Saturday, July 31, 2010


Osier Station Colorado. Located high up in a difficult to reach mountain pass of the Rocky Mountains, this 1800’s steam train station is a step back in history.


Gift shop selection is absolutely wonderful.


This denim jacket has a detailed steam engine.



Fantastic chef prepared meals served buffet style for under $10.


Look at those massive beams in the ceiling !


The dining room.


Table set up.


View from the front porch.


Work train arriving at the station for lunch.


There were three steam engines there at the same time on this day.


Passenger train from Antonito Colorado arrives for lunch.


The work train leaves after lunch.


The Chama passenger train has been re signed for it’s trip through to Antonito.


Thursday, July 29, 2010


RUN PETE ! Didn’t you see the movie ?


Quick !  Grab the axe and hide behind the wood pile.


Then when jaws gets near, you can practice that super chop that you have been polishing up !100_1992

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Three different groups of volunteers  are grooming the fifty campsites at Trujillo Meadows under the supervision of USFS personnel.100_2013

A USFS contractor uses heavy equipment to break ground and move heavier items.100_2014

Much of the grooming and assembly of tables and fire rings are done by hand.

The contractor is staying at a nearby commercial campsite while the student volunteers arrive by three small school bussed daily.

Two separate campsites of eight volunteers each, from the Southwest Conservation Center are camping in tents in order to be more readily available.

The level of coordination and cooperation has been quite amazing

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Imagine our surprise,when  on the morning we were to move off of our campsite so that it could be renovated at the start of the campground’s re building project,  when we pulled the tire covers off, to discover a flat ! Airing it up seemed to be the quickest solution to get us moved on time. 100_1999 The air compressor plugged into the basement inverter quickly got us on the move to our temporary site.

100_1998  At the temporary site we put the spare on the trailer and aired up the tire to look for the cause of our flat.100_1997At 65 psi with a little soapy water spray, we soon found this tiny little finishing nail.

Though we carry a tire plugging kit,

100_2002 we didn’t like the idea of plugging a 8 ply tire with less than fifteen hundred miles on it.

The next trip into Chama, we dropped it off at the Rocky Mountain Mini Mart to get the flat patched.

Sunday, July 25, 2010


A camper was parked at the gate when we received word from the renovation project’s lead man that we could go ahead and open up for business. The campers at the gate were camped down at a lower elevation and were looking for a higher and cooler 100_2036 place to spend the nights.

They said that they were having trouble getting a good night’s sleep because of the heat. We agreed. We have been sleeping with the windows open to let the low 40’s breeze in. Our high today was about 74*.


A few small items remain to be finished yet but they will be done shortly. The main thing is that we have campers again !


The new kiosk looks really good. We had just put our signs up on it when we were able to open the gates for campers. Things are going so smoothly that they are talking about letting us open up the other half of the campground early.

Friday, July 23, 2010


As the completion of first half of the Trujillo Meadows Campground renovation project draws near, fresh signs are going up.


Water samples have been taken, the kiosk is installed and pay station is on it’s way, new signage is going up and we’re nearly ready to open up for business. Oh, yeah, it won’t be long now !


The Front gate sign base is cemented in place and the signs are going up.


The short list of items that need attention is getting shorter and shorter.

Though we have enjoyed the peace and tranquility of having such a quiet campground, we are both looking forward to having campers again. So many have became friends that we keep in touch with.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Things began to quiet’n down somewhat after Chuck & Geri headed out for T or C, and, when we began to gather around the campfire that evening , as is our custom, we made a discovery.100_1991

A dandy orphan chair had been abandoned near the campfire.


We built up the campfire and began to discuss the possibilities as the sunset behind the continental divide.

Finally, we figured it out. We had a refugee on our hands, that was seeking asylum in the cool mountains !

That chair just couldn’t stand the thought of going down into that hot desert country.

He, he, Chuck, looks like your chair’s next stop will be up near the Canadian Border at the Sugar Beet Harvest !

Betty likes the way it sits.


Maybe it won’t be worn out before we see you at JugFest2011 !

Notice that it is by the old campfire ring in the first photo and now is by the new campfire ring after we moved back on our site.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


As the Trujillo Meadows Campground Renovation project nears the half way point, and we will soon be able to open up half of it for campers,  we were sitting around our new campfire ring talking about how this project has gone so far.

Being from the Ouachita National Forest, we have worked with the forest service on many occasions in the past. Both socially and professionally.

We have been aware for many years that the forest service is a competent manager of America’s Natural resources.  We have been also aware that they still manage to get their job done though they are often times harried by unreasonable external forces.

This project has given us new insight into the grass root, nuts and bolts level of it, because as campground managers, we were allowed to stay on sight.

The onsite team of young USFS professionals supervised several volunteer groups and contractors that range in age from senior citizens ( the area where we fall in ), to middle school students, with ease and quiet competence.

The range of the list that has been accomplished so far is truly astounding. This has proved to be a much larger construction project than we had imagined. At one point in time the flow of materials for the various projects covered over an acre of storage, even though materials were daily taken from the storage to the individual campsites that were being renovated. Some materials were delivered by the various contractors to designated locations through out the campground and were never kept at the storage area. Items such as base material, gravel, landscaping rock and salvage materials dumpsters, never made it to the storage area, otherwise it might have enlarged the storage area to several acres.

USFS district managers for the various departments that were involved reviewed progress and gave briefings to the USFS onsite crew in  low keyed gatherings around a pickup truck tailgate where paper work was spread out, almost daily. Often times these meetings were so subtle that someone could walk up, ask a question, get an answer, walk away back to their job, and never realize that the tailgate planning session had took back up where they were when they walked up with a question.

To say the least, we are impressed !

Daily, we hear news reports of government incompetence, blatant bungling, delays and cost over runs. This old redneck says, “they ain’t none of that here !”

These quiet competent professionals are bringing this project in on time and are even doing little extra things to make the campground better for it’s campers.

So, news media, where are you when a good job  being well done needs to be reported  ?

Monday, July 12, 2010



As some have began to suspect, we are on the verge of going full time. We have made so many changes  in the way that we travel/camp that it is positively enough to make our heads spin around !

The vast number of things that must be attended to before we can truly be full timers, is nearly overpowering. We both have extremely strong ties to the Ouachita Mountains and our Mountaineer culture.

Some of our necessary changes are quite painful for us and require much thought and languishing over even the tinniest of things.

All during this process we are keeping up our work/travel schedule.

Then there are new things that pop up in our lives , such as our campground up high in the Rocky Mountains being rebuilt.

And so on and so forth.

As our blog approaches six hundred ninety two thousand visits, we are going to have to just, as our home folks say, “suck it up” and take care of business.

Here is a look at our campsite before the updates:


Here is a look at the nearly finished project: ( Note that I quote the year wrong in the video )