Zeb and Soapy Duck Return to Wyoming

I, Zeb the Duck, and Soapy Smith Duck, visited Wyoming.   We went a few weeks ago, before the heavy snow came.   We drove north on I-25 and stopped at the Wyoming Welcome Center.

Wyoming Welcome Center.  A great place

Wyoming Welcome Center.  A great place

You have to visit this place.

This sculpture by Stan Dolega is in the picnic area.

Wind Code by Stan Dolega, 2012

Wind Code by Stan Dolega, 2012

This painting reminds us that Wyoming is a cowboy state.

We like cowboys and rodeos

We like cowboys and rodeos

In the main part of the building the display, Source of Beauty,

Highlighting beautiful waterfalls

Highlighting beautiful waterfalls

changes to highlight some of Wyoming’s natural beauty.   Here is Devil’s Tower.

We liked Devil's Tower

We liked Devil’s Tower

I told you about Devil’s Tower in September, 2013.   This welcome center is similar to a museum.   Many early settlers arrived by covered wagons.

Traveling by covered wagon would be difficult.

Traveling by covered wagon would be difficult.

Others came by railroad.

Then the railroad came

Then the railroad came

The railroad also brought supplies to Wyoming.   However, all that came were not nice people.   We are in jail here with “the kid”.

Mom, get us out of jail

Mom, get us out of jail

But we, the Colorado Traveling Ducks, are nice and we were able to leave the jail.   When the pioneers and early settlers arrived, the Native American Indians lived in tepees.

Ducks in the tepee

Ducks in the tepee

We like to sit in the tepee, but not for too long.

Wyoming has many outdoor activities.  The winter sports include skiing and snowboarding.

Ski and snowboard in Wyoming

Ski and snowboard in Wyoming

This looks like fun.   We really liked this snowmobile.

We are ready to ride

We are ready to ride

Let’s go mom!   Summer sports include hiking, rock climbing and mountain biking.

Wyoming has year round activities

Wyoming has year round activities

Wyoming has so much to do all year.

Wyoming also had earlier settlers.  Herds of Columbian Mammoths roamed Wyoming 11,000 to 200,000 years ago.   These bones show you just how big these guys were.

Columbian Mammoth

Columbian Mammoth

This welcome center has everything.  The restrooms were very clean, the staff friendly and knowledgeable and there are many brochures for you.  You can learn so much about Wyoming that you could be a tourist here for years.  When you visit Wyoming, stop at this welcome center first. It is on I-25 exit 4.   You will be amazed by all the things to see.

Happy Thanksgiving 2014

The Colorado Traveling Ducks and their humans wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving.   We, in the United States of America, have so much to be thankful for.   We give thanks for our freedom, our way of life, and our friends and family.  We also give thanks for these beautiful Colorado sunsets.

Colorado sunset in November, 2014

Colorado sunset in November, 2014

Vincenza’s for Lunch

I, Zeb the Duck, and mom met friends at Vincenza’s Italian Restaurant and Bakery, in Wheat Ridge, Colorado.

Vincenza's

Vincenza’s

Lunch was wonderful.  All the humans ordered Italian Sausage Sandwiches with a small bowl of minestrone.  They loved the food.  Two ordered the sandwich with white bread and one ordered wheat bread.

Zeb, Channel and Winnie with lunch

Zeb, Channel and Winnie with lunch

They said the soup was really good and had a little spice, but certainly not overpowering.  The sandwiches were big and each human lady took half a sandwich home for a later lunch.

This restaurant was part of the Wheat Ridge Dairy but has been Vincenza’s Bakery for 13 years now.   The décor was cute and Italian.

Nice picture

Nice picture

The bread is freshly baked here.

We love fresh bread

We love fresh bread

It is so good.   Mom had friends here, and so did I.  My friend, Channel the Bear, was here. I also met a new friend, Winnie the Pooh.

This sounds good

This sounds good

Winnie, Channel and I enjoyed the afternoon a lot.

You will like this restaurant, and as I said, it is also a bakery.  Look at this stuff.

