So. CO Trip Day 1 and 2 – Escaping the city and wildfire smoke

Despite our many weekend camping trips during the early summer, we were still more than ready to escape the four walls our home and see some different scenery for our week-long vacation in southern Colorado. We were so eager that we decided to skip town not just one day early, but two days!

We had booked lodging near Telluride from Sunday to Saturday, but decided it would be nice to break up the 7-hour drive from Denver to Telluride with a night of camping somewhere in between on Saturday. Then, in a last minute decision on Friday afternoon, we decided to leave right then and there and camp yet another additional night before our Telluride trip. Wildfire smoke had been relentlessly suffocating the skies of Denver since August 3rd and we were determined to escape it. We thought if we travelled south, the smoke plumes might not be blowing in that direction.

But we were wrong. So wrong. And not only did we not escape it, but it set the backdrop for our entire vacation.

Although we hadn’t managed to escape the smoke, it was still blissful to escape the city. In darkness, we found a small campsite three hours outside of town that would do for our first night. It wasn’t the most scenic campsite, but it had a tiny running stream by it, which provided just enough white noise for a good night’s sleep before we left early the next morning to continue our journey south.

Earlier in the summer, we had camped near Crested Butte and on the way home, we made a quick visit to some gorgeous blue waterfalls off the Paradise Divide. Crested Butte is one of my favorite towns in Colorado, but hubby and I rarely travel there because there is no quick, direct route to get there and it is a minimum of a 4-hour drive from Denver (add at least an hour for weekend traffic going out and sometimes up to two hours coming back on a weekend). This trip, however, was the perfect excuse to make a stop out of the way to this destination since we had plenty of time to kill and already had a head start for making the trip there.

After finding the perfect campsite near the Paradise Divide on Saturday afternoon, we made a proper visit to the waterfalls we had visited earlier in the summer and arrived back at our perfect campsite just in time to witness a smoky, but beautiful sunset, complete with dainty deer tiptoeing through our camp.

Next up, we finally make it to Telluride, obviously taking the scenic route!

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