susanjoypaul wrote: I guess it just depends on who you happen to run into down there.
Just like anywhere else.
Although I will share a couple of other points that extend the incident beyond both Steve's and Keno's "one person" comments. I went back and checked my pics and I actually missed the date by three years
. It actually happened in October of 2002
. I guess time flies when you're having fun...
Anyway, this was mid-late October on a Saturday and anyone that's been there know's that's not a huge tourist time of the year around Crestone. It was early afternoon when we got to the store and it was relatively full. We reported what had happended to the woman behind the register, showed her were the gear was located on a map, and in mid discussion someone we now have named "Mountain Dan" started his rant about peak baggers. And we didn't look like weekend warriors; we were well dressed for the weather and had all the gear necessary for a winter outing. Of course none of that mattered to MD who continued on about his experiences with us peak baggers.
While nobody else there chose to jump on his bandwagon, neither did any of them refute what he had said, or suggest that he was a just a cratchety fart and should be ignored. In fact it seemed like what he said resonated with some of the eight or ten people there. There were a couple of smiles at out discomfort. And no one was very forthcoming about the gear/climber up on the mountain. It took a good bit of further questioning and prodding before enough of the story came out so we could understand. Altogether it was an uncomfortable afternoon and not the way I thought I'd be spending a big chunk of a far too infrequent climbing trip.
So Steve, if you're suggesting there are nice people in Crestone, I'm sure I could agree with that
. Fred Bauder seems to be one of them. Well spoken and reasonable and I wouldn't mind hiking with him some time. I'm sure there are others. But not everyone there welcomes visitors with open arms. And the landowners that control access to the Cottonwood/Spanish Creek Trailheads dont' seem to be to that open, do they? The western approaches to the Crestones are some of my favorite areas in the whole state and are off limits because they own the area at the trailhead and not much further, effectively cutting off access to whole drainages that they don't own. Not at all like Culebra where the landowner controls most of the mountain; more like someone down in Telluride. That's not much of a welcome to visitors. More of a leave us alone it seems to me.
Steve, I understand that you're involved in some way with negotiating for more access? I wish you well in that effort but I'm not holding my breath; even when paid off the hostage holders take their time in allowing resolution to happen.
In the community's defense I will say that 2002 was apparently a bad year for accidents on the western side of the Sangres and maybe their skin was worn a little thin as a result. I can understand the disruption and cost associated with multiple rescues and the effect it would have on a small town. It just seemed a little too easy for them to take the low road in explaining that to us.