The climate, and temperature perfect. As soon as we started up into Turkey Creek Canyon a feeling of elation came over me, a freedom of sorts, hard to explain, but the love of trees, and rock faces surrounding us just made me feel like home. This is one of my favorite canyon drives which is located between Denver and Pine, Colorado. The Canyon area is close to where we lived for eighteen years and our kids grew up. On the way through Denver from I-25S to Kipling Street and on to Route 285 brought back memories for my daughter and me. It was quite emotional going through these areas again.
Staunton State Park was formed from a homestead by the Staunton family who donated their land to be kept pristine and the state of CO added on to it, purchasing some surrounding lands. It is the only park in the US that has the trackchair program which was developed with cooperation of Craig Rehabilitation Hospital in Denver.
Welcome sign, ☺️, getting set up in chair. Volunteer and former firefighter for 38 years, Chris was my driver as you can see he is attached to the chair. I didn’t want to spend my time looking down at the trail so Chris drove the chair. Important, because there were lots of bumps and tricky places. He was a great guy, concerned for our safety and answering my questions–very knowledgeable about the area.
Aspen trees, Ponderosa pine, spruce and a squirrel. You can see the damage done to white aspen bark turned black after deer and squirrels get at it. The meadow to our right holds a stone homestead structure believed to be a possible go between rest for a pony express or the Staunton family from ranch to Denver. I borrowed a pic from Wikipedia of the Abert squirrel so you could see them better. They are named the Prince of Ponderosa Pines and are prevalent in the park. The stone house:
Ponderosa pines are a softwood and grow up to 200 feet. A stopping point on the trail had stone benches next to a stream. Since there has been a drought this year, the stream is small but still beautiful to see and listen to. Our guide Chris said one woman told him to park here next to the stream and come back in an hour😊. My granddaughter recorded the stream for me so I could replay it anytime:
Someone had placed this “offering” near the stream.Made us all wonder what it was for with real roses, baby’s breath, and corn.
End of trail and dinner on way home in our old stomping grounds at Jose O’Sheas restaurant with chicken cheese enchiladas and deep fried ice cream for dessert. Oh mama!