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Poised For the Sneffels Range


6/7/10, Dallas Creek, CO - The team put in a good day and we’re currently at the junction of State route 62 and the Dallas Creek National Forest Access Road.

My first stop, after leaving camp, was 3 miles down the road for coffee. The previous evening I had been invited to stop and see some folks and rest the team.  Since it was already getting warm, the boys enjoyed the rest, while I went in for some coffee and socializing.

All day long, I kept meeting some real nice people, including Max, a good friend of my long time pal Chris.

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Stopping for lunch by Ridgway State Park.  It was just north of here that was the setting for the gun battle in the latest ‘Top Hand’ story that I wrote - ‘That’s How the West Was

In the afternoon, I stopped for generator gas and beer in the town of Ridgway. (If you like a good fresh tasting lager beer, try ‘211 - Steel Reserve’).  Not only is it real good, it’s also pretty cheap. While in Ridgway, the Town Marshall drove by several times and waved. He also did a good job at keeping traffic moving safely around the wagon.  I found a pretty good camping spot along the road, near the junction with the National Forest Access road. Not long after I set up, Ralph, who lives on the adjacent property, gave me an electrical plug-in and a corral for the horses.  So, right now, we’re all sitting in Fat City.

Ralph also provided me with a place to store the trailer before I head up the Access Road. Converting into a ‘Lean Mountain Mode’ will help out a lot before heading into the hills.  But this time, I’m also going to carry a sheet of plywood and a rope for crossing cattle guards. And, remembering Bill’s bony back, I’m going to throw a saddle in the wagon too.

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The team munching grass alongside the road.  Across the road, there was a nice spring, that was piped under the road, with the outlet inside the playpen.  Before dark, I moved the team into Ralph’s corral, via a gate in the fence line.

My plan for crossing the cattle guard, is to wire down the sheet of plywood, walk the team across, one at a time, then use a single horse to pull the wagon across the cattle guard with a rope.  Since the cattle guard is 6 feet wide, it would take two sheets of plywood to just drive them across.

The access road is about 10 miles long, during which I should climb almost 2000 feet in elevation, to about 9500 feet above sea level. After I set up camp, I plan on riding Bill up to a meadow above my beaver pond and let the other two amigos tag along.  Since I can’t get the horses down to the pond, they’ll have to stay tied in the meadow while I fish,

Since cell phone and internet is nonexistent around here, the only way I’ll have to post this blog tomorrow, is if I find an unsecured Wifi on the way up. We’ll see!