We spent the day in Estes Park, walking around, enjoying the weather, gawking at store windows, visiting a book store, and generally relaxing away the day before we decided to find a place to sleep for the night.
We wound up heading south on highway 7 and came to Olive Ridge Campground. Since the calendar flipped to September, and the kiddos are back in school now, we seem to have our pick of the choicest sites. We do the drive through, make sure no generators are in sight or earshot, size up the spot for levelness and find some Sun for the solar panel, and settle right in.
We find friends with feathers close by.
Many of these little White-breasted nuthatches were also camped here, as was the Mountain chickadee in the top photo up in the header.
Cold weather has definitely settled in, and like the birds, we find ourselves continually heading south. We moved camp again the next day to carry on with our slow progress to warmer weather, this time stopping at Cold Springs Campground, where we had another camping loop all to ourselves.
The entire time we were in Montana and Wyoming, with all the wildlife we saw, we never did spot a moose. Seems nobody was seeing any moose.
We asked the park ranger about this, and his theory and others in the know about these things, mostly seem to agree that after Montana and Wyoming suffered some intense drought years, (even though this year, everything is lush and green with water everywhere) much of the local moose population decided to hit the road and migrate to “greener pastures.” People in Oregon have seen a huge increase in the animals, as have folks here in Colorado.
While camping in Cold Springs Campground and talking to our camp hosts, we mentioned this to them and wouldn’t you know that those super nice folks told us where we could go to see the Colorado Moose immigrants.
Sure enough, a side trip to Brainard Lake up around 11,000 feet in elevation, brought us to not one, but three of these big fellows.
Another day of our life on the road. Another piece of the wildlife inter-connections that has touched our hearts, and warmed our souls.
Wouldn’t trade this lifestyle for anything…
Oh, and have I mentioned…that we meet the nicest and most generous people while on the road?