Be a Kind in God’s Games Room: Colo(u)rado, Part 2

After seeing mountains, snow, giant blue bears and punks of steam in the first half of Colourado, I’m now taking a more gentle, meandering drive towards New Mexico.

Victor Gold Town

The old mining towns of the gold rush give way to beautiful countryside, at times a blanket of trees, at others a scramble of rocks and shrubs. It also gives way to that peculiar trait of countries to hunt after superlatives. Colourado’s offering is near Canon City and is the Royal Gorge Bridge, the highest suspension bridge in the world (slipping the word “suspension” in when China built an even higher bridge in 2001). For some reason, every time I saw it (and still until I was writing this post), I assumed that it was called the Royal George Bridge and couldn’t work out why. I arrived in the car park and decided that, for $25.00 a person, it was a bit steep to wander across a bridge. The car park was partially fenced off, I can only think, to prevent you seeing this thing for free. Of course you can just go a few yards further up:

Royal Gorge(Since visiting, the park was devastated by a wildfire, which destroyed almost everything except the bridge itself. Not sure if I should feel guilty about not paying for it now… but onwards)

I decided to avoid the Interstate on my way to New Mexico, instead favouring the bendy, tiny roads sweeping through the hills and following the rivers. The rivers are often flanked on one side by the road, on the other by the railroad tracks:

River RailI pause when I reach the town of Salida. It looks like a perfectly plain town with one slight oddity:

Salida HillI’m … not sure. Is God using this town as a Scrabble piece? Who lives up on the hill, Mr. S? Sir Sibilance? I stand beside my car taking a picture of the hill thinking “Well, every town deserves one oddity”. I lower the camera and see, across the street, this sound advice:

Be A KindI’m not sure if it’s recommending that you be a kind in general, or under fear of being shot with some sort of hubcap-launching crossbow, but either way: Be a Kind.

Hills and PlainsSouth of Salida the road becomes flatter and straighter as it runs through a broad valley, with this fantastic view to your left:

Colorado Panorama

Click to enlarge.

The road emerges onto a broad, flat plain with little to disturb the horizon for miles and miles. In spite of that, the road still manages to find a hill:

Through the HillI’m just imagining the conversation that had to have happened, presumably in an era when dynamite was given out ten-a-penny.

“We’ll have to go through the hill.”

“You know, if we turn the road a couple of yards we could just go around—“

“Through the hill.”

As I was writing this post I was checking with Google Maps to remind myself of which roads I’d taken. Something that I hadn’t noticed, due to the time of year and me being on the ground, is that Colourado is God’s games room. Salida is his Scrabble set, and here is his Connect Four or maybe his Othello:

Fields of OthelloAnd when God gets tired of the games, He can retire to His home theatre system:

Frontier CinemaThe screen has held up surprisingly well considering this place doesn’t look entirely maintained. Though the car and caravans raise questions themselves:

Cinema ScreenThen you’ve got an ex-Greyhound bus that was converted to some sort of “Church of God In Christ” thing and then released from that:

Greyhound GraveA few miles south I arrive in Monte Vista which is a perfectly normal American town.

Hope's CastleAlso this.

Surprisingly it wasn’t this, er, thing that caught my eye, but rather a seemingly abandoned railroad siding with some trains and carriages that, I suggest, have probably not seen recent use:

Train EngineCarriageMy Colourado trip started with one childhood classic and it finishes with another as, across the road, I spot the Addams Family summer home:

Addams FamilyLess creepy, maybe, but more rat/meth-infused.

Addams FamilyIt’s been a great state, full of beautiful vistas and weird things and if I didn’t have photos to prove it, I would’ve assumed it was all just caused by the rolling clouds of pot-smoke.

Here’s a few more shots of the place:

Maudes Carriage Window Carriage Locking Mechanism Camp Closed

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