Mountain Trip - Fall 2011

It was another great trip to glorious Red River, NM. After the brutal summer that Dallas endured, the cool Rocky Mountain air felt terrific. And the Aspen trees in the higher elevations were spectacular. Sixteen people made all or part of the trip, including:
Dan Stone, Brad Stone, Chuck Mandernach, Nancy & Stan Ferguson, Shelley, Tim & Debbie Speck, Chip & Judy Speir, Daniel Speir, Olivia Daniel, Emily Speir, Brandyn Schult, P.J. Ward

This picture of the trout pond and cabins at the Rio Colorado Lodge in Red River, NM was taken during our trip. I like that it looks largely the same now as it did back in 1976 when I was ten.

On the way to the Rockies we usually stop for lunch at the "Texas Steakout" restaurant in Clarendon, TX. Dad is sitting on an old tractor with oversized tires that was parked behind the restaurant.

Where would we be without Dad's large trailer? And that trailer was pure in brand this year. After many decades riding Yamaha dirt bikes, I'm happy to report that Chuck has now joined Team Honda :)

There were more deer (and ducks) this year at the Rio Colorado Lodge. On some mornings there were a dozen or more beautiful deer grazing in front of our cabins. They seemed very interested in the Corn Hole bags (which are filled with dried kernals of corn) but I don't think they actually ate them.

Dad unloading "Big Red" at the Old Pass trailhead

Daniel & Olivia heading up to the Old Pass

Me riding up to the Old Pass on my beloved Honda XR400r.

Stan (left) and Chuck riding toward the Old Pass

The annual gathering under the Aspen trees at the top of the Old Pass

Dad owns a Honda CRF150f (with a 200cc kit in it) but in this picture he is trying out Chuck's new CRF230f. Both are great bikes.

We ate at Sundance twice on this trip. It's pretty good for New Mexico style Mexican food. But nothing compares to good ol' Tex Mex!

I hiked up to Middle Fork Lake this year with Tim, P.J., Debbie & Judy (I'm not in the photo). It's a pretty smooth path, but still exhausting due to the altitude. They spent the night at the lake, along with some others who hiked to the top of Wheeler Peak. I spent a few minutes at the quaint mountain lake and then hiked down.

Daniel on the way to Wheeler Peak

Olivia, Daniel, Brandyn & Emily on top of the highest point in New Mexico...Wheeler Peak (elev. 13,161 ft)

Stan & Nancy's daughter, Brooke, didn't make the trip this year but she sent twenty Omaha Steaks to our cabins. Very kind!

Tim & Chip playing "washers." I'm not sure who the washers champ was this year, but it wasn't me. I started off throwing well, but soon lost my touch. Dad bested me by one game.

Chip (and Daniel & Olivia) heading up to Greenie Peak. Just after I snapped this picture, my bike slipped off its kickstand and fell on its side breaking the clutch perch (the thing that holds the clutch lever). Luckily, I remembered what Dad & Chuck had taught me decades ago and was able to temporarily fix it with some plastic tie straps. We also temporarily repaired a punctured 4-wheeler tire by inserting a metal screw with some silicone sealant dripped on it. MacGyver's got nothin' on us.

Shelley roasting a marshmallow near the Midnight Meadows. We also threw some of Dad's metal grates over the fire and cooked up some hotdogs & beans.

Stan & Nancy heading from the Midnight Meadows area over to Greenie Peak. That's a lovely stand of Aspen behind them.

Stan & Nancy and Chip & P.J. at Greenie Peak (elev. 11,221 ft)

A few of us visited the very impressive Rio Grande Gorge Bridge

Tim & Debbie outside their cabin at the Rio Colorado Lodge

Per his decades old tradition, Dad (standing) was generous enough to buy everyone a meal at Texas Reds steakhouse. The ribeye's were delicious.

While most of us salivate over the steaks at Texas Reds, this little cutie pie clearly enjoys the dessert. The left picture is from this year's trip, the right one is from last year.

Dad riding through some beautiful Aspen trees on the way up to Goose Lake

Chip & Judy crossing the Red River at the Goose Lake trailhead

Dad & Tim at the majestic Goose Lake. That lake is at a whopping 11,630 feet ... that's 400 feet higher than the top of Greenie Peak!

Dad playfully tailgates Tim while crossing the Red River at the Goose Lake trailhead

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Hiking up to Middle Fork Lake
Aspen trees near Midnight Meadows
Riding up to Goose Lake

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