Mt. Princeton - July

On our way to Mt. Princeton we encountered a long backup due to an accident near US 24 and 285. So after the first person in the traffic line asked to use our camper bathroom (we said no, sorry), we flipped a U and drove 13 miles into Hartsel, population 32. Here you see our rig parked across from the jail...although Kathy had to explain to Randy that this was not really the jail and was actually an abandoned auto repair and fuel station. She took all the nostalgia from Randy in a single sentence.
 

We hit a very cool bar and grill (the only bar and grill) and noticed a very helpful sign for those encountering problems when entering the establishment.
 

Not everything was old in there.
 

We grabbed a table by the window so we could take in the beauty of Hartsel. Speaking of beauty, check out that girl through the glass.
 

Kathy and I ordered the exact same bison burger. It was very, very good.
 

We also had the opportunity to taste some Rocky Mountain Oysters. Kathy had never tried them so the decision to order was easy. Pictured here is the biggest (and only) bite she took.
 

Randy...no problem. He ate the entire basket. Good eatin'!
 

After dinner we decided to spend more time in Hartsel and explore the town. What does a town of 32 people look like? Look at this cool fixer-upper we found.
 

Kathy took this great picture from an different perspective.
 

Kathy wants to move to Hartsel after seeing the school.
 

Here is the Hartsel library.

 

The library is open just 4 days a week for a total of 12 hours.

 

That is one good-looking fire-girl there.

 

This is what a town of 32 people looks like.
 

Later that evening we made it to Mt. Princeton and took our place in site 5.
 

Yes, the girl does come with the camper.
 

Randy ensures the residence for the next few days is level and safe.
 

Mt. Princeton is beautiful.
 

Site 5 has excellent access to the river just past those trees.
 

Kathy chillin'.
 

We cooked breakfast outside using the outdoor kitchen.
 

Randy loves smelling up the campground every morning...with food!
 

Eggs and sausage...yum.
 

Here is the Sprinter outside kitchen. Not pictured is the grill that swings around from the back side.
 

Kathy prepares a light lunch before we take a nap and then head to the hot springs.
 

Veggies, chips, hummus, guac, and Pinot Grigio from New Mexico makes for a great lunch.
 

We took a short hike to the river.
 

The water was cold and flowing fast.
 

This is how Randy sees Kathy and pretty much everyone else.
 

Randy hiking near the river.

 

We took the short drive into St. Elmo, a great little ghost town not far from Mt. Princeton. Kathy checks out the antiques.
 

Every building in St. Elmo is privately owned.
 

Kathy said she prefers the bathroom in the camper to this outhouse.
 

St. Elmo Post Office.
 

It was a really beautiful day exploring St. Elmo.
 

People were much shorter back in the day?
 

The St. Elmo school is being restored.
 

On this trip to St. Elmo we decided we want a Jeep Wrangler so we can explore the trails. Maybe we will buy one for rent-a-daughter Lizzi so she can meet us up there.
 

Super cool and creepy Aspen forest between St. Elmo and Mt. Princeton.
 

Must be scary at night to walk through there.
 

Refreshed from a 2-hour nap, we decide to visit the hot springs. We paid the upgrade to be admitted to the 16-and-over Spa area complete with a lodge, bar, sauna, steam room, and excellent bathrooms with private showers. We had the best Bloody Marys EVER.
 

And yes, we still do this now and then.
 

On the way home we stopped in Woodland Park at the Mexican Fiesta restaurant for the best margs in town. We also watched Germany beat Argentina in the World Cup. Randy was the only person in the place cheering for Germany.

We had another great trip to Mt. Princeton and will be back every year. In 2015 we plan to reserve sites 5 and 7 so Dede and company can tow the Brussel Sprout up with us.
 

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