Home

The variables lined up for a winter camping adventure: sunny 40 degree days, nights around freezing, and low wind speeds. The winds while driving were actually much higher than expected–35 mph gusts on I-25. However, I did not know that when we took off, so I learned what those wind speeds are like when pulling the camper. Truthfully, not a big deal. Now I know and I am glad for the learning experience.

Anyway, Kerry (son), a 4th grade friend of ours, Maggie (son’s dog), Tango (my dog) and I headed out to Curt Cowdy State Park, near Cheyenne. The lake was frozen solid and we saw a number of ice fishermen:

DSC03669

Ice fishermen. The human shadow in front of the dark fishing hut is me,up on a cliff, taking the photo.

DSC03699

We took two hikes. The first day, the trail was up high, along the top of a canyon. At one point, heavy chains were attached to the rock. We had to hang onto the chains–like a stair railing– to pass through. This was especially exciting with the snow on the trail and the frozen lake waaaay down below.

kerry robert 5

My guys!

kerry robert 2 better

Snowy trail – I am lagging behind, with camera and binoculars around my neck!

canyon

Although the ice fishermen were out, we were the only campers. I picked a site with electricity so we could plug in the heated mattress pads. The guys and dogs slept in the two side beds, and I slept on converted dinette bed (next to the heater).

DSC03698

kerry robert 3

DSC03682

At peace: sunrise over frozen lake

We played a bit on the ice in the morning!

kerry robert

DSC03730

DSC03729

DSC03706

Along the way home, we saw 4 Rough-Legged Hawks, soaring. I have long suspected Rough-Legged Hawks in that area but never got a good look at their tail markings until this trip. Confirmed: a new bird for the “life list”. I could not get a photo but here is one from online:

a

Every winter I see the light morph shown above, perched just like this on fence posts along I- 25, north of Cheyenne, around mile marker 30. On this day, we saw the dark versions soaring, between mile markers 25 and 55. Amazing fact about these birds: Wyoming is their balmy winter home. They spend summers breeding on the Arctic Tundra.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s