End of Season Camping at Ruby Mountain

3 10 2010

Ruby Mountain campground is 1 of 5 camping areas within the Arkansas River Headwater Recreation Area managed by the state of Colorado.  Located about 10 miles south of Buena Vista, Ruby Mountain has only 19 primitive sites, most located alongside the Arkansas River.  We selected sites #1 and #2, both back-in sites with fire ring and picnic table. 

Ruby Mountain - Arkansas HeadwatersOriginally we were headed to Railroad Bridge, another Arkansas Headwater campground.  About 10 miles north of Buena Vista, this campground promised to be the most remote, and according to the park ranger we would probably have it all to ourselves.  But, after arriving at Railroad Bridge, we understood why no one liked these sites.  Sandwiched between the old railroad line and a dusty, dirt road, these handful of sites didn’t offer any appeal  for us.

Even before deciding to try out the Arkansas Headwaters area, we had planned to head to the southwestern corner of Colorado to stay at the Black Canyon of the Gunnison.  But, with only a 2 day weekend available, we opted to drive 2 hours from home instead of 5 hours.  Hopefully we’ll get to explore camping at the Black Canyon next year.

During the two days we spent at Ruby Mountain we were treated to beautiful high-country blue skies with warm daytime temps and crisp cool evenings.  On Saturday afternoon after driving into Buena Vista for some firewood, we returned to the campground just in time to see a real western cattle drive.  About 200 cattle and several cow-pokes were on the final leg of a two-day round-up moving the cattle from high summer pastures to their winter home.  Their path took them right through the campground and across the river.  Dodging cow-pies, we joined several other campers at the edge of the river to watch the cowboys, cowgirls and dogs managing the reluctant yearlings through the swift waters.  That evening just before dark, one lone yearling wandered into the campground obviously looking for the group that had left him behind.  After several aborted attempts to get the young one across the river (we aren’t cut out to be cowboys) we watched as momma crossed back to our side of the river to retrieve her youngster. 

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With snow beginning to appear on the highest peaks of the Collegiate range, this may well be the last camping of this season.  If so, this blog will be idle for a couple of months until it’s time to once again get the camper ready for the trip to Texas, 2011.




One response

17 06 2013

We will be staying at campsite #1 the first week of July. I can’t wait!!

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