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6-17-09 004_edited-1-2
Into La Plata Canyon


5/7/10, La Plata Canyon, CO - To sum today up - it was a lot of climbing.

After breaking camp at the head of Wildcat Canyon, Bob and Doc started leaning into their collars, and didn’t stop for the remainder of the day. Our camp last night was at the 6800 foot elevation; tonight, we’re at 8700 feet.  

Most of the morning we trekked up US 160, as it snaked along inside of a canyon. The grade was fairly slight (only 2 to 5%) but it just kept going up.  Bob and Doc did a great job, but they were pretty pooped by the time we pulled into camp.

The team attracted a lot of attention today; impart due to the article that ran in today’s copy of the Durango Herald. The story is linked above and I also included it on the ‘Media Coverage’ page.  All day long we were stopping to talk to folks.

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I can always tell when we hit 8000 feet in this part of Colorado, as the Gamble Oak seems to choke out most of the other trees.

Just before reaching the town of Hesperus, I met Loraine, who was the chief chuckwagon cook at the driving clinic, last week.  She invited me to stay at her place and rest the horses. Since they were due for a day off, I accepted. Shortly after turning onto La Plata Canyon Road, I met Jessie, who was also at the Driving Clinic.  She suggested that I park the wagon at her place, and keep the horses next door at Loraine’s. This seemed like the best suggestion, so I accepted.  Next we met Gerri (sp?), another participant of the clinic, and the three of us had a great time driving the four miles up the canyon road.

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Nestled into the La Plata Mountains. I drove up the canyon once before, about 25 years ago, and spent an afternoon picking wild blackberries.

After a nice evening, which included some great fish tacos, I’m settled in and about ready to call it a day.  Tomorrow, I plan on relaxing and maybe seeing if there are any trout in the La Plata river.