All systems go!
We left on August 24th for a 7 week tour.
This time, we travel to the east coast with performances on the way in Utah, Colorado & Wisconsin.
A beautiful day for traveling through Washington State.
We take Hwy 101 down Hoods Canal to avoid the Seattle area traffic and cross White Pass on "The Road Less Traveled" the southern most pass across the Cascades Mountains in Washington.
Views of Mt. Rainier were spectacular from both the West and East side of the mountain!
As we wind our way down the pass and travel through eastern Washington, the sudden change of the landscape from the west side to the east side of the Cascades is striking as the west is so green and the east is warm brown & golden.
Sunset in Eastern Washington
This is a great stop and the public hot springs are some of the best in the West.
There are several pools, some very hot.
Of course we take advantage of the hot springs after a long day of driving - ahhh!
The one below is set in a beautiful grotto type setting and looks like a Roman bath.
On to Mystic Hot Springs in Utah before our schedule of performances begin in Salt Lake City!
Yes, we do work too:) ( If you can call playing music "work" - this is the most joyful "work" we've done!
Salt Lake City - Beautiful Old Buildings in downtown Salt Lake. This picture below is about 1/5th of the whole building - City Hall is Huge!
Each side of the building has an entrance like this.
Our 2 performances in Salt Lake City were well attended and folks were exceptionally enthusiastic about the program.
We played @ the Anderson - Foothills and Sprague Branch Libraries in Salt Lake City, both are beautiful libraries. Foothills was a very new library built into the hillside.
The Sprague Branch's high-gabled English Tudor style building and was selected by the American Library Association in 1935 as the "Most Beautiful Branch Library in America." The two-level facility was opened in 1928 and has been renovated several times as use continues to increase.
Fortunately for us, both community rooms where we performed had superb acoustics!
Sprague Branch Library -
Cherie Koefod is the librarian who booked us in the Sprague Branch Library. Koefod is the family name of first cousins to Colleen. Cherie is fairly certain she is related to Colleen's cousins as the Koefod's settled into Idaho over 100 years ago. The Koefods are descendants of Arnie Inger Koefod from Bornholm Island.
Colleen is looking forward to talking to her Idaho cousin Dian about this connection!
We'd like to thank Cherie for all her efforts in presenting our program and for the great turn-out!
We head on to Moab for our next performance. We love Moab and the outdoor playground surrounding Moab. We are able to camp a few miles east of town in Sandflat Recreation area and seemed to have the Juniper Campground to ourselves the first night.
Wow, what a great spot on the planet this was!
Incredible views in every direction including of the Lasal Mountains to the east, canyons and table top mesas and a myriad of rock formations.
And what a sunset!
The next day, we start to make preparations for the evening performance, but first we find the community rec center in Moab - what a great place!
Indoor and outdoor pools in a setting that made us think we were staying at a fancy resort in the most awesome setting.
Megan Flynn is the librarian for Grand County Library in Moab. We played here one year ago and we were so happy to be invited back.
Thanks to Meg for making this happen and for all her great assistance and support!
We hope to make Moab a yearly stop on our travels!
This is a plaque at the front entrance to the library, and we could not agree more with this quote.
On to Colorado!
Highway 90 is a little ways south of Moab and for those who want the road mostly to yourself, this is a great way to get to SW Colorado taking you through Paradox Valley.
Paradox Valley is a basin located in Montrose County in the U.S. state of Colorado. The dry, sparsely populated valley is named after the apparently paradoxical course of the Dolores River—instead of flowing down the length of the valley, the river cuts across the middle.
The little towns are remote and of course interesting.
We initially drove past the General Store in Bedrock but stopped and turned around to go back because this store beckoned us back to take a look.
As Colleen was taking a picture of the store, the store's owner, Anthony Pisano came out on the top floor terrace was waving at us. Bedrock store is the oldest and longest running General Store in Colorado.
It was built in 1881 and filled with history of the area including the fact that the town is called Bedrock because that is exactly what it is built on.
Anthony invited us in and showed his work inside to restore this beautiful old store.
We heard about Anthony's plan for the store and told him we would pass the information on to other travelers.
This is a great stop on the road in this most beautiful remote valley.
Anthony offered to take our picture before we leave.
We definitely plan to come back through Bedrock in the future!
We head on down the road to spend the night near Ouray, Colorado and to soak our road weary bones in their beautiful public hot springs. Ouray sits at the base of the San Juan Mountains on the north side of the mountains. We've always loved coming here and driving into Ouray is spectacular!
We find a great camp spot along a creek outside of town and plan our next day's journey to Gunnison, CO where we will begin our Colorado Library performances.
We travel on to Gunnison and have time to explore the neighborhoods. Our walk reveals some very beautiful old stone residences and buildings built in the late 1800's by a master stone mason, Frederick Zugelder.
We head over to the library & take in the colorful Hollyhock in front of the library. Tonight, we play "in the stacks". Since we use the i-phone for our program, we generally take pictures before the performance.
