~Friday, October 9, 2020~
Day 117 (Travel Day)
As I write this morning, I’ve got my cup of Joe and the fireplace on. It’s been nice being able to run it with hookups these last few days. Normally we can only run it off of the generator when dry camping. So it’s been nice to be plugged in being able to run it for the ambiance and not just for the heat. Even though we’ve been at 7,000 feet, the trailer has only dipped down to the 50’s at night. 50’s we can tolerate without the fireplace or propane heater. But with the 40’s like we endured in the Cedar Breaks area a few weeks ago, we had to run the heater (at least in the mornings). That’s when the outside temperatures were around 21 degrees but we were also at 10,000 feet.
The trailer tanks are full after our 4 days here at Ridgway Campground, thanks to our furry dog Sadie. Our tanks only hold 40 gallons each and think on Day 1 of being here, I must have used 7 or 8 gallons alone, just to get the 2 weeks of boondocking dust off of her. So to the dump station we go. It’s sure great when the dump stations are conveniently located inside the park and no wait. If there isn’t a line of RV’s behind us, we definitely take advantage of doing a few extra things, like rinsing the black tank and after rinsing the black tank, adding Dawn dish liquid along with 2 gallons of water down the toilet to let that slosh around a bit while driving to our next location. I know, I know, TMI, but it works!
We had already driven the Million Dollar Highway (Highway 550) from Ouray to the Animas Forks Ghost town the other day, but not with the trailer. Jeff had very little sleep last night as he worried about taking this road that has been labeled as one of the most dangerous highways in the world to drive.
Driving from Durango to Ouray wouldn’t be as scary since you’re driving against the mountain side, but driving the opposite direction are sheer cliffs with no guard rails/barriers. There are even sections that appear undercut from the asphalt above. Jeff’s thought for the whole 45 minute drive was to just focus, go slow and try to drive on the center dividing line as far to the left as possible. He did a great job. Once we got out of the hairy section, we had another hour or so to get to our new site in Durango, called the Oasis RV Resort and Cottages.
Super friendly staff, we were guided to site #9 (a corner nestled spot among some trees) by one of the camp hosts. He meant well, trying to tell Jeff how to back into the site. After 2 tries, Jeff decided to do it his way and boom, we made it in perfectly. It’s really a nice park with many cute cottages/cabins and of course RV sites-some very open and exposed, and a few like ours with more landscaping surrounding it.
After we got settled in, we let Sadie resume her bone gnawing entertainment from yesterday while we planned out the rest of our month here in Colorado with the focus primarily in Colorado Springs and Fort Collins. These are 2 cities we are very interested in looking into for our next home. We shall see. Looking forward to spending time too with our niece Katelin in Colorado Springs. Of course we needed to plan out what we wanted to see and do in the Durango area while we’re here for the next 4 days. One of the highlights is the Cascade Canyon Express Railroad Tour, so we booked a trip there for tomorrow afternoon. It finally dawned on us that since we started this adventure in June, that we really haven’t spent much money on excursions, so didn’t feel guilty for this little splurge.
The sunset was gorgeous tonight thanks to a few clouds adding to the drama.
On our walk, we were approached by 2 young boys, excited to see Sadie, and asked if they could pet her. Their mother named Katie and her friend Tara are traveling the U.S. in a rented minivan over a 5 week period, staying at VRBO’s along the way. Amazing what they are fitting into such a short time. Katie is from Naples, Florida and Tara from, of all places, Greenville, South Carolina which is one of the cities we are considering moving too. We flew there 2 Octobers ago to really check out the scene and the real estate, and fell in love with it. Now we have a connection. And we plan on going to Florida in January, so maybe we’ll connect with Katie when we’re there. We’ve met the nicest people on our nightly walks at nearly every campground we’ve stayed.