Hold onto your seat! The Million Dollar Highway will give you beautiful mountain views as you wind around each bend in the road.
As we climbed elevation through miles of gorgeous scenery, our view spanned across mountainsides of forest, waterfalls, cliffs, historic mining shacks and even some fresh snowcapped peaks. In the bright sunshine, I wanted each view to soak into my memory so I could see it again when I chose. Memories don’t work the way I wish, so I took plenty of photos to compensate.
My husband and I have driven many mountain roads and were told the Million Dollar Highway was an experience to be had. We didn’t think too much of it as we began our journey and reminisced about a few roads we were familiar with. Suddenly, the cliff barely holding the road we were using as our traveling foundation grabbed our attention. The edge of the asphalt was the cliff! Where the asphalt ended the cliff existed! I couldn’t look at the section of cliff that was wearing away under the asphalt. If I didn’t deliberately focus on the beautiful scenery to avoid the stress, the edge of the road would have had control of my entire experience.
Prior to us taking to the road, we viewed pictures at the Silverton Visitors Center of the 1800’s when the miners were leading the mules on the narrow pathway. Proving, assumptions can be misleading, as I assumed as time has past and the road has been paved, the road would have widened in the process. My assumption has now proven to be simply an assumption…
Once we reached our destination of Ouray and drove around a bit looking at the old buildings.
We made our usual stop at the Visitors Center…..
Exiting the Visitors Center, it took a moment to realize what puzzled me about this picture I stood over until I realized, it’s not the concept of swimming during the month of May, it’s swimming while surrounded by snowcapped mountains that created a hesitation in comprehending my view.
I discovered Hot Springs are located in multiple areas around Ouray and provide water temperatures warm enough to offer swimming year around, no matter what the temperature is in this glorious mountain region.
We asked our typical question while at the Visitors Center. “What does Ouray have that we don’t want to miss?” “Box Canyon” was the answer we received.
Box Canyon provided great views overlooking the town during our hike to the top of the canyon. Venturing through 2 well marked paths, we were able to go inside the canyon, stand next to the waterfall, in addition to viewing the canyon from multiple levels. Old mining equipment is still in place from days of the past.
We could have continued on to Ridgeway but our obligations required us to head back towards Durango. During our return drive on The Million Dollar Highway, we made a quick stop at another waterfall. I can only imagine how may falls are flowing that cannot be seen or heard from the highway. I find it amazing how loud the rush of the water is yet the sound gets lost in short distance.
Ridgeway will be on our map for our return trip to Colorado.