Playing Cowboy Days 49-51: Just Us to Lakes of the Clouds
September 8, 2021
Wednesday morning I woke up to Mike hollerin, "Drop your cocks and grab your socks!  Time to round up!"  Where does he come up with his material?  We rounded up the ponies, pulled the six we were taking into the high country, saddled, loaded the trailer, and were on the road by 10am.  The party headed to the high country consisted of Mike and I plus Karri and Ladonna the half owner of Poag's.  We stopped at the bar to get food and booze since we were effectively trading horses and time for tasty stuff.  Up to the trail head, packed Taco and Spike, had lunch, and then Karri asked, "Where's the hackamores?"

Damnit.  Back at the ranch.  Hop in the truck, go get hacks, and an hour later we're ready to finally leave the Gibson trailhead.  We head North on the Rainbow Trail for a bit and then turn left destined for the Lakes of the Clouds.  After a good, uneventful ride up we made camp between the middle and upper lakes.  I pitched my tent on the hill overlooking the upper lake, and then I went fishing.  

I don't know what happened between now and then but I sucked.  Only caught one.  Beginners luck ran out perhaps?  Came back up to the fire to continue drinking wholesale liquor and help cook dinner, steak and corn over an open fire as the sun set behind the mountains.  

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The rest of the night was excellent.  Laughter was everywhere and serious topics were covered.  We all learned a lot about each other and just enjoyed sitting in the stillness of the wild ignorant of the distractions of society.  Karri and I talked about my Dad a bit and I had a good cry like I haven't in a while.  It was a good night.  

The following morning came early as it's supposed to in the woods.  It was gorgeous outside and we brewed up some cowboy coffee, cooked bacon, eggs, taters and toast, had a nap, and then started packing to head back down the hill.  

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We broke camp, rode back to the trailhead, had lunch, loaded the trailer, and headed back to the ranch.  Karri had to get to Aspen that evening, the original purpose of her trip, and I had to drive her.  It's about three hours from the ranch.  The twilight drive along the Arkansas river was beautiful, dinner at The Boathouse in Salida was excellent once again, and the nighttime drive along the Collegiates and over Independence Pass was pleasant.  As we pulled into Aspen she got a hold of her girlfriends who had started the girls weekend already and they insisted that we join them.  

I felt like I walked into a Las Vegas ultra lounge.  Everybody was geared up swanky and I roll in wearing Carhartts, a button snap plaid shirt, and a white cowboy hat.  She's wearing a t-shirt with a down vest and sweats.  I'm surprised the music didn't stop when we opened the door.  We got plenty of who the hell are they looks, including some from one of her friends that I met while she was away.  People get so hung up on appearances seriously.  Back to their house, they insisted on more cocktails but I was exhausted at midnight, fine I'll have one.  Sleep, wake up, cook breakfast, and hit the road.  

It was a nice drive back, another beautiful day, there wasn't anything going on at the ranch so I headed to Poag's to do some work before karaoke night.  I walked next door to the wood grill Uruguayan place, wrote most of this, knocked my salad on the floor from the bar by trying to eat a bite from the side hanging over the edge, and then repeated my blunder cutting my ribeye.  Fortunately I blocked that one to avoid further embarrassment.  Waiting on some apple crisp for dessert and then go back to making an ass of myself at the bar.  

I think I'm done here.  I'm fixin to head back home tomorrow, not sure if I actually will, but I'm ready to.  Maybe I'll wait out the weekend.  

Peace and good luck,


3 months ago
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