...are we doing? Well, there comes a time in a fella's life (and a gal's too) when a certain "been there, done that" feeling overtakes you as you gaze over suburbia. I could put on my liberal freedom-hater rant shirt and go to town here, but I don't think so. The reality is, suburbia has been very good to me and mine. I have lived on the Front Range of Colorado for 20 years now. It's offered me gorgeous sunsets, friends, shopping and movies a'plenty, and all the coffee shop latte's I could possible stand. It's been a good deal.
Maybe it's a kind of mid-life crisis, I don't know. Why do sane people pick up and move to the mountains? It's cold! There's bears! The roads aren't even paved for cryin' out loud!
I have visited that small corner of Colorado called Ridgway several times over the past years, each time with that question whispering in the back of my head.
And then I get there. And I go, "Oh yeah. This is why. Ahhhhhh...." (that's the sound of filling your lungs with clean mountain air tinged with pinon, pine, aspen and sage. Or the sound of looking up at a billion stars on a quiet night.)
For those who don't know, Ridgway is a small town in the SW corner of Colorado. It sits in a flat valley where the Uncompahgre River emerges from the steep, rugged, spectacular San Juan mountains. The elevation is about 7000 feet, the population about 900 full time residents. It contains the only traffic light in Ouray County. It's a metropolis compared to the rest of the county, which is full of farms, ranches, pinon benches, canyons, rugged cliffs, aspen meadows, and dozens of snow covered peaks above tree line. It is a place where large non-human mammals outnumber the humans many times over.
It is a place for fresh starts. For us, it's a place to homestead.
And why not? What is the point of wisdom not applied, not used for anything?
So Margaret and I have purchased a 6-acre parcel of land on a quiet, dead end county road, in a sunny spot on a mesa above the Uncompahgre and the valley floor. It's not as rustic as you might think: We have electricity and running water right at the lot line. We have neighbors. But we don't have covenants. Or anything obstructing our view of Cimarron Ridge across the valley.
So, welcome to this blog! In this blog, I'd like to chronicle our adventure of homesteading and making a new life in Ridgway, from the very beginning. Hopefully we can also share some of what makes this place so incredibly special to us. Thanks for reading!