Sunday we took a drive to St. Elmo, “the most well preserved ghost town in Colorado”. It is another abandoned mining town, but unlike the others we’ve seen, it never burned down, so most of the old wooden buildings are still standing.The current population is said to be 8 people, much less than the number of chipmunks running around town. The general store even sells bags of sunflower seeds for 50 cents to feed them.
All the buildings are privately owned, so you can’t actually go into them, other than the general store, which mainly sells touristy things.
It was fun to walk around and look at the old buildings, and it is in a beautiful setting, especially now that the aspens are beginning to change colors. The overcast skies didn’t make for good pictures that day.
On the road to St. Elmo, we stopped and hiked a half mile trail to Agnes Vaille Falls. Since it’s the dry season, there wasn’t a lot of water in the falls, but it was a nice short hike.
The road follows Chalk Creek, with good views and several nice looking forest service campgrounds along the way.
The Chalk Cliffs.
Monday we went to Salida, on the Arkansas River about 24 miles south of Buena Vista. They also have a riverfront park, so we walked along the trail there. It’s a little more developed right by the river, so not quite as pretty as Buena Vista.
Behind the town is a hill called Spiral Mountain, with a spiral dirt road leading up to the top. We drove about halfway up, then parked and walked to the lookout at the top. Nice views of the river and Salida.
Last night we met Fitz for dinner at Eddyline Restaurant and Brewery in Buena Vista, our second meal there. We had good pizza last week and great portabella mushroom fajitas last night. Their beer is pretty good, too. And we had a good time visiting with someone from “back home.”
Leaving tomorrow for Great Sand Dunes National Park, if we can get Oreo off the picnic table.