Thursday, July 12, 2012

Day 6

Day 6
Somewhere southwest of Liberal, KS - Rye, Colorado

 Waking somewhere in a field in Oklahoma.

 Harper is our morning person.

Factory cattle farm. This was actually the only one we've seen so far. Lots of free grazing cattle. We were told later that they let cattle free graze at first and then send them to feed lots like this to fatten up for slaughter.

We were lost among the maze of private property in the Oklahoma fields. This nice guy happily  lead us off his property (7,000 acres) and back out onto the public roads. He informed us that private roads are better maintained than the public roads out there. We had been on his property with him following us for three miles.


We stopped at this cute little park in Springfield, Colorado for several hours to let the kids play while Jesse worked on our routes.

Recess in the park.

They had a blast playing right here until they came to the realization that "some people might drive by and think we don't have any parents and kidnap us" so they decided to move behind the branches of the tree.

Larkin loved having grass to crawl around in.

 Steph starts a load of laundry in our mobile washing machine.

 We hit some pavement due to more private property signs. We were really fed up with the lack of East-West roads in northern Oklahoma and southeastern Colorado. Every road on the atlas or GPS had a gate and a ranch entrance. Whether they were state kept or not we couldn't tell.

Keeping busy in the car.

Bailey cut up a workbook page into the shape of a truck. We continue to be amazed by their creativity that manifests out of the boredom.

 A lava cone outside of Trinidad, Co.
Sorry about the dirty windshield. Unfortunately if we stopped whenever we wanted to take a picture of the beautiful scenery we would still be in Colorado! 

 Everyone is so excited to see big mountains!

San Isabel Reservoir ( I think??).
On our way out of Rye heading towards Bishops Castle and then up into the woods to camp in the National Forest.

 The somewhat ominous entrance to Bishop's Castle. Jim Bishop has spent the past 46 years working on this castle everyday. Even through the death of his 6 year old son who was killed in an accident on the site.

 Mr. Bishop is somewhere up there on the scaffolding working on a draw bridge tower that will span the mote that he has almost finished digging. We said hello and let the kids say hi and moved on into the main structure. He can be unpredictable.

 Some sweet scaffolding.

 The pictures speak for themselves mostly. He does all the intricate metal work himself.

 It's an amazing place and there are tons of videos on  youtube.

 If you're ever in south central Colorado, you must go.

 Incline Railway powered by a Bobcat.
 King Bailey.

 All built/welded by hand by Mr. Bishop alone! He won't even accept help from family or friends!

 And I can assure you that it does not meet any building code. Enter at your own risk.

I was truly amazed to be there! Jesse and Richard first visited a few years prior and told me how incredible it was. After watching videos on youtube about the castle I was speechless and knew that I too wanted to visit this place before I die.

 Though scary and lacking safety features, it is well built.

The flying bridge. It moves with the flexing of the towers and metal structure. I walked across last time I was out here. Not this time.

 The view down from the 112 steps that lead to the topmost tower.

 The surrounding countryside from the tower.

 Here you get an idea of the structure of the building.

 Jim Bishop in the upper left-hand corner. Hard at work at seven at night.

 We'd had a very long day with lots of rerouting and stopping. We stopped to shop and get ice. We were ready to stop and looked at a pay campground near the castle but there were lots of people and it cost $14 to stay. After spending a lot of money on a roof-top tent, I'm pretty determined not to pay for camping in order to recoup some of the cost of the tent. So we passed it up and headed further up into the hills where

 we were blessed with a perfect, ridge-top campsite. Alone and free we settled in for a great evening of cooking,

 hanging out by the fire

 and drying out our laundry.

 This was our first really cold night as we were camped at 9300 feet.

One of our favorite campsites. 

Bailey is fascinated with fire!!

In fact, we loved this campsite so much we decided to stay until 1pm the next day! That was a first. Normally we would be packed up and ready to leave by 8:30am.

One of the downsides of using the waxy sunscreen stick is that the dirt sticks to it.

 We took it slow in the morning, relaxing and eating a big breakfast. We hiked down the ridge some and really enjoyed the feeling of being at home back in Colorado.


Raewyn said...

Wonderful post guys! Loving the photos. The castle looks amazing. How on earth does he fund it and how is he allowed to build this without permits - esp when it is open for public. Over here he would've be shut down and demolished in a flash!!

Loved your campsite.
Such a wonderful educational family experience for you all.

Chad said...

The rancher that led you off of his property, how was he? Did he seem annoyed or was he cool about it?

stephanie teague said...

Well, we saw him coming and he was coming fast so we pretty much figured he had something to say to us. I had turned around at that point and stopped the car and rolled the windows down so he could see that we were a family. He was young and polite. Probably about our age. The guy with him said that they get a lot of the adventure motorcycle riders coming through. He said most were nice but some weren't so that's why he carried his trusty hunting rifle. He gave us a directions out and "let" us follow him out. -Jesse

stephanie teague said...

Raewyn, He has fought the government many times as they tried to shut him down. You don't pay to get in; it's all donation and there are signs everywhere to that effect. Still, it's pretty wild.