Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Trinadad, CO

Yep, we traveled from the southwest corner of New Mexico to the Colorado border in only 12 days!  No wonder I felt like we were rushing and I fell behind in the blog.

We crossed the line into Colorado and decided to spend the big bucks for one night at Trinadad Lake State Park.  Unlike the very reasonable prices of the New Mexico parks, Colorado's prices are enough to give you sticker shock.  First of all they charge you both the day use fee PLUS the camping fee.  This seems just wrong to me.  I think that you are either camping or using the park just for the day.  Checking on their website, the day use fee is $7 - $9 a vehicle.  They don't charge for the towed vehicle as long as it is towed in.  Camping ranges from $10 for a primitive site (do they have any of those?) to $26 for full hookups (plus the day use fee, don't forget.)

To add insult to injury, Trinadad is a Corps of Engineers lake which usually guarantees economical prices.  BUT Trinadad and three in the Denver area are run by the state parks so economy goes out the window.

Trinadad State Park is on the low end of the day use fee at $7 and we took the cheapest site at $16.  I know some of you are thinking $23 for a table and grill (no hookups) isn't bad, but it's way over our comfort level.

However if you pay by the view, ours would be a million dollar site.  This is what we saw out our front window.

Those are the Sangre De Cristo (Blood of Christ) Mountains, so named for the red color they appear at sunrise.  And I did mean to get up for sunrise - really I did.

We took a drive around downtown Trinadad.  I didn't get a picture of them, but some of the streets were paved with bricks.  Trinadad is VERY hilly with some beautiful Victorian architecture like the museum building pictured here.

I spotted this bird in a cage as we drove by and thought, 'What the heck is that?"

Well I should have recognized the miners' canary who saved lives by giving his own.

If I had noticed this nearby sculpture, I would have certainly realized the connection.

Back at the lake, we had a nice visit with our friend Lloyd whom we met through the WINs years ago.  He happened to pull in right behind us after driving 200 miles to our 35.  So we're a little slow.  He took a hookup site on the higher rent side of the lake and had a nice view of Fisher's Peak, a landmark on the old Santa Fe trail.
(Our RV was just to the right, out of this picture.)


  1. What a view!
    So, you should make it up to the Denver area in a few weeks or so?

  2. We're headed for Trinidad in a couple of days but I think we'll just stay at Walmart. You do have gorgeous views though.

  3. Pushing the boat now and again is worth it especially with those views. I would be there in the evenings with a glass of beer looking at where the Sante Fe trail is and be back in time. Well worth it.

  4. Price is one reason we don't go to CO. St. Pks. We stopped by that one when we were on the NM tour a few years ago and when they told us the cost we turned around and left.

  5. That day use fee is insane. Guess they're trying to milk every penny out of you. Even with the great view, that would be a burr under my saddle. :c(

  6. That museum is the Bloom House. We helped put its contents into storage several years ago so they could shore up its foundation.
    I wonder if parks in other states receive state funds? In Colorado, all income comes from user fees and a few grants.