Road Trippin’ – Day 1 – Fun, Somewhat Weird Salida, Colorado
Road Trippin’ – Day 1 – Fun, Somewhat Weird Salida, Colorado

Road Trippin’ – Day 1 – Fun, Somewhat Weird Salida, Colorado

Herb’s Blog, Herbdate 22753 – 977

Here’s the haps:

Our adventure started off on a kind of another downer note. We received a text and an email from the Durango and Silverton railroad that our trip from Durango to Silverton was canceled. The note read, in part,

In cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management, The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is adhering to an Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL). The U.S. Forest Service uses a four-level industrial regulation system to help prevent wildfires by regulating various activities within the forest. In level four conditions, all excursions of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad within the National Forest must cease…

So we had to decide what we wanted to do. The whole purpose of taking the route we were going to take was to cross Wolf Creek Pass and ride the steam engine from Durango to Silverton. We had to make a decision soon as our reservations in Arizona were coming to the point that we could not cancel and get a refund. We decided to stay on the same route and just stop where we felt like and just do whatever we wanted as we wended our way to the Grand Canyon. We could still see the Four Corners Monument on the way. Gnoel agreed.

Our first stop was a small-ish, quirky, artsy-fartsy town that seemed in my mind to be similar to Manitou Springs (In fact there are “Keep Salida Weird” t-shirts), called Salida. This wasn’t very far along our journey but wound through beautiful Colorado scenery. We decided to go with the least expensive option for staying overnight and wound up at a place called The Circle R Motel. I don’t know how you define these places, not really. It’s a kind of Fifties theme and was just fine. The room was not large and “luxurious” but to me the luxury was in a nice, comfortable bed. And it was clean. Mrs. Herb used to clean motel rooms and knows what to look for and she deemed it clean. It had a table and chair and fridge and microwave. Under a hundred bucks for three of us was really good. Especially, as I said, since it was clean. The decor was interesting. Out front was an Edsel President, not sure what year but I think it was a ’57. The front desk was made from the front end of one as well. The old-timey-looking gas pumps are actually an electric vehicle charging station, free to customers. I didn’t ask how many they get and I don’t know what they might charge non-customers but I liked the look and feel of it.

Freshen up and it’s time for dinner at The Boathouse Cantina. TNT had been there before with her friend and said this was what we wanted to do in Salida. I wasn’t disappointed. I liked the open-air, overlooking-the-river seating and the elk burger and the deep-fried goat cheese curds were very good as well.

We then took a stroll through the downtown and if you like kitschy or quirky you’ll find it here alongside serious artists and artisans. Of course, being Louis L’Amour fans (we listened to Galloway and Mustang Man on the trip) we had to stroll:

We wound up at the coolest store, the F Street Five and Dime.

So, back to the hotel we went, waiting in anticipation for tomorrow’s adventure, driving the famous Wolf Creek Pass.

23 Comments

  1. J P

    What a great trip! But Herb, Herb, Herb, we have to work on your car-spotting skills. The red and white car is a 1955 Studebaker President, and the yellow front end is from a 1956 Studebaker. Until they stopped building cars in 1966 they were the oldest vehicle manufacturer in the world, having started with building wagons since 1852. The Studebaker Corp (HQ South Bend, Indiana) was unrelated to Edsel, which was a short-lived division of the Ford Motor Co and built cars only for 1958-60.

    Sorry but as an Indiana boy I am a total Stude Geek, which means you saw something far cooler than any Edsel. 🙂

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