The Dragon Wagon

The Dragon Wagon
The landscaping changes often.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

The Burr Trail

As part of our route home from our big trip, we decided to drive a couple of our favorite roads in Southern Utah, Highway 24 through Capitol Reef National Park and Highway 12 through Grand Staircase - Escalante National Monument.  We spent two nights in Torrey, Utah, so that we could drive one of our favorite backcountry roads in this area, the Burr Trail.  The Burr trail is an old route that goes from Bullfrog to Boulder in southern Utah.  We picked up the Burr Trail just south of Capitol Reef NP at the foot of the Waterpocket Fold.  The Waterpocket Fold is a part of a large geologic structure that runs down the middle of Utah, called the San Raphael Swell.

Panorama of the Waterpocket Fold from below



A closer view



The road climbs up the middle of this picture.



Looking down from near the top



A couple views from the top of the Waterpocket Fold




A handy lunch spot out of the sun



Does anyone else see the head of the dragon laying along the ridgetop?



To return to Torrey from the end of the Burr Trail in Boulder, we had to drive over the 9,400 ft. summit on Boulder Mountain.  At a viewpoint near the summit, we found a variety of wildflowers in bloom.







Saturday, July 5, 2014

San Juan Mountains

For quite a few years we have wanted to get back on the Jeep roads of the San Juan Mountains in southwestern Colorado.  From June 28th to the 30th we were able to spend a short time near Silverton, Colorado.



Our camp spot along Mineral Creek west of Silverton



Columbine flowers




We decided to re-visit the Buffalo Boy Mine near Stony Pass

This is the top cable tram station where ore from the mine was sent in buckets down the mountain to the mill.





Remnants of the tracks where ore carts from the mine brought ore to the tram



The area where tram buckets were loaded with ore



A couple of GPS screen shots to show the elevation and location




From the mine we drove over to Stony Pass for lunch.
The Rio Grande headwaters start on the east side of this pass.




A marmot near Stony Pass



A few of the wildflowers seen near the pass




Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad

From June 26th to the 28th we camped near Durango, Colorado, in order to take a ride on the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad.  This historic railroad route follows the Animas River Valley between Durango and Silverton, sometimes high on the cliffs of the river gorge.


A video of one of the trains leaving Durango



Our train hugging the cliff wall



The train near the Animas River


Great Sand Dunes

After our visit to the Washington D.C. area, much of our travel was for visiting family and friends, and very little photography.  This post represents a rather large jump towards the west coast.

From June 24th to the 26th we visited Great Sand Dunes National Park in southeastern Colorado.




These are the largest dunes in North America.



Lots of cacti were blooming




Dunes often work well for black and white images.



Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Memories of Washington D.C. - Part 5


While we were there, the 2014 Rolling Thunder protest event took place.



Since Rolling Thunder involves tens of thousands of motorcycles taking hours for all to pass by, we went into the United States Botanical Garden near the Capitol Building.