It rained lightly all day Friday, negating any outdoor activities or photography. Late Friday evening, we attended an Improv Comedy Show in Creede, part of the Creede Repertory Theater summer program. It was only “so so.”
After a late start Saturday morning, we drove the Silver Thread Scenic Byway west to Lake City, stopping on the way to photograph some interesting landscapes.
Among the landscapes was the Slumgullion Earthflow National Natural Landmark. It is a rare example of an earthflow, called mass wasting, was/is a slow moving landslide. About 700 years ago, an area of Mesa Seco, composed of partially decomposed volcanic rock, slid down the mountain and blocked the Lake Fork of the Gunnison River, creating Lake San Cristobal. A second earthflow has been moving continuously for about 300 years over older stable rock. It moves at a rate of about 23 feet per year.
There were also a number of wildflowers blooming at the higher elevations, and even a butterfly was spotted.
Arriving in Lake City just after lunch, we stopped by the Southern Vittles where we had a delicious lunch last week. I had catfish and Kay had chicken strips. The catfish was not edible—too much dark flesh giving the fillet a bad taste. Kay’s chicken strips were really good. After lunch, Kay witnessed a shooting; actually, it was a reenactment of an old west gunfight.
And then, we wandered through the staging grounds (Lake City’s Town Park) for the finish of the Lake City Alpine 50. The Lake City Alpine 50 is an epic, 50-mile, alpine endurance bike race involving around 6,000 feet of climbing. The race includes cycling over both the 12,640 foot Cinnamon Pass and the 12,800 foot Engineer Pass, before making a nearly nineteen-mile fast descent along Henson Creek, and then back to Lake City to finish the race.
The Lake City National Historic District covers about 142 acres of land in more than 34 blocks and additions, making it one of the largest historic districts in Colorado. It is also one of the oldest, and best preserved, historic districts in the state. The Historic District contains commercial and residential buildings of various sizes and styles. Many commercial structures were built of wood, with front-facing gable and false-front façade. There are also a few masonry buildings located on the Hough, Bank and Finley “blocks.” Residences include chinked-log pioneer cabins, simple miners’ cottages, and the Queen Anne style homes of merchants and mine owners. Most homes have front porches and decorative features. Tall cottonwoods planted by early Lake City citizens are carefully tended today. Fences, boardwalks, and outbuildings are also features of the district.
Kay discovered a hummingbird moth, common name “Whitelined Sphinx Moth,” nectaring on hanging baskets—a real treat for this photographer.
After a busy day, we returned to the cabin to rest before attending a really, really good performance of Steel Magnolias. To top things off, the first producer of the first play of Steel Magnolias, Pamela Berlin, talked briefly before the performance, including the play’s early history. She is now a part time resident of Creede, and has a long history with the Creede Repertory Theater.