We 'd like to thank the library & all the folks who came out, it was a great turn-out and enthusiastic response in Gunnison.
We appreciated all the great comments and questions. We leave Gunnison the next day and drive through Saguache on the way to Valley View, Hot Springs.
Yes, we do love hot springs in beautiful natural places and know this may be our last hot spring stop before hitting the front range and then heading across the plains to the midwest and east coast.
We have watched Saguache change over a decade.
Some of the old buildings are being painted and a few buildings are being renovated.
More people are moving in and opening a few businesses.
We are drawn to one of the older businesses.
The Crescent News has been in existence since 1867.
We look inside this old building and see the most amazing old print machines.
Initially it does not look like anyone is in, but the sign in the window says "open".
We walk in and standing inside is Dean Coombs who is the paper's entire staff.
The Saguache Crescent was purchased by the Coombs family in 1917, and it has been in the family for three generations.
It still uses a 1921 linotype machine to set the print, and a 1921 printing press.
It features a decorative masthead, no photos, and publishes "all the good news fit to print".
Coombs refuses to print bad news. He says that his mother set that policy and it is non-negotiable.
Dean started working with his dad on the Crescent news as a kid. He took over the paper in his early 20's after his dad's death and says he will continue with this work because what else would he do? He is the only one who can repair these machines. He says the 1921 Linotype machine is the oldest working Linotype in the USA.
( see below)
Time to go to our favorite hot springs in the West - Valley View Hot Springs aka Orient Land Trust.
We cross open range on the way and have a little chat with the local cows.
There are several natural hot spring pools dotting the hillside, a beautiful swimming pool with flow through water, no chlorine.
While the varied natural hot spring pools is wonderful, the camping is also great.
There are a few cabins and bunk rooms to choose from if one would like to sleep indoors on a bed.
We choose a camp site that we have returned to several times, at the end of the road, overlooking the San Luis Valley.
This for us the the best reason to go to Valley View just for the reason of the name of this hot springs - a spectacular "Valley View".
We spend a whole day watching the showers come and go, lightening and beams of light from the heavens.
We still are watching as the sun goes down.
The next day, we head out for LaVeta for our next performance.
But first, we stop at Orient Land Trust sustainable farm which is about 4 miles to the west and a little south of the hot springs on the valley floor.
Here, they have a beautiful organic garden and raise happy animals.
All electricity is powered by their hydroelectric system which comes from the water flowing from the hot springs down to the valley floor.
This farm has been around a few years before the cooperative "bought the farm":)
Ah La Veta, one of our favorite small towns in Colorado. We are so happy to play at the Parkside Gallery hosted by Brent and Babz Seawell.
The Parkside is one of La Veta's most beautiful buildings.
Brent & Babz are great hosts and we always look forward to seeing them. They have played music together for years.
Backstage we saw one of their art pieces which captures the spirit of their duo.
We'd like to thanks Brent & Babz for making it possible for us to go on our yearly pilgrimage to La Veta to play @ the Parkside Gallery.On to Eldorado Springs, the home we left just over 2 years ago to "hit the road". We spend the night on "the flats" above Eldorado Springs, camped in our trusty Sprinter Van. ( many thanks to Kathy! ) At this point ( picture below ) we are hiking over to our Eldo friend's house nearby as we are invited to celebrate Labor Day on Davey Jones deck. Davey has the best spot in Eldorado Springs. Thanks for the great hang Davey!
Our good friend and former neighbor Kathy shows us the diligent work she did on the old Eldorado Springs sign!
Eldorado Springs is certainly one of the most unique and beautiful places to live near a large metropolitan area. It is surrounded by open space and backed by Eldorado Canyon State Park. There are trails in every direction to hike. It seems like one could be 200 miles from the nearest big city. It was great to spend a little time here before moving on to Boulder, our home base for several days while we perform for 3 very fine libraries in Fort Collins, Loveland, Colorado Springs and one home gallery concert with musician & friend Mark Miller.
In Loveland, our librarian arranged to have us play at the Rialto Theater. We were surprised to see a large sandwich board on the sidewalk in front of the Rialto.
We'd like to thank Chuck Ceraso for hosting a home gallery concert in Lafayette, CO. What a great turn-out and chance to see old friends and "mates"!
We were surrounded by Chuck's beautiful paintings which helped to inspire the PoetryMusic even further.
Here is one of our favorite paintings of Chuck's below -
And a special thanks to Mark Miller and Dana Walker for "home base" in Boulder. These good friends have been "instrumental" in supporting PoetryMusic.
Our week in Colorado reminded us of why we lived there for so many years & how much we enjoyed living there. And we know we have more than one home!
We leave Colorado behind as we set out across the prairie crossing eastern Colorado into Nebraska before our next performance in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.
It's too far to reach Wisconsin in a reasonable days drive, so we stop in a Nebraska State Park off the Highway just in time to catch the sunset.
Next Stop, Wisconsin!