Cortez to Crested Butte
We trade high desert for mountain vistas as we drive from Cortez to Crested Butte in the heart of Colorado. The morning is cloudy with scattered rain showers, while we never get rained on we often have wet pavement. Makes for poor photo ops but speedier travel since the scenic drive would require frequent picture stops under sunny skies. We especially enjoy the thick green forest, jagged mountain peaks and alpine lakes.
From Cortez we follow the San Juan Scenic Byway along the Dolores River, up Lizard Head Pass, to Telluride and across the Dallas Divide to Ridgway. After lunch at Kate’s Place we leaved the Scenic Byway heading north to Montrose. It appears Montrose has grown up since our last visit, we’re surprised at all the new businesses both national retail stores and local enterprises.
US50 takes us to Gunnison where we turn north for Crested Butte. It’s still off-season in “The Butte”. In a couple more weeks summer adventurers will keep the area hoppin’ until mid-September. The Grand Lodge is open but extremely quiet – translate, great rates.