Category: Great Sand Dunes NP to Moab, Uttah

Great Sand Dunes to Moab

June 27, 2022 

It rained all night, which I would think is unusual for this area. Yesterday we were able to book another night in Capitol Reef National Park. We had one night in site 28. Now we have a second night in site 29. They have had some terrible flooding. Hopefully it will be OK when we get there in 9 days.

We hooked up and got on the road a little after 8:00. The rains subsided as we drove south on 150 and turned west on 160 again. 160 has proven to be a great and beautiful road to travel. Driving through the cute little town of Alamosa, I spotted a Starbucks, the first we have seen in quite a while. I put on my blinker looking for a place to park and started to turn when I noticed a car coming behind me in the left lane. I really had not realized we were on a four lane road separated by stores. When the car passed, I turned into a vacant lot. the car was a state policeman, and he pulled in too.

Aren’t I an idiot? All for a cup of coffee I really didn’t need. Sergeant Noga, of the State Police, approached the car with what I thought was a very slight smile. “You were trying to make a left turn from the right lane.” “I know it. I was trying to get a cup of coffee”, I said. “You almost hit me. I had to swerve to avoid you.” “I know it. I’m sorry”, I said as I handed him my license and registration. He went to his car to check me out while I just shook my head. “When did this turn into a four lane?” I asked Martha. 

After about five minutes, he walked back to the truck and handed my license, registration and his card to me. With a little smirk, he said, “You can go get your coffee now. Be careful driving.” I smiled, thanked him and gave him a fist bump. Whew! What a nice guy! I walked back and got a cup of coffee, even though I didn’t need one now.

As I am writing this up, I read the card he gave me. “Officer Noga of the Colorado State Patrol has contacted you as a result of a traffic stop. If you have comments (positive or negative) about this traffic stop, you should contact the office on the front of this card using the information provided.”

We are living in a time where some want to defund the police. Here is what the other side of the card says:

“The mission of the Colorado State Patrol is to ensure a safe and secure environment for all persons by utilizing the strengths of our members to provide professional law enforcement services that reflect our core values of Honor, Duty and Respect.”

I sent a $100 Starbucks card to the Alamosa Patrol with gratitude and respect.

We crossed the very pretty Rio Grande River at Monte Vista, then followed it for a while.160 climbs through the San Juan Mountains surrounded by beautiful, green scenery and through Wolf Creek Pass at 10,856’. Headed down the west side, we missed a crowded parking lot for Treasure Falls, but we had a full day of travel, so on we went. 

160 then follows the beautiful San Juan River. We took a drive through very busy Durango, filled up with gas and stopped for lunch on the other side of town. You know you are in the west when I noticed a moss-covered elk antler next to the trailer. 

We drove past places we will return to in a few weeks, Canyons of the Ancients and Mesa Verde.  We got a pretty good look at National Monument, Chimney Rock. At Monticello (pronounced Cello), we turned north on 191. Soon we began to see rocks and cliffs. 

We arrived at Portal RV Resort in Moab, Utah at about 3:30. As we were unhooking and setting up, a man stopped to talk with Martha. Bob Dombrowe lives in Crozet and used to live in Glenmore (our development)! 

We ended up going to dinner with him. He loves this area and came to ride motorcycles through back roads and canyons of the area. He told us all the best places to go, gave us brochures, then took us for a drive along the Colorado River where a bike/running trail winds its way through a beautiful canyon. You can get to this from the campground, and it will be a great place for Karen to run. 

Bob is like a tour guide, knowing the area well. He is on the Crozet Tunnel board and told us the history. I didn’t know there were five tunnels, some of which have been “unroofed”. I was also interested in the history of Claudius Crozet, who designed the tunnels. He taught at VMI, where there is a building in his name.

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