Yum

Yum

So good.  Vincenza’s also caters.

Catering?  Great idea

Catering? Great idea

You should try this place.   We liked it and we think you will also.

Pinecliffe, Colorado

About 40 miles from Denver, in Coal Creek Canyon, is the little town of Pinecliffe.

We visited Pinecliffe, Colorado

We visited Pinecliffe, Colorado

I, Zeb the Duck, and Soapy Smith Duck, stopped there.   Our first stop was the Pinecliffe Post Office.

We loved this post office and the post mistress was so nice

We loved this post office and the post mistress was so nice

We went inside for mom to purchase a sheet of stamps.   This post office is great for stamp collectors. Mom looked through the book of available stamps. She had not even seen some of them.  We left the post office with much more than on e sheet of stamps.  And, I think we will be back. Mom saves some of the sheets, but she likes to use different stamps on the mail we send.

This Union Pacific train came through Pinecliffe.

We love trains.  Doesn't everyone?

We love trains.  Doesn’t everyone?

Mom thinks we had a relative that worked for the railroad and lived in Pinecliffe.  We like trains.

Pinecliffe is a pretty little town in the mountains and South Boulder Creek flows through town.   This is a view from the road looking upstream, back to town.

Looking back to Pinecliffe

Looking back to Pinecliffe

This is South Boulder Creek flowing away from town toward Denver and Boulder.

South Boulder Creek flowing down the mountain

South Boulder Creek flowing down the mountain

We liked peaceful Pinecliffe, and we like knowing that a relative lived and worked here many years ago.  You would enjoy driving in Coal Creek Canyon and visiting Pinecliffe.

Scenic Western Colorado

We all know and love the incredible mountain scenery of Colorado. We are familiar with the ski areas and the towns of the Front Range.  But, I, Zeb the Duck, and Soapy Smith Duck, want to show you a little more about western Colorado.

Western Colorado

Western Colorado

This week we have shown you the town of Marble, the coal mining towns of Somerset and Bowie and the majestic Black Canyon of the Gunnison.

These photos are random scenes in the same area.

Love these bridges

Love these bridges

This part of Colorado has valleys and meadows with mountains and rivers.  There are fewer people living here than near Denver and Colorado Springs.

Beautiful valley

Beautiful valley

Some roads are designated scenic, but all go through beautiful country.

Down any road

Down any road

When you are in western Colorado, just pick a road and drive. You will not be disappointed.

Today we just wanted to remind you that Colorado really is a beautiful state.

Such clear water in streams

Such clear water in streams

Not just a state with a few beautiful places.

Rivers, mountains and beautiful blue skies

Rivers, mountains and beautiful blue skies

You can tell that Zeb, Soapy and all the Colorado Traveling Ducks love living in Colorado and appreciate all it has to offer.

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

I couldn’t see the bottom.   I, Zeb the Duck, and Soapy Smith Duck went to the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park in Western Colorado.

National Parks are always spectacular

National Parks are always spectacular

We went to the north rim of the canyon. Our first stop was The Narrows.

Ready to check it out

Ready to check it out

We went right to the edge of the canyon and could not see the bottom.

Not too close to the edge, please

Not too close to the edge, please

This great slit in the Earth is so narrow that sunlight penetrates to the bottom only at midday.

Wow

Wow

We were there late afternoon, so no bottom in sight. This place is sheer rock. Amazing to see, but difficult to photograph.

Takes our breath away

Takes our breath away

You have to see this park.

Next we stopped at Balanced Rock.

Venturing to the rim again

Venturing to the rim again

This stop did have a fenced lookout point.

Still scary for ducks

Still scary for ducks

We could see a little more, but still very steep cliffs, very deep and not much light at the bottom.

What a great canyon

What a great canyon

From the fenced lookout point, we did see a little of the Gunnison River.

