How, asks the reader, is Geotripper going to connect those subjects into a single coherent blog post? I can't speak for "coherent", but I can do it the rest. Just bear with me!
It has a lot to do with the geological richness of Colorado. Things change quickly in the space of few miles as one wanders about the state, and wandering was what we were doing back in July. I called this off-and-on blog series about the trip "vagabonding" because we made a point of not planning our nightly stops more than a day or two in advance, and we had no particular deadlines or goals other than a desire to see Rocky Mountain National Park (which we did), and to take lots and lots of pictures.
In the last post, we had found the headwaters of the Colorado River, and were witness to the appalling destruction wrought by the bark beetles that have killed practically every tree across three million acres of Colorado. We more or less followed the Colorado River downstream, including a return to beautiful Glenwood Canyon, but when we reached Glenwood Springs, we turned south on Highway 82 towards Aspen, and then turned again onto Highway 133 traveling up the Crystal River towards McClure Pass. We stopped for lunch along the river for lunch, and I started snapping pictures of flowers (As usual, I don't know what they are. I thought lupine at first, but up close they don't look like it).