Day Eight – Thursday, 20 May
Leaving UT for CO – Driving to Lower Piedra Campground
We break camp and head East and South on 24 and 95, before heading via Blanding on 191 to Monticello and East on 491, crossing into Colorado. Staying on 491 until we pass Dolores, we head on via 184 and 160 to Durango.
We stop for lunch in Durango at the Serious Texas BBQ South restaurant.
After a great lunch (we both had a brisket sandwich with a cold one,) we backtrack a bit to restock food and beverage provisions at the local Walmart, before heading back onto 160 and via Bayfield to the Lower Piedra Campground.
We get there early enough, with only one or two other campers around. After setting up (I opt for my ENO DoubleNest hammock with Glenn’s underquilt and his ProFly tarp,) I walk down to the Piedra river and sit down to listen to the water for a while. While I am at the river, Glenn puts up his ENO DoubleNest and is napping…
We gather some firewood and settle in next to the firepit for the evening, cooking some ribeyes over the fire. After dinner and some cold ones, we turn in for the night. As goes without saying, I sleep like a baby again.
Day Nine – Friday, 21 May
Rainy day at Lower Piedra – relaxing and winding down
We get up to a wet and rainy morning. First thing we do is put out our awnings to have some protection from the rain and make coffee and breakfast (eggs and bacon) in the dry area underneath. After this, we relax under our awnings for a while, before deciding to head back to our respective shelters and just nap through the rain.
We both fall asleep quickly again, and I wake up midway through the afternoon, with Glenn sitting under the awning again. I get up and join him. It’s too wet for a fire, with our gathered firewood having been rained on pretty much all day, so we just settle in under the awnings, have some cold ones, and make some freeze-dried backpacking meals for dinner.
With the rain not letting up, we just retire back into our shelters, and I listen to an audiobook for a while while laying in the hammock, before calling it and getting on with sleep.
Days Ten and Eleven – Saturday, 22 May & Sunday, 23 May
The next morning, after a night of almost constant rain, we just pack up camp (wet…,) and head out back onto 160 toward Pagosa Springs. We stop at the Lone Spur Café for breakfast; I have a plate of excellent Huevos rancheros and some coffee.
After breakfast, we take the obligatory “another great trip in the box” selfie, and head off toward the East on 160. In Del Norte, we split up, with Glenn continuing on 160 home in Republic, Missouri, while I head North on 112 and 285 toward Denver and up I-76 to I-80.
I stop in Ogalalla, Nebraska at the Super 8 for the night and take a long overdue shower, before sleeping like a log. I get up early the next morning and head on home the final approximately 5.5h via I-80, I-680, and I-29.
After arriving home, I post a quick note with a funny pic to let everybody know I am safely back home…