This was my first day back on the trail since completing the section through the San Juan mountains on the 28th. Since then the horses have had several rest days, although that doesn’t mean that I was taking it easy! On the 29th, we spent most of the day on the road, which wasn’t very restful for any of us; I packed up our camp at Lobo Overlook and drove south to Pagosa Springs to pick up the dogs from the kennel where they were boarded while my mother has been in Idaho, and then we all turned around and drove north to Leadville, where I stayed at an RV park (Sugar Loafin’) that kindly agreed to let me set up camp in an overflow area with the horses. On the 30th I enjoyed some of my favorite spots in town in Leadville, and then on Sunday, July 1st, I moved the horses to a new camping spot north of town, on FR 714 off of highway 24. I set up their corrals then unhitched the camper from the trailer and drove into Silverthorne to meet my cousin Cheryl and pick up my mother. Cheryl and her family live in Boulder, and she had driven my mother from the Denver airport where she flew in from Spokane after spending the past week at her parents. It was great to see Cheryl and her baby Thomas, who will be having his first birthday soon. He is a very happy, easy baby, and we all enjoyed a stroll along the river and then had a nice dinner in a restaurant by the water, before Cheryl and Thomas headed back to Boulder and Mom and I drove to our campsite with the horses, arriving about 10pm.
Today I rode south again, skirting to the west of Leadville as I head back towards the area outside Winfield where I got blocked by snow and had to take an alternate on the Colorado Trail. I met my mother at the Mt. Massive trailhead area and camped along the road leading to the trailhead. Mt. Massive, as the name implies, is one of the big “fourteeners” that Colorado is so famous for, and I was concerned with the holiday coming up it might be a popular destination, which would possibly make finding a campsite big enough for our truck and trailer difficult, but we managed to find just enough space for the night.