The mighty Gunnison River

The mighty Gunnison River

Mom read that the south rim has more pull over places and maybe a better view of the Gunnison River.   The National Geographic book, Guide to National Parks says sheer walls of dark gray stone rise more than 2,700 feet above the swift and turbulent Gunnison River to create one of the most dramatic canyons in the country.   If you like to hike, there are many trails here. Some go from the rim of the canyon to the river far below. Most of these trails are rated difficult, but we think they would be incredible. We did not hike, but we did walk around parts of the north rim. You may see ravens, golden eagles or peregrine falcons.   The park is also home to many wild animals including bear and mule deer.

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

You will really appreciate seeing the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.   We hope to see you there soon.

You should see this

You should see this

Western Colorado Coal Mines

Driving through Western Colorado, I, Zeb the Duck, and Soapy Smith Duck, saw coal mines.  We were there, but did not get in any photos.  Coal mining is big and we ducks are very small.

Inclines to transport coal in Somerset

Inclines to transport coal in Somerset

Coal mining began in Somerset and Bowie, Colorado in 1902.   The mining is underground, but it does not appear that the mines are active now.

The first town we entered was Somerset.

Welcome to Somerset

Welcome to Somerset

This is some of what we saw there.

To transport coal

To transport coal

Coal mining has been a major source of employment for people since 1902.

Pile of coal in Somerset, Colorado

Pile of coal in Somerset, Colorado

Further down the road, we found Bowie.  In 1902 the King Mine opened.

Photo from roadside sign on West Elk Loop

Photo from roadside sign on West Elk Loop

This mine was owned and managed by three generations of the Bowie family.  We liked this sign, the photo and explanation of coal mining in Colorado.  Hope you like it, too.

There is a lot of history here.

Bowie coal inclines

Bowie coal inclines

Coal mining employed many people in this area of Colorado.   The coal was transported from the mines to other areas of Colorado and the country.

These inclines moved coal from mines to railroad cars to be transported

These inclines moved coal from mines to railroad cars to be transported

However the outlook for coal mining here does not look very bright.  We hope you visit Somerset and Bowie soon.

 

Marble, Colorado with Zeb and Soapy Smith Duck

Western Colorado’s town of Marble should not be missed.

Entering Marble, Colorado

Entering Marble, Colorado

Leaving highway 133 the road to Marble shows bright homes

Really loved the flowers and this home near Marble

Really loved the flowers and this home near Marble

and beautiful Colorado scenery.

Beautiful place to fish but no fishing poles with us.

Beautiful place to fish but no fishing poles with us.

This area was open for fishing. Continuing on the road to Marble you will see marble blocks

Large pieces of marble

Large pieces of marble

waiting to be carved or used in monuments and buildings.

The Marble Gallery has many marble sculptures outside.

The Marble Gallery has so much stuff

The Marble Gallery has so much stuff

This cat looks ready to hunt.

Tell him we are friendly ducks, not tasty ducks

Tell him we are friendly ducks, not tasty ducks

Zeb and Soapy Smith Duck are a little nervous.

Great detail here

Great detail here

This fish is huge.

Zeb and Soapy could never land a fish of this size

Zeb and Soapy could never land a fish of this size

These were the only bears we saw today.

Mom and cub

Mom and cub

Marble, Colorado is the home of the Yule Marble Quarry.   Marble from this quarry was used to construct the Lincoln Memorial in 1914.   Also in Washington DC marble from the Yule Marble Quarry was used for the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in 1930.

The Crystal River area provides many outdoor activities during the entire year. The river runs clear and the scenery is unsurpassed.

Beaver Lake but we do not have a canoe

Beaver Lake but we do not have a canoe

Marble is also home to Beaver Lake where many enjoy non-motorized watercraft activities. Marble is a small town, showing the beauty and outdoor wonders of Colorado. We hope you visit this friendly town soon.

Veteran’s Day 2014

We, the Colorado Traveling Ducks, and our humans, wish you all a very Happy Veteran’s Day.  This day, November 11, 1918, is recognized as the end of the battles of World War I.  This holiday was first called Armistice Day, but President Eisenhower changed it to Veteran’s Day.

We thank all of you that have served or are presently servicing.   We appreciate and value your sacrifice to preserve our freedom.

Thank you Veterans

Thank you Veterans