It has been a few days since I have had a chance to update the blog. When we are camping, I try to stay as present and in the moment as possible. When a time presents itself for me to reflect upon our experiences, I take some quiet time and do just that. This morning I have been presented with just such an opportunity. The family is sleeping in, so I grabbed a chair , my laptop and set myself up on the bank of the crystal river here in Marble Colorado and reflected on our time in Rifle Gap. There is something about the bubbling and gurgling sounds of a river that brings me great peace.

For the past few days we camped in Rifle Gap State Park in Rifle Colorado.  This is a quiet and remote campground perched on a hill overlooking the Rifle Gap reservoir. The view from the campsite was spectacular. It only took a few hours to realize that this was going to be the perfect spot to unwind for a few days after the long and hectic lead up to this trip.

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There was not going to be a lot of hiking or sightseeing here.  We were just going to chill for a few days.  The temps were in the 90’s so we inflated a Kayak and a tube and headed to the beach. You can see by the pic of Colby in the tube that he is doing much better. He seems to be on the mend. Thank God for that because this boy was really sick.

So here we are in Rifle Colorado on the Fourth of July. What to do?  Grill meat and shoot guns of course!  I pulled a brisket from the fridge, seasoned it with a dry rub that I threw together and tossed it on the smoker.  We then grabbed Hunter’s .22 and headed to a public shooting range a few miles from the campground.  This was to be the first time either Colby or Hunter had shot a gun. After the obligatory safety talk, we set up some targets and had at it. Both boys were crack shots from the beginning.  Me on the other hand could not hit the broad side of a barn without my reading glasses. The sights were a complete blur to me.  Becoming an old fart sucks! Hunter and Colby were safe and responsible shooters and that is all I could have hoped for. The fact that they were good at it was only icing on the cake. They seemed to really enjoy it too.

After returning to camp I continued to smoke the brisket into the early evening  before preparing our Independence day feast.

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.To be honest the brisket had dried out a little and I was not pleased with the result, but the flavor was great and it did not stop anyone from scoffing it down.  As is typical in the Rockies a strong thunderstorm rolled in out of nowhere and provided a great fireworks show to compliment our Fourth of July meal. When the storm rolled in Colby was quietly meditating around the campfire.  The rain came down cold and fast but this little Buddha did not move. He sat that in trance for another 10 minutes as the cold rain pounded on his head. For those of you who know Colby, you know that he has exactly zero percent body fat.  His lips turn purple in our swimming pool when it is below 82 degrees.  The fact that he was not shivering was amazing. What happened next was even more amazing. After finishing his meditation, he walked into the RV from the cold rain and he was dry!  Hunter freaked out. He insisted that we had somehow passed Colby dry clothes through the window just to mess with him. He still believes that. I promise you we did not. It was a fourth of July miracle! Truly weird.

The following day we took a trip up the road to Rifle Falls State Park and did a small hike up to the falls.  We have seen a lot of waterfalls in our travels, but this one was unique because of the topography gave you great access to it.

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You could hike up  next to the falls and actually get into a small cavern just behind the falls. It was a really unique perspective. There were also some small caves that we explored up near the top of the falls. Very cool place.

If you ever find yourself in this part of the country I would suggest staying exactly where we did. It was certainly the most scenic campground in the area.  This is a place to unwind. If you want more activities, I  would suggest staying 20 miles east in Glenwood Springs. We will be making a stop there on our way down the Western Slope tomorrow.

Sorry for the slow updates. We are deep in the back country with no phone or internet service. I had to search for an hour in order to find an open wifi network at a local firehouse just to upload this entry. So Thanks to Marble Volunteer Fire Dept. for letting me borrow some bandwidth. Even if you did not know that I did it. lol

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