Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Rubber Bullets for Bears, a tough love solution.


There is a saying in wildlife management circles, that goes like this:

“A fed bear is a dead bear”100_1940

There is a reason for those “don’t feed the Bears” signs. In the Rio Grande National Forest a Bear that has three negative contacts with campers will usually have to be destroyed.


Part of our job is to apply the rubber bullet tough love technique to separate the Bears from the campers and their food that hasn’t been properly put away from Bears.

Even though our campers receive the handout materials and the talk about bear country food storage procedures. There will be a few that are careless or that deliberately feed the Bears to attempt to photograph them.

Sadly, those people are likely guaranteeing the Bears demise, when it only is following it’s intense feeding drive, after a long Winter of hibernation.

At those times it is safer for the Campers, and the Bears, to apply the tough love technique. That forced separation may give the Choke Cherries a chance to ripen. Then the Bears no longer have a interest in any other food source.

Monday, June 7, 2010



After a busy day in the Meadows yesterday, we slept like a log last night. We awoke to a pleasant surprise this morning. Overnight temperatures were not much lower than we had experienced at Aspen Glade, down lower at 8500 ft.

The thermometer read 41* this morning. Really good sleeping weather.


The sun has peeked over the tree line as we plan our days activities over coffee .100_1949

We will get the restrooms all shined up for our first campers of the year. Then chainsaw some of the timber out of the roads

Sunday, June 6, 2010


Trujillo Meadows Campground, Rio Grande National Forest, Conejos District.

June 1st. 2010, we’re in our campground today ! It was a long day of doing all of the necessary things to getter’ done.

It is nearly 7 PM and the shadows are getting long  as I look out of the living room window across the natural meadow. It is fast approaching that magical twilight time of day when we see lots of wildlife.

The views here are so fantastic that I will likely post way too many pix. It is hard to resist sharing our exuberance about this place.


Our SPF60 nestled in by the fir trees.100_1943

Dining room view.


Couch window view.


Living room window view.100_1946

Office window view.


View from the kitchen window.


Here is the view across the fop of the lap top, from the other office window, as I type this .

Saturday, June 5, 2010


Today was a work day at the Meadows. We are getting ready to bring the water system back on line after being shut down and drained for the Winter.

The pressure regulator vault had a valve that needed to be replaced. The vault must be mostly under ground to keep it from freezing. A trip into Chama for a new valve was in order.

Tomorrow we will hook up the chlorinator and put the faucets back on the water stations located at the various campsite loops.

Most of the loops still have snow drifts over  the roads and there is timber blocking some loops and campsites.

Here is a look at our picnic table.


Here is a look at Pete and Oscar’s campsite while they were here last year.



Friday, June 4, 2010


Those cute, tiny little shells, that Betty picked up Down on Padre Island last Winter, look a bit strange here, up high in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. But they draw comments from nearly everyone that stops by our campsite. The shells are tiny enough that most folks peer closely at them and ask “what’s in those lights”, then, the most repeated one that we hear is, “what a clever souvenir !”


We have a habit of putting out several rugs to assist in keeping the dogs from tracking in so much dirt. The wind can be strong at times so we put the citronella candle buckets and the solar lights on the corners to keep the rugs in place.

Here in Aspen Glade this is a more common sight and gives us a place to visit with our neighbors.


A live trout stream, a campfire, a stack of firewood, a barbeque grill, and a lawn chair. All that is missing is a steaming cup of coffee on a cool morning ! Oh, wait, I had to set that coffee cup down when I picked up the camera !


As we wait for the snow drifts to melt off so we can get into our campground, we check the forecast the first thing each morning.


There is no cellular service here, so, no internet. We have to drive about five miles to get dial up speeds on a broadband device. However, blogging, coffee and satellite news weather & sports ain’t all that bad !

As we tour around the area while waiting to get up into Trujillo Meadows, we see evidence of lots of improvements that are being made to roads, bridges and campgrounds. This bridge is located near the Park creek Campground where we visited fellow bloggers CHAPPY TRAILS and BEARHEART & BUTTERFLY.


It is good to see these improvements happening in a manner that many may enjoy these mountains for years to come. I think that the dollars spent like this will bring valuable returns and be used for generations to come. I know that sometimes there are inconveniences from the construction, but we have used facilities that were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps many generations ago. Those investments have paid big dividends in recreational opportunities for a very long time.

Thursday, June 3, 2010


We got a chance to visit with friends Bobbie & Jim Chapman of the blog CHAPPY TRAILS. Jim is the AL & L Campgrounds area manager for the next USFS Ranger district North of our campground. While there we got a chance to meet and visit with BEARHEART & BUTTERFLY. It was pretty cool, all of those bloggers sitting around talking about internet tools and techniques. We always look forward to these types of visits because we learn so much from these intense exchanges of information.

We were able to visit for a couple of hours and see Jim & Bobbie’s new fifth wheel before we had to get back to the reason for trip into Alamosa. The Chapman’s have been firefighters for many years and collect badges. Here is a look:


It was a great visit with friends and was over all too soon.