On Tuesday, my friend and fellow artist, Eldon Warren, invited me to ride along on a day trip into the Rockies. How could I resist?
It was a cool, but dry, sunny day. There were a few high clouds, but nothing threatening. It looked like we’d have a beautiful drive through mountains. A little after 10 am, we left his house and started west. Our plan was to visit the town of Nederland, and other little burgs along the way. I was stoked!
As the vehicle climbed higher up, we began to see snow on the ground and trees, and Eldon was driving on wet roads. The sky had grown heavy with clouds, and tiny flakes of snow flitted past the windows.
By the time we got to Rollinsville, the flitting flakes had turned into a full on snow storm, complete with winds that kept us in the car, except for brief moments when I jumped out and click off a photo, or shoot a few seconds of video. It was not a time for exploratory hiking. This shot of someone’s home, perched on a ledge just outside of town, should give you some idea of weather conditions, as we entered the town.
(I’m sure that I had a shot of Rollinsville, but cant find it.)
To call Rollinsville a town is a little misleading. With a population of less than two-hundred, that moniker seems slightly overblown. It is, however, a really lovely spot for lunch on a blowing, snowy day. So, we lowered our heads against the squall, and trudged toward the door of the Stage Stop.
On the step, stood a young woman, talking on a phone (Yes, it happens there, too.), with her jacket pulled tight around her, and a fox tail hanging from her behind. She smiled as we passed, and I said, “Good afternoon! Beautiful day for a day like this!” She laughed and said, “For a day like this!”, as we stepped through the door.
The Stage Stop is literally that. Residing in what was, originally, the toll gate for stage coaches running across Rollins Pass to Denver, Golden and other towns further down, the Stage Stop is now a rustic, eclectic place to grab a bite. Since we were the only people in the place, I’ll have to visit again for a review. I’m going to try for an interview with the owner for the YouTube channel, so stay tuned for that.
After lunch, we pressed on to the north, aiming for Nederland and Eldora. Both are lovely, in the way that tiny places are. They have their own quirkiness, and you find it in unlikely spots. For example, there arent many places where a sign like this would be appropriate.
From Nederland, we followed the Peak to Peak Highway to Ward, which sports the finest collection of rusting, antique automobiles I have ever seen. If you’re a restorer of cars, you need to make a trip to Ward, Colorado.
The rest of the day passed without incident, stopping for photos and videos whenever the urge hit us. Roads werent bad, and the snow let up. Following Lefthand Canyon Drive, we had intended to wind our way down into Boulder. The only hitch came when we reached a barricade, complete with State Trooper, that sent us up James Canyon Road and Overland Drive. It was detour that took us about twelve miles out of our way, and back to the Peak to Peak. Along the way, we passed through Jamestown, though, which is another place I’ll have to go back and visit.
Overall, it was a very good day. I had time with a good friend. We saw a lot of interesting places. Most of all, though, it was just good to get out of the city.
I put together an eight minute video, plus a slideshow of photos, from bits and pieces I shot along the way. They’re both on YouTube, at VagabondStew. Click over there, if you’d like to see. You’ll find others, too. If you do click over, it would be nice if you’d subscribe to the channel. There will be a lot of videos coming up, and I dont want you to miss any.
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