This morning we started our day in La Junta, CO, at 9:30 a.m. and it was already 96 degrees. We were headed for Canon City, CO, to the Royal Canon Bridge. After driving about 20 miles, we were able to see the Rocky Mountains. They truly are beautiful. What was interesting was how peaked they are. Our Appalachian Mountains are much older, and therefore have been worn down over the years by the weather to nice rounded mountain tops which these definitely are not!
The Royal Canon Bridge is a steel bridge that was built to cross the canyon pictured in the top right and bottom right.. Those pictures were taken on the bridge looking down the canyon. The picture on the lower
left is the bridge we walked across. The wind was blowing, so the bridge was shaking slightly, and Brooke and I were walking quite slowly!
After we walked across the bridge, there was a small settlers museum we looked around. There we saw the worst actors we had ever seen perform a medicine man's short skit. Then we walked back across the bridge and by then, storm clouds had moved in and the wind was really blowing. Brooke and I ran into the visitor's center, while Jerry, Blair and Molly got on a AeroCar to go across the gorge. As soon as they got to the other side, a huge bolt of lightening cracked right over the gorge. Brooke was scared to death, the aerocar closed, and Jerry, Blair and Molly were stuck on the other side of the bridge. So they started walking back a little before it starting raining so hard it was even hailing. So they waited in one of those settler museums until they could catch a tram over to the visitor's center. When the rain calmed down to a drizzle, we went out to ride the "steepest railway in the world" to the bottom of the canyon to the river. But Molly and Blair were wet, the
storm had dropped the temperature to the 60s, and there was a line to ride the railway, so we decided we'd had enough and we headed out. We actually used the heater in the car for a little while, which was amazing considering we started the day at 96 degrees at 9:30!
Then we went to Bishop's Castle which was about an hour's drive south of the canyon. We found out about this castle from the restaurant owner in Dodge City. Bishop's Castle is being built by one man, who is an individual. The castle is open to the public and you can walk throughout the castle and in all of the little torrents. You have to goggle Bishops Castle. There is even a youtube video. Words can not really describe it!
Since 1955, Jim Bishop has been getting rock nearby and building this castle by himself one truckload of stones at a time. We climbed through the castle and Jerry, Molly and Blair even went into the circular iron part at the top of the the above picture. Jerry also went to the top of the front where he said the wind was crazy, but you could see the plains. This is one of the girls favorite spots so far. It really was unique!
Then we drove on. We ended up driving a total of 294 miles before we stopped for the night at Alamosa, CO. Before we got to Alamosa, we drove past Blanca Peak, one of the mountains in the Rockys and the sign said that the elevation was over 14,000! The summit of the mountain was lost in clouds. Incredible!