“I’m also looking for gems that the average reader might have missed.” ~ Terry Windling
Ouray, nestled between high, high peaks in the San Juan Mountains is called “Switzerland of America©.” The “alpine-like” village is a gem. Outstanding ice climbing and summer rock climbing and the healing hot springs are just a few reasons that this little town is so busy with tourist activity.
On Saturday morning the center of town was the starting place for the Imogene Pass half marathon. Fifteen hundred runners faced a challenging course that climbed from altitudes of 7,700 elevation to 13,000, over an unpaved mountain pass from Ouray to Telluride.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the relief and pride I felt as my saw my son cross the finish line after running seventeen grueling miles. It takes guts and grit to tackle it. He did well for himself, finishing 14th in his age group. But, he said many of his competitors were “seniors who looked older than the mountains and really put him and the younger people to shame.” I noticed that as I watched.
Ouray has so much going for it! Well cared for Victorian buildings, art galleries and quaint little shops, the Ouray Hot Springs, and charming bed and breakfasts, historic hotels.
It was second Saturday Art Walk, and we made the rounds. We stopped into Buckskin Booksellers. They have a large and outstanding collection of books of regional interest on Colorado, Western history and of geological subjects such as mineralogy, mining, fossils, rock hounding and the like.
I also noticed some outstanding art books scattered in different retail establishments throughout town. You could not help but notice them because some were like tomes – oversized, beautifully crafted, filled with magnificent images. I spied John Fielder’s Ranches of Colorado http://www.johnfielder.com and books on the Art of Howard Terpning.
Many notable movies were filmed in Ouray County. My son Marc’s interest in visiting Ouray was more than just to run in a footrace. As a filmmaker, he was interested in seeing the settings of these movies:
- Over the Top
- Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
- Sons of Katie Elder
- True Grit (the original version)
- Across the Wide Missouri
- A Ticket to Tomahawk
- The Unsinkable Molly Brown
Our visit to Ouray was a perfect stop along the way of a fun and fulfilling weekend. I’d like to return some day to further explore this area. It is located near where four states – Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah come together. There is a lot more to see such as Twin Peak Falls, and more to do than I ever realized. For more information, visit this website http://www.ouraycolorado.com/.
This blog brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard, author of Gift of a Lifetime:Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected and www.CornerstoneFulfillmentService.com.