CK5 Network
Become a member of the largest online community for Chevy K5 Blazer, Suburban and C/K series truck owners!

Colorado trip 2021

r3dd0g

1/2 ton status
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 14, 2006
Posts
2,033
Reaction score
3,507
Location
Chandler, AZ
After a very busy first half of the year Amber and I finally managed to take a vacation. We really didn't plan anything, the forests in AZ were closed (although they opened just before we left) so we decided we'd wheel in Colorado for a week. The only plan was to hit the San Juan forest first, then head North from there.

The first day was just driving from AZ to San Juan. We hit the trail that starts behind the Purgatory Ski Resort and found a campsite:

IMG_20210710_193900514_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210710_193925417_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_091321964_HDR.jpg


We got up on Sunday and headed out to do some sightseeing in San Juan dragging the trailer along with us.

IMG_20210711_151810231_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_154040677_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_154336711_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_155041595_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_155056159_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_160911174_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_174340704_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_180004935_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_180353790_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210711_180842745_HDR.jpg


After a long day of wheeling we found another campsite to crash at for the night.

IMG_20210712_091732345_HDR.jpg
 

r3dd0g

1/2 ton status
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 14, 2006
Posts
2,033
Reaction score
3,507
Location
Chandler, AZ
We got up Monday and headed for the Uncompahgre National Forest. We've only ever wheeled in San Juan so this was new to us.

We did see a former UA participants rig at Purgatory while we were airing up.

IMG_20210712_112659306_HDR.jpg


We didn't really have a plan outside of going in at the South end of Uncompahgre and coming out the North end.

IMG_20210712_164616019_HDR.jpg


Monday night campsite in Uncompahgre:

IMG_20210712_183339892_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210712_200637606_HDR.jpg


We cruised around on some side trails as we were heading North, saw quite a few deer:

IMG_20210713_105818351_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210713_120049025_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210713_131111105_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210713_140508818_HDR.jpg


We took a wrong turn somewhere in Uncompahgre and ended up in Delta rather than Gateway (we were having GPS issues). Drove by a cool junkyard with some old cars/busses/trucks:

IMG_20210713_143026426_HDR.jpg


We had planned on staying another night in Uncompahgre but once we ended up in Delta we decided to head for Grand Mesa National Forest instead. It was very beautiful, but also crowded and mosquito infested:

IMG_20210713_160433201_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210713_161132240_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210713_161740671_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210713_162202395.jpg


IMG_20210713_163302879.jpg


IMG_20210713_164050385_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210713_173546092.jpg


We got quite a bit of rain and drove around for several hours looking for a campsite before finally ending up in this one. It was a terrible spot, but it made for a good picture.

IMG_20210713_200117330_HDR.jpg


So many mosquitos.
 

r3dd0g

1/2 ton status
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 14, 2006
Posts
2,033
Reaction score
3,507
Location
Chandler, AZ
It was raining when we got up to pack, so we just headed out towards Gunnison National Forest and grabbed some breakfast in Collbran.

IMG_20210714_105656994_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210714_124047888_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210714_130631969_HDR.jpg


We drove straight through Gunnison to Carbondale to visit our friends at ORD. We'd never been there and thought it would be neat to stop by. We didn't have plans for the night so Stephen invited us to stay at his house and have a shower (we also took Stephen and some of the ORD guys out to dinner as a thank you). We set up the tent in his yard to dry it out and decided we'd just sleep there for the night .

IMG_20210715_073626874_HDR.jpg


When we got up the next day we decided it was probably time to start heading back towards AZ since it was Thursday and we had to work Sunday. We opted to head towards Gateway and get back into Uncompahgre to see if we could find the trail we were looking for before. This was the "road" we found, lots of rain the day before so it really didn't look like a road. This was a sign of things to come.

IMG_20210715_115015624_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_115703676_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_120439875_HDR.jpg


After more GPS issues and maybe some bad decision making on which trail to take we ended up dropping down into a canyon on a trail we didn't think we weren't sure we'd be able to go back up.

It started out somewhat bad.

IMG_20210715_125243691_HDR.jpg


Nothing like rock crawling with a trailer!

IMG_20210715_130034556_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_134727973_HDR.jpg


Then it got worse. At this point Amber would walk ahead until she found a spot I would be able to turn around at and guide me down.

IMG_20210715_134827514_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_134929025_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_135519136_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_140457729_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_140723597_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_140749225_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_141734841_HDR.jpg


After a couple hours we finally made it to the valley floor next to an old town and on the wrong side of a private property sign (thankfully the gate wasn't locked).

IMG_20210715_143200730_HDR.jpg
 

r3dd0g

1/2 ton status
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 14, 2006
Posts
2,033
Reaction score
3,507
Location
Chandler, AZ
We were planning on camping in Uncompahgre again, however we ended up exiting the forest near Nucla (stupid GPS). We found another way back in and got up high enough to camp and finally settled in around 8PM, long day for sure.

