Our drive took us along the Dolores River...

There are a lot of ranches in the area with cows and...


The Dolores River...

One of many great campgrounds in the area..

Some sites are right by the river...


Next, we drove through what they call "The Meadows"..section ..



Next, we took the back road, it was really rough and narrow...but...

We saw a LOT of cows in the road..:-)

I was shocked to see a lot of horses loose too...

Wowser for sure!

Some of the cows didn't want to move..:-)

They own this place..:-)

Back on the road, finally...

More wowser views...



Beavers busy building a dam...


The fun road about to start...:-)

I love the trees in this area..

Passing was not fun in this area, we had to back up...

The beauty of the area made it worth the drive...

What? We were shocked to see it say this..:-)



We made it without a scratch...:-)



Back on the main highway with more beautiful views...


Here we go again...another back road..

The road to Alta Lakes was even worse, but still fun..




This area looks like a old mining town..



We had to cross a bit of water, not too bad..

Alta Lakes sign, we were happy to see we were still on...


We made it to the top..but the road got even more rocky..:-)

Finally, we see the lake..:-)

This narrow road separates the two lakes..

The perfect place for our picnic..

It was worth the drive to see this beautiful area..

The lake on the right side of the road...


We saw a few tent campers across the lake..


Heading back down, the GPS said we were near Telluride..and 11,200 feet..

Yikes, the water was deeper on the way down...:-)

The last view of Lizard Head Peak on the way down...

Last one!

We had a wonderful Sunday "scenic byway" drive through the mountains today. At Cortez, the byway turns north following State Highway 145 through the town of Dolores and follows the Dolores River into the San Juan National Forest. My brother and his wife (Bobby & Liz) camped here before and loved it too, it is a beautiful area.

The byway passes through the small town of Rico, from Rico, the byway crosses 10,222 ft Lizard Head Pass and enters the Uncompahgre National Forest. Lizard Head Pass provides views of the 14,159-foot El Diente Peak, the 14,246-foot Mount Wilson, the 14,017-foot Wilson Peak and the pass's namesake, the 13,113-foot Lizard Head Peak.

We could see Lizard Head Peak on and off during our drive. We took a tiny road where mostly jeeps are allowed through the back woods. It was incredible. After our back roads tour we got back on the byway that descends near the little town of Ophir. We decided to drive another one of those jeep only roads up to the top where we viewed the lakes and found the perfect spot for our picnic lunch.

It was another awesome drive in Colorado. The more we see of this beautiful state, the more we love it. If you are looking for wilderness campgrounds right on the river, this part of the San Juan National Forest is the place to be. Some of the sites even have full hookups. I will let the pictures tell the rest of the story. :-)

Check back later for more from Colorado.

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