After our hike in Arches and our lack of desire to stay in Moab anymore, we had to figure out where to move on.
Originally Durango was out because it was going to be too cold. We were thinking we’d have to go all the way around Colorado, down into Arizona and New Mexico. Neither of those options thrilled us since we’ve both been to those places many times. But I took another look at the weather and it had changed. It was actually going to be really nice. I had been to Durango last summer and it seemed very touristy then. But Mike had never been and so many people like it I figured we’d give it another chance. Plus the scenery is supposed to be awesome this time of year. So we headed out in the early evening.
The scenery to get there was pretty and since it was starting to get dark we stopped in Monticello UT in the one campground they have which is basically someones front yard. LOL. We weren’t sure what to make of it but we stayed anyway and when we woke up in the morning and looked around it was really pretty! The people were very nice, too.
Since it was night when we arrived and the town only has one restaurant in the first place, we had one of our swanky RV dinners. Then did some stuff online (almost all campgrounds for RVs have wi-fi now).
In the morning we made our way to Durango, got a campsite just a few blocks from town and biked into town. Cottonwood Camper Park is just a few blocks from town. There are some iffy reviews on the internet about it but it’s mostly people complaining that it’s not scenic. DUH. It’s DOWNTOWN. It was perfect for us (and frankly, plenty scenic, there’s a creek that runs thru it and it’s like 1/4 mile to the bike path and the Animas River). Also, the people who run it are exceptionally nice. Highly recommended.
There’s a nice long bike path along the Animas River right downtown in the historic section. We took a little ride along the path then cut up and over to the historic district where all the shops, bars, cafes, and restaurants are.
Durango is much nicer in the fall than in the summer. Not as crowded and the leaves are all yellow and orange and up against a backdrop of snowy peaks. It’s still pretty touristy with tee shirt shops, etc. But they also have some good restaurants.
First we stopped into a bar that was supposed to have good food. But the menu wasn’t all that appealing to me- I wanted a cheeseburger and they didn’t have them there. Plus I was tired and getting cranky. So Mike had a beer and I had a cup of coffee. In a bar. LOL. We felt much more energetic after that so we moved on.
Next we went to a local brewpub- Carver Brewing Company– and tasted some beers and had some lunch. I had a really good buffalo burger and Mike had an awesome steak sandwich with peppers and onions and stuff. Sounds pretty basic but it was really delicious.
They try to be pretty healthy over at Carver’s, even their ketchup is HFCS free.
After lunch and wandering around in all the shops, we stopped by a French bakery and I had a latte and the best almond croissant I’ve had in a long time. It was late afternoon and the croissants were all “buy one, get one free”. Mike had a glass of milk (!?) and a chocolate croissant.
The decor was really neat. Exposed brick walls, high beamed ceilings, but still very cozy with antiques and comfy chairs.
We just had their baked goods but they are also a full service French restaurant and wine bar. Next time we’ll try those!Jean Pierre Bakery, Durango, CO
Anyhow, after the bike ride, the wandering, the lunch, and the beer tasting, and the sweets, we were pretty tired so we went back to the RV for the night.
Cookie Puss seemed to like the RV enough when it was stopped.
PJ and his daily meds.
The next day we got up early and biked over to Oscar’s Cafe for breakfast.
I had some scrambled eggs and hash browns, Mike had the corn beef hash and eggs and we shared the French toast. The hash browns were heavily seasoned which I didn’t care for. Hash browns should be good all by themselves! Mike liked his tho. The French toast. OMG. Soooooooo good. Next time I’ll get an order all to myself….:)
After that gluttony we needed a LONG bike ride. We went the other direction on the path than we did the day before.
Then Mike wanted to go fishing so we found a good spot.
After all that activity we were ready for another snack at The Steaming Bean. Their website is pretty lame. The place itself was actually really cute.
Since we’ve become sort of obsessed with hot springs after that great experience at Yampahin Glenwood Springs, we’ve been searching out hot springs in different places. We found a “famous” one in Durango and seeing as how Durango is sort of an upscale resort area, we decided to go. We don’t have any pictures because it was a little bit creepy. The pictures on the website only kind of look like the real place and there are NO pictures of the one hot pool, probably for good reason. They say it’s clean and we didn’t develop any strange diseases but it really doesn’t look that great. It was oddly relaxing, tho and we had fun whispering mockery to each other (“How many of these people do you think are sex offenders?” “How many people are in here?” That kind of thing. ). Anyhow, we probably won’t be going back. It was expensive for what it was, the locker rooms were no good, and there was only one hot pool.
After that we went back to the RV and got ready to go to dinner at Ken and Sue’s. There were other places that were more exciting to me, but they were all closed- it was Sunday night. Ken and Sue’s got great reviews, tho, and it was really good.
We wanted to save room for dessert but were unable to. They supposedly have a fantastic chocolate souffle. It was a really good place but you could tell locals don’t ever go there. I’m sure locals don’t go anywhere near the historic district and next time I’d like to find out where they DO go.