08 January 2012

Leaving the San Juan River

Choosing Friday as a day to play, we forwent fishing.  (I can only be  cold for so long, and then, I just  can't.)  We checked out of Ayala's, visited Float and Fish for some goodies, and headed on our very first Geocache. While we didn't take anything, we did leave something a fly fisher would enjoy.  Had we found this cache the previous day, located at the Cottonwood Campground between Campground Run and Cottonwood Flats in the Baitwater section of the San Juan, we would have taken the Hot Hands Handwarmers!

I wanted to see Shiprock, so following the Reader's Digest The Most Scenic Drives in America, we went west and south through Farmington, viewed Shiprock, headed north to Colorado, visiting The San Juan Angler in Durango, drove east through Pagosa Springs and back down to Chama, New Mexico.  We really enjoyed our trip through the snow-laden mountains heading through Taos via a 10,500 altitude climb around Enchanted Circle, and reaching our destination, Eagle Nest Lake. 

Heading out of town, we visited Dos Amigos Anglers Fly Shop and met Wayne Thurber, a Texan from McKinney, who is now one of the two full-time partners.  We really enjoyed the shop, and I bought a 1# fly line for my future rod.  We saw the ice fishers on Eagle Nest Lake, saw the Cimarron River, frozen for most of the public access through Cimarron Canyon State Park and Philmont Scout Ranch, and decided that this is a "must" on our upcoming Summer 2012 Rocky Mountain Tour.  We stopped in Clayton, New Mexico and ate at the historic, 100 year plus old Eklund Hotel where they were finishing the celebration of New Mexico's Centennial.  We pushed hard and arrived home at midnight of this day.  Unfortunately, at 3:00 a.m., we learned that the Eklund's cuisine did not agree with us.  We rested, relaxed, and recooperated, and I prepared to return to work on Monday.  The San Juan River trip began the 2012 fishing year excellently, oh yeah!

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