Thursday, August 18, 2022—Silver Thread Scenic Byway and the High Country

After awakening this morning, I experienced intense vomiting. We decided the intestinal problems I had been experiencing were the result of some new medication! 

Anxious to explore the high country near us, we opted to drive the Silver Thread Scenic Byway, at least to Lake City. Points of interest included the mighty Rio Grande River for flyfishing on gold medal waters, Wagon Wheel Gap, the Historic Bachelor Loop and Creede Mining District, the spectacular and unrivaled North Clear Creek Waterfalls, scenic Slumgullian Pass that cuts through a natural earthflow, and Colorado’s second-largest natural lake – Lake San Cristobal—more about these in future blogs.

Lunch was at Southern Vittles in Lake City. We both had chicken strips, and they were delicious. We would definitely eat there again. After lunch, we continued north on the Silver Thread Scenic Byway to the ranching community of Powderhorn, then back south on County Road 50 to Colorado Highway 149 (Silver Thread Scenic Byway.)

The scenic beauty along the way was breathtaking—mountain vistas at every turn, creeks and streams, small high country lakes, and lush valleys. Make no mistake, County Road 50 was rough in places, almost necessitating a 4X4 while the Honda Pilot was only front wheel drive. Near the junction of County Road 50 and Colorado Highway 149, we stopped at a small lake and watched rise after rise, vowing to return to fly fish this lake. Wildflowers were plentiful, and made for a few decent photographs.

Fireweed

And then, continuing a couple hundred yards, we spotted a group of male mule deer working their way uphill toward us. We patiently waited, and all of the velvet-horned bucks posed. The largest was especially photogenic and offered three portrait photos.

Mule deer in velvet
Mule deer in velvet
Mule deer in velvet

We returned to the cabin near dark, and watched television for a while before bedtime.