Our first stop in Pagosa Springs was at the Visitor's Center. We were given some excellent information and once we got Mellie all set up we decided to head for Treasure Falls, the number one item on the list and just 15 miles northeast on Highway 160. You can see part of the waterfall from the parking area. The hike is just a quarter mile, but quite steep. We took advantage of the benches along the way, read the interpretive signs on the trail and walked slowly while photographing flowers.
We still had time to drive up to Wolf Creek Pass and see how road would be for Mellie as we continued on to South Fork. It would be fine! No sharp switchbacks (well, maybe one). The lanes were wide and there were pullouts to allow faster drivers to pass us. On the way we spotted one pullout that looked interesting. We thought the site had good sunrise potential so we returned the next morning just as the sun was coming up over the eastern edge of the valley.
We thought we had enough time left to explore one more spot. We underestimated the time we would need!! Surprised? Surely you are not. It takes a lot longer when you keep stopping to capture wonderful shots. Besides, it was a dirt road and you know how I drive Ms. Prissy Prius on such roads. The road we chose was CR 326 at the Blanco Basin Turnoff. We did not complete the full 40 mile round trip drive. I will go back through the whole road in the future.
The next day we decided to try the drive to Williams Creek. This drive starts on Piedra Road (CR 600) which after about 22 miles becomes FS 631. There is another turn on FS 640 to reach the Williams Creek Reservoir. On the return we went back to FS 631 and turned right towards the Weminuche Wilderness.
When we reached the end of FS 631 we came upon a huge semi with a flat bed trailer. There were guys just standing around and with a bit of inquiry we found out that they had delivered a HUGE piece of equipment to the farm down below in the valley. We could hear the shovel working away. As we finished up our shooting (about an hour) and headed back down the road we saw that they had loaded the shovel onto the truck. My first thought was to get in front of them or I would be stuck on a narrow county road going even slower than my usual 15 mph. Oh, so not correct!! I had barely driven 5 miles and I could hear this truck barreling down the road behind me. This truck was speeding!!!! I quickly picked up my pace and saw a bit more distance between us but still had to keep up my speed. Only later did I realize that I should have found a wide spot in the road and let him pass me. Oh, wide spot? Not easy to find. And, we would have been chewing his dust for days. Finally, we managed to pull off a side road and slightly up a hill. Tom jumped out to try and get a 'safe' head-on shot of what I now thought was a BEAST! We then followed him at a safe and relatively dust free distance until we got into town.
I end this post with two personal images. First is Tom in his usual stance as he looks at a possible shot. I just so love this guy! I stay with the car as he steps out. I monitor oncoming traffic and make sure we are both safe. Second, a photo of our home, Mellie. The most common question we get is, "Where are you?" On this day we were parked next to the Blanca River about 9 miles south of Pagosa Springs.
Thanks for sharing our adventures.