A Day Trip Over Cottonwood Pass
Yet another wonderful blue sky Colorado day so I was up early and headed south to travel the road over Cottonwood Pass.
In my Colorado Benchmark Atlas, I noticed a note on the map showing a Mountain Goat Viewing Area down a side road off the road to the pass, so I ventured down that-away. The viewing area was on the opposite side of the road from this small lake, dotted with early morning fisherman.
Now there certainly was some very mountain “goaty” looking terrain down the road, but the only wildlife I encountered were these two ground squirrels. I spent quite a bit of time scanning the vertical cliffs above the road with my binos, but did not find any goats.
As was the case with my trip over Independence Pass a couple of days ago, the scenery along the road was nothing short of breathtaking.
The road is paved all the way to the pass ( elevation 12,126′ ) from the east side and turns into a fairly wide, pretty much great gravel road down the west side. There are some switchbacks on the west side and short sections of washboarded surface, but all in all, a good gravel road, as witnessed by the number of large 5th wheels and motorhomes traversing the route to Taylor Park Reservoir.
I wonder if this scenery eventually gets taken for granted by folks that live here?
This is a distant shot of Taylor Park Reservoir where there are two campgrounds, a primitive one at the north end with 6 or 7 nice flat level pull throughs for large rigs, and a nice more developed large campground at the south end that had many sites with utilities and several were large enough for big rigs.
At the reservoir, I turned around and retraced my steps back home, a yet another gorgeous trip through the mountains of Colorado.
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