Who: Michelle, myself, and friends
We attended the MeadowGrass Music Festival at La Foret Conference and Retreat Center in Black Forest. We stayed for almost the full day and really had a good time. As luck would have it, our friends Andy and Jenny were there too and we enjoyed the day together. The lead singer for one of the bands was another friend, Ben. It was a fun, relaxing day with good music, dancing, food, and visiting. One of my favorites was a Canadian banjo player Jayme Stone. Thanks very much, Steve, for organizing the festival!
Andy gave me a walking tour of the La Foret grounds, including the adobe chapel. It’s a beautiful place.
While we had fun, it felt kind of melancholy at times, since this was probably the last time we will get to spend time like this with Andy and Jenny. They have plans to move out of town.
The Black Forest fire started only a couple of weeks later, on June 11. The surrounding forest and community was greatly damaged by the fire. I understand that La Foret is still standing.
Today I hiked the trail to Devil’s Head Lookout. The trip to the trailhead was half of the fun. I drove from Colorado Springs up to Woodland Park, and then took Rampart Range Road north for about 90 minutes. I had never taken Rampart Range Road that far before.
The trail was quite busy with people. It is a good, well-maintained trail. The friendly ranger at the lookout tower was handing out these souvenir cards. It bugs me a little that I still don’t know how the peak got its name. I could not recognize any rock or perspective that reminded me of a devil’s head.
Who: Michelle, Sammy and myself
Length: 2.8 miles
Time: about 2 hours
Weather: 65 degrees, sunny
The Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area and Wilderness is located northwest of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, near Montrose, Colorado. We spent the weekend in Montrose, and this hike was part of our exploration of the area. It started out with a $20 boat-shuttle across the Gunnison River, courtesy of the Gunnison River Pleasure Park, a private business at the north entrance of the gorge. The shuttle fee included a rowboat rental, which they left us to get back across.
The river is shallow enough that it appears possible to wade across, but in order to do so one should be prepared with appropriate clothing and extra shoes. The trail we took follows the east bank of the Gunnison for about 3 miles, in and back. We completed a little less than 1/2 of the distance. The trail on the west bank probably would have been easier, but less adventurous. The west bank trailhead is accessible by car, and the trail appears wider and less rugged than the east bank trail.
This area looks popular for fly-fishing. We saw our first wildflowers of the year on this hike–Globe Mallow. Michelle really liked the colorful rocks near the river.