IMG_20210715_153258272_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_153325143_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_153330680_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210715_181437338_HDR.jpg


We got up on Friday planning on heading to San Juan for the night, but while we were driving we kept seeing all the lakes/reservoirs around and decided to head to Silver Jack Reservoir (back into Uncompahgre). The weather was so nice and the elevation was right so we just stayed there for the night. Paddling around Silver Jack was breathtaking.

IMG_20210716_143558489_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210716_144553219.jpg


IMG_20210716_144603976_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210716_145030621_HDR.jpg


We found the best campsite of the week near Rowdy Lake.

IMG_20210716_160215133.jpg


IMG_20210716_160225822_HDR.jpg


IMG_20210716_160302784_HDR.jpg


We got up on Saturday, packed up and headed for AZ again.

IMG_20210717_110542006_HDR.jpg


We had lunch in Cortez at a brewery with possibly the best wall art ever!

IMG_20210717_143459825.jpg


We finally pulled into one of our favorite campsites in Apache Sitgreaves. It was definitely the driest campsite we were at all week, but somehow we could have a real fire there but not in Colorado. We had been using a propane firepit up to this point.

IMG_20210718_080126418_HDR.jpg


All in all, the trip was a blast. We were having some issues with the fan clutch (wouldn't unlock very often, but when it did you'd have to slow down to get it to lock up again), multiple GPS issues, we damaged one of the legs that raise and lower the tent on the trailer (it still works, but needs some help when raising) and we broke the air line for the front locker, just as we were coming off the last obstacle of our terrible trail choice.

I wish we could have invited people to go with us, but this was just thrown together at the last minute so we didn't really have the opportunity.
 

6872xtc

make mine modified
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Posts
7,576
Reaction score
7,813
Location
Palisade,Colorado
Looks like it was a great trip! You just happened to catch some rain here. Been very dry. Good to see that the high country is green.

It would be interesting to see what trail you got onto. I would guess that it's part of the uranium mining roads that I have heard about around Gateway. I haven't been to that area of the Uncompahgre, I have been more to the east off of Divide Rd.

Nice adventure!
 

r3dd0g

1/2 ton status
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 14, 2006
Posts
2,033
Reaction score
3,507
Location
Chandler, AZ
There were signs about the Uranium mines along that road as well as plenty of old buildings/equipment. I have the GPS tracks so I can figure it out, but I haven't looked yet.

I'd like to go back to Uncompahgre and find the trail that connects North to South. I'm pretty sure we saw it, but didn't think it was the right road.
 

6872xtc

make mine modified
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Posts
7,576
Reaction score
7,813
Location
Palisade,Colorado
There is Uranium Rd up there which connects to Divide Rd. I haven't ran Uranium Rd as far west as it goes, so no clue of where it comes out.

Divide Rd runs from Hwy 141, somewhere about MM140, (I can't remember exactly, I just drive to it or past it) and it will take you south. Seems like it goes towards Columbine Pass. I believe that it's possible to get to Delta or on into Montrose. I haven't done it in 20 years, and I don't have the map handy. Divide Rd is a pretty decent gravel road, I've had a concrete truck up it several miles a few times. The switchbacks and shelf section by Hwy 141 are only a problem with heavy snow and ice.
 

ZooMad75

#crawlabago
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Apr 5, 2003
Posts
6,652
Reaction score
13,263
Location
Pueblo, CO
Looks like a great trip! I love that area. I've only run it east to west on the Rimrocker trail but would love to explore more of it for sure. Thanks for sharing!
 

70jimmy

3/4 ton status
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Mar 3, 2000
Posts
7,147
Reaction score
1,957
Location
Released from Pueblo, told I belong in Southpark
Know that junkyard well, It is owned by Orval who also has a used car place on Main Street in Delta, mainly old cars. Yep some of the best scenery and good wheeling in that part of Colorado, lived there for 11 years so been in many of the areas in the pics! Looks like a great trip!
 

r3dd0g

1/2 ton status
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 14, 2006
Posts
2,033
Reaction score
3,507
Location
Chandler, AZ
Know that junkyard well, It is owned by Orval who also has a used car place on Main Street in Delta, mainly old cars. Yep some of the best scenery and good wheeling in that part of Colorado, lived there for 11 years so been in many of the areas in the pics! Looks like a great trip!
That's cool! I wanted to take home quite a few of the vehicles there.
 

r3dd0g

1/2 ton status
Premium Member
GMOTM Winner
Joined
Sep 14, 2006
Posts
2,033
Reaction score
3,507
Location
Chandler, AZ
I use to eat at the Collbran Cafe all the time when I lived there!
We talked to the owner of a small gas station when he was filling our propane tanks and he recommended it. It was really good!
 
Top Bottom