Next we moved to some property owned by a friend of Ron's. It was an adventure finding it since we had misunderstood something in the directions. We finally asked the mail person who knew right where to send us. She recognized the name of the development and told us we were about 10 miles off. The lots are 20 acres of wooded mountainside along dirt roads. When we arrived at the proper spot (up a hill, just past a red pole) there was a nice level spot just perfect for us. Since the road grader had formed quite a ridge of dirt along the edge of the road, Ron went to work with the shovel. At that point, the neighborhood association president came by and politely asked what he was doing. Good question. Eventually, we settled in and enjoyed perfect weather at 9000 feet.
This was in what is known as the South Park area of Colorado, west of Colorado Springs. Or maybe it would be the edge since South Park is more of a high meadow area between the mountains. We were conveniently located near several attractions I had never seen.
First stop was Florissant Fossil Beds which is known for two things, fossils and petrified redwood trees. There were lots of fossils to view in the temporary visitor center and I'm sure they'll be showcased better when the construction is finished.
But I came to see the redwoods (Sequoia affinis) - giant redwoods in Colorado? Wow!!
Not all the trees have been excavated just enough to satisfy the tourists. In fact Ron remembers when he was here before (40 years ago), there was a giant log exhibited. Although the rangers hadn't been around that long, they hypothesized that it had been reburied to protect it. Hum, seems kind of like cutting off your nose to spite your face. Or throwing out the baby with the bathwater. You get the idea.
Next we drove Eleven Mile Canyon - how pretty and with something for everybody. See the fishermen in this picture?
And people playing in the water here?
And I'm sure if I waited long enough, we would have seen rafters come though here.
Although the GPS didn't think so, the road dead ends at the dam. On our way back out of the canyon, we had our usual afternoon rain.
But it stopped by the time we reached our next stop. We had noticed a trail head with a packed parking lot and were told the trail led to a waterfall. After a short hike with rather treacherous hills, we reached our goal.
But that was not the draw for all the hikers who were jumping off the rocks into the pool.
I thought I'd try a video of one of the dare-devils. With all the gyrations this guy went through, I thought he was never going to jump. But jump he did, and I think you'll agree he was very impressive.
After climbing back up the hill, we noticed this obviously ignored sign.