Monday, August 15, 2011

Camping It Up In Red River

We're going full out on the family fun weekends before school starts.  Last weekend we went camping at Mount Taylor and this weekend we went in another direction and headed north to Red River, NM. 

We love Red River.  It's a gorgeous little old mining mountain town.  You ought to visit if you live close enough or even if you don't.  And don't worry if you think you're in're not.  Just about every vehicle there happens to have a Texas license plate. Or Oklahoma.  Even Kansas.  Strange. 

Red River is for everyone.  Families that are old and young.  Singles and couples of any age.  Campers or people who want to live it up in style.  Bikers of both the motor and non motor kind.  Recreational seekers or those who want to stay in town.  It's full of all sorts of activities.

We've done everything from staying in a hotel, to staying in a cabin, to staying in an RV park in Red River.  And now we've camped there. 

So fresh off our weekend of camping....I'll give you the play by play with tons of pictures and rambling commentary.  Feel free to skip this post unless you're a grandparent.  If you're a grandparent I expect you to ooh and ahh over all the pictures of your grandbabies.  Now proceed....

We camped at the Fawn Lakes Campground a couple of miles away from the town of Red River.  It was actually on the river.  We lucked out and got the last campsite on the river.  It was beyond beautiful.

Our tent was about 12 feet from the river and we had plenty of room to set up our sun shade (which we rarely used) and to just play. 

We were greeted by a mama duck and her five duckettes.

They really liked animal crackers.  The kids were even happy to share their snack with the ducks.  I think perhaps these ducks had been fed from campers before.  Either that or ducks are programmed at birth to find young children with snacks. 

After a lovely supper of tomato soup we headed into town.  The kids played at the play set, which is one of their favorite things in Red River.

And everyone was excited to see a bear up in the mountains.  Chewy freaked out, though I don't think she actually saw the bear.  It was so far away I could only manage a really bad zoomed in and fuzzy shot of it. 

We took the kids go karting.  Scooter rode with me.  We ended up with the dud kart.  I had that sucker floored the entire time and we got passed by everyone.  We still had fun. 

Chewy rode with Biker Boy and got the ride of her life.  She was smiling the entire time.  Apparently she likes to go fast.  She didn't get that from me.

Back at the campsite we took a walk to the Fawn Lakes.  The kids actually biked.

There are three lakes that are popular places to fish.  The lakes are just the river dammed up.

We didn't fish.  We just enjoyed the beautiful outdoors.

The next day we got up early to get a head start on the weather.  Storms were forecasted and tend to roll in during the afternoons during monsoon season.  The kids were all ready with their Camelbaks.  Those were one of the best hiking purchases Biker Boy ever made.  The kids love them and tend to hike even farther with their packs.  Plus they carry their own snacks, coats, and water now.  We don't keep having to stop to get their their water bottles now.  Bonus. 

We were going to do the hike out to Lost Lake, which is 5 miles one way.  But we always keep our expectations low.  We started off and the kids were having the best time because we were hiking next to the East Fork of the Red River.  We even took a few "alternate trails" off of the main trail so that we could stay next to the river.  We weren't the only ones to do this.  Don't worry.

One mile in we came to the intersection for Lost Lake.  The sky was already looking dark, so we decided to take the shorter hike.  We took the turn to Middle Lake, which was only another mile.  We had to cross the river.  Kids love that.  Dogs too. 

After a mile of switchbacks and steep "short-cuts" we arrived at the mountain lake.  It was beautiful.  We took the self-timer portrait of the family by it.

We skipped rocks and ate snacks.  Took a bathroom break.  Maybe that was already the third bathroom break of the day.  The camelbaks are also good for ensuring lots of bathroom breaks in the woods.

Then it started to rain.

Then it started to thunder loudly and we hightailed it down the mountain.

We got to cross the river again and tried to get a picture of the kids and dog.

Chewy pouted for me because she was Daddy's "little hiking buddy" and didn't get to go with the boys for their bathroom break.  Scooter was my little hiking buddy.

We did a little bush whacking hiking to see the river and cross it a few more times.

The dog loved it.  Especially seeing all the chipmunks and squirrels that were abundant everywhere.

Scooter happened to fall on his bottom in the river just once.  I missed getting a picture of it, but caught the moment where he stood up and was like, "What happened?  Why did you let go of me Daddy?"  He dried off fairly quick.

The river was really pretty.  Wanna see?

A surprise bonus was some raspberries on the trail that the bears had missed.  Yum.

And Chewy made up to me for being pouty by offering me a flower.  Sweet girl. 

And we took another self portrait shot on a bridge.  You don't want to know how long it took us to get this photo.  Whew.  And apparently Chewy and I don't have much hiking style sense.  Thank goodness we don't care.  Although Chewy looks cute in anything she wears.....there's something good about being four. 

We went back into town after hiking.  No photographic evidence.  It was raining and I didn't bring the camera.  We took a hike behind town and up the ski hill a ways.  We saw a deer up close and personal and I was kicking myself for not bringing the camera.  We indulged in town food and ice cream.  We looked into renting a jeep for that afternoon or the next day, but they were all booked up.  We're going to do that next time.

Back at camp we took a hike along the river.  Scooter had to find a big stick to take back to our campsite.

The big stick was to "fish" with.  He didn't catch anything.

Then the kids decided that they should clean up in the river.  It was about 35 degrees F.

Biker Boy eventually joined them.  I didn't.  I took pictures.

Me thinks their feet got a little cold.  And dontcha love the hiking socks marks?

Note to self:  next time the kids go in the river with sandals.  We found 2 fishing hooks and line on the shore after the barefoot exploration in the water.

We toasted marshmallows over a campfire.  I forgot the chocolate.

Scooter won the award for the most perfectly toasted marshmallow.  Both Biker Boy and I managed to burn ours.

While it's fun to do things, it's also fun just hanging out with our kiddos. I got to snuggle in my sleeping bag with a giggling Chewy.  Both kids played well together.  Scooter even read a book to Chewy's baby doll. 

I even managed to get a decent picture of Scooter.  That doesn't happen very often.

The day we left we took off on a hike on the Pioneer Creek Trail.  We do this trail almost every time we visit.  It's fairly easy and there are some interesting things to see.

There are old mining entrances. 

Some collapsed.

Others you can still go in. 

The dog ventured the furthest.

There are old mining cabins.

There were raspberries everywhere along the trail.  This hike took a long time because we were constantly stopping to pick berries.

We did a little bushwhacking.

We did a little stream crossing.

We had a great time!

And because I's some flashback pictures from our other travels to Red River.  They were all for the Enchanted Circle Century Bike Ride.
2006 - Started of Enchanted Circle Tour in Red River

2006 - Scooter in the playground

2006 - Me in front of that same cabin.  About 14 weeks pregnant with Chewy.  In the same outfit 5 years later, that's how much I shop.

2007 - Family in the front of the old mining cabin

2007 - My family in Red River.  My the kiddos have grown!

2009 - Family at the Red River playground

2009 - Tandem bike in the hail and storm.  We took refuge in the trees.

2009 - Crossing the stream that leads to Middle Lake.  We didn't make it to the lake that time.

And now school starts tomorrow! 

What did you do this weekend?  What's coming up this week?  Anyone else ever visit Red River?  What do you like to do there?

1 comment:

  1. Awesome post! I love reading and seeing pictures of your hikes/camping!!!


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