July 21, 2010

On the way to the dude ranch

The dude ranch where I am working part-time is about 25 miles from our cabin.  Due to portions of unpaved, washboard-like roads, that 25 mile drive usually takes me about 45 minutes.  It's not a bad drive, however, because I get to see so much beauty and history along the way.

Westcliffe is ranching country.  Lots of cattle ranches, some of them run by the same families for hundreds of years.

And some of the finest hay in the state comes out of this area.
 What's the wild west without horses?  Lots and lots of horses too!
Do you see those tracks on the mountain to the left?  That was home to a popular ski resort back in the 80s.  The story I was told was that the area didn't get sufficient snow for many years and the owners finally had to close down the slopes, but the evidence is still there.

I am given a glimpse of history along the way by this well-manicured cemetery...

 
and old crumbling barns that hold secrets of days gone by.

There are freshly sheared alpacas...


and a regular flock of geese at the watering hole.

and signs that point the way...

At the entrance to the ranch, I often find this welcoming committee...


There are lots of pieces of history at the ranch too like this covered wagon, minus the cover...


and this 1892 Montgomery Ward kit home (far right)...

And before I know it, the 45-minute drive is up and I have landed at my destination.

5 comments:

icebear said...

i love the "woah" stop sign! beautiful scenery and interesting landmarks :o)

AJ-OAKS said...

I am envious of you! The scenery is amazing. The history is fascinating. And working on a Dude ranch. How cool is that!!!! Looking forward to seeing more pics and hearing more of the history.

morningbrayfarm.com said...

Simply beautiful. Thanks for taking us on the drive with you. :) Love, love, love the Whoa sign. :)

cousin Arnetta said...

Love the scenery ! it's so peaceful with the horses out on the range.. and the 'Whoa' sign is great !
You know I thought that sure is a strange looking calf .. ... then saw that you said it was a sheared alpaca ...
ha ha!

Razzberry Corner said...

I love it! My 20 mile drive into work is not nearly as beautiful as your drive!