Friday, August 09, 2019

First camping trip as a kept man

August 8, 2019

Left home near noon after a slow load-out of the RV, got to Rampart Range Road's campsite number 9 around 1PM and set up camp.  The US Forest Service runs these sites, they're free except for the Flat Rocks Campground but it's a popular spot.  I was lucky to find a spot on Thursday, I expect all the sites (up to 34 that I've seen so far which are labeled campsites) will be full on the weekend.

Not exactly a level spot but it'll do, this is campsite #9.

The novel part?  I didn't bother checking for cellular internet signal before setting up camp!  I could make voice calls which was good enough to check in with my family.  I do have signal, but even using the booster, not usable for work.  But then again, I have none now!

Rode Fiona, the '99 Ural Patrol about six miles south to the Devil's Head Trailhead parking lot.  It's around 2.5+ miles up the gentle sloping, heavily switch-backed trail, to the top. 

 There were spots where things seemed so peaceful and calm

I will admit, I stopped perhaps 4 times on the way up, to catch my breath and wonder when in the heck I'd get to the tower.  Once on the top of Devil's Head, in what the caretaker apparently called "Hell's Half Acre", one gets the first peek at the tower:

Yep, more steps....

The interior of the watch cabin, door was locked.  Apparently, it's still a functional watch station operated by the Forest Service.

You  can walk around the exterior of the watch cabin, some really nice views, almost....almost worth the long hike up and down.

And then, the clouds rolled in and enveloped us on the top, it was like being in a rolling thick fog which caused temperatures to plummet.  I had to put my riding jacket back on to get some warmth.

 Vertigo? Anyone?

The way  back down to the parking lot was easier in that gravity was no longer a foe, except of course on one's knees taking the shock of stepping down grades along the trail.

I thought the clouds/fog made this narrow passage somewhat magical

It was past 7:30PM as I made my way down, and there were still folks on their way up!  Not sure what they were expecting to see, perhaps the top of Devil's Head is magical at night?  I wouldn't be finding out.

Got back to the rig with no issue, a couple of near falls due to loose gravel was it.  Rode home and as I approached the campsite, it decided to rain pretty heavily so I was soaked by the time I got back to the URRV.


Coop a.k.a. Coopdway said...

Very cool tower, thanks for making the effort to get us all of the way to the top!

redlegsrides said...

You're welcome Coop, just don't ask for a repeat hike up that trail. :)