Saturday, August 29, 2009

To Summitville and Beyond

I took this photo to show you how high we climbed on the dirt road we took yesterday. This was 12,000 feet elevation! Surprisingly, neither of us noticed any difference in our breathing or any signs of being that high. Of course, we weren't hiking up there, but riding in the Xterra, but that is pretty high in the air.

This was our view on the way to the top of Lookout Mountain. These rocks contain so much iron they are this magnificent color in many places. Additionally, the water that flows down the mountains is so acidic and filled with iron that it is rusty! A sign said if you placed a nail in the creek water it would disintegrate within eight months! I will have to post a photo of one of these rusty creeks.
This is the ghost town that was Summitville, CO. This was a large mining area, I assume of iron ore given the nature of the rocks. All that is left of this town are many little shacks such as these and, now, a reclamation project sponsored by Superfund money, to return the area to its former environment. From the looks of the reclamation ponds and the scope of the job, this looks to be a big, long-term project! I spoke above of the rusty water...the reclamation ponds they were cleaning up had "bathtub rings" along the top, of rust. Really was an interesting sight/site to see.
This will have to be one of my fav photos for this trip. Along the Conejos River there was a herd of probably fifty horses running along a dirt path. I thought they must be a wild herd until we got to the end, by the river, and saw this one lone cowboy herding them to a different pasture. They were beautiful horses, with the sun shining on their backs in the early morning hours. The cowboy wasn't bad, either! I took many photos of these horses running, but I wanted to show one with the cowboy in it, bringing up the rear. Isn't being "out West" just great?!


Vicki Greene said...

I can see why the horses would be a fav. Fantastic shot!

Barbara Sailor said...

Your photos are fantastic - could I have permission to paint the old building in the deserted town. What a great photo.