Return To Dolores Canyon

The Great Sage (now agricultural) Plain and Sleeping Ute Mountain.

The Great Sage (now agricultural) Plain and Sleeping Ute Mountain.

It was back to the San Juan National Forest in southwest Colorado. A little bit north of Dove Creek. Off the north edge of the Great Sage Plain and into the Ponderosa pine forest surrounding the Dolores River Canyon. An area I was coming to know better and better.

Dolores River Canyon side canyon, looking south to Dove Creek.

Dolores River Canyon side canyon, looking south to Dove Creek.

The first stop: to the Dolores Canyon Overlook. Which is actually on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land. They have a very nice little park there, an easy walk to the overlook down into the canyon. And there’s usually no one there. Maybe a few locals on the weekends, but it’s too far from the beaten path, in a very rural area anyway, to be crowded. My kind of place.

Dolores River Canyon.

Dolores River Canyon.

After taking in the fine springtime afternoon at the viewpoint, it was time to decide on my camp location. Once there I settled in and gathered firewood for the evening. And also cleaned it up a little bit. Just a few things left behind by some other campers, nothing much. Following another of my principles: If you take care of a place, it will take care of you, too. It’s just sensible.

Early evening clouds towering over the Ponderosa pine forest.

Early evening clouds towering over the Ponderosa pine forest.

Time to sit back in my folding camp chair and savor. The clouds, the Ponderosa pine trees, the light, the delicious high country air.

Eventually evening light came on. Right on schedule. Though I had no schedule. Tough lighting for photographs, high contrast between the brilliant clouds and shadowed forest below. Dramatic lighting. Brilliant whites to blues, then sunset colors in the clouds.

Sunset colors in the clouds, framed by Ponderosa pines.

Sunset colors in the clouds, framed by Ponderosa pines.

Then dusk, finally. The fire died down, I did too, going to bed. Appreciation for another wonderful day.

Photo location: Dolores County, Colorado.

© 2015 Stephen J. Krieg.

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