being a huge camper, and me wanting to get as far away from people as possible compromised on about a 50/50 split of camping and hoteling. That was before I realized just how terrified of our family being eaten by a bear she was. No amount of rationalizing would satisfy her, so concessions had to be made on my end if we were to stay married, LOL.
Looking back, my plans were too ambitious and a lot of on the fly decisions were made to keep on some sort of schedule.

Anyway.....Day 3: Colorado Springs to Great Sand Dunes NP.
Made an impromptu stop at Focus On The Family.... The Lion, Witch, and the Wardrobe!
Drove the skyline road in Canon City. My wife got her first little taste of narrow roads and steep drops. I told her she better get used to it or its going to be a looooooong trip! :D
 

fishEH

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Jan 26, 2009
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Lake Villa, IL
Day 3:
After the Skyline Road we dropped by Bishops Castle. This thing was really cool and the anti-government theme is strong here. Its basically a "castle" this guy built over the course of his life, by himself. Most of it is really cool, some of it is sketchy as hell and I wouldn't stand on it!
*This uploading three pics at a time is killing me. And its turning them all sideways, wth.
 

fishEH

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Jan 26, 2009
6,403
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Lake Villa, IL
Day 3:
After Bishops Castle we took some back roads to Medano Pass. The plan was to remote camp on the pass, then head into Great Sand Dunes NP the next day. The proposed campsite was in the vicinity of the deer pic. My wife freaked and we had to push through.
 

fishEH

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Jan 26, 2009
6,403
23
Lake Villa, IL
Day 3:
Came into Sand Dunes the back way. Checked for spots at the campground, yeah right. Tried another place but the road was washed out from recent rains. I pleaded my case that I had a Rover and could probably get there anyway, but no luck. Ended up staying at Zapata Falls about 20 minutes south. Decent place. Saw another Rover. did the slow roll past his campsite but he didn't even acknowledge. Shameful.
 

fishEH

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Jan 26, 2009
6,403
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Lake Villa, IL
Day 4: Sand Dunes NP to Lake City-ish
After not dying from a bear attack we explored GSDNP. Really a spectacular place. I've been to lots of sand dunes around Lake Michigan and also Jockey Ridge SP in NC, but there was something really special about having the Rockies as a backdrop.
Original plan was to drive to Wheeler Geological Area and camp there, but we were too late in the day to make that happen. Ended up finding a campground somewhere near Lake City.
 

fishEH

Well-known member
Jan 26, 2009
6,403
23
Lake Villa, IL
Day 5: More.
Got into Ouray kinda early. Did some grocery shopping, laundry, and hit the hot springs. Had dinner at the Ouray Brewery, and ice cream at a small shop.
 

jymmiejamz

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Callsign: KN4JHI
Dec 5, 2004
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Los Angeles, Ca
That was before I realized just how terrified of our family being eaten by a bear she was. No amount of rationalizing would satisfy her, so concessions had to be made on my end if we were to stay married, LOL.
My wife is the same when it comes to bears. She wants to have bear canisters and a bear resistant cooler if we are camping in bear country. My compromise is to just stay in the desert. I mean, is it really camping if you don't have a refrigerator?