The Vail valley has no commercial RV parks and very few boondocking options for something other than tent campers. I thought I might have to park 20 or 30 miles away until my brother figured out an absolutely ideal option—2 parking spaces in his small subdivision’s parking lot! The front side of the spaces didn’t look so hot (parked next to the dumpster), but the view from the back was pretty spectacular—a view of Beaver Creek mountain!
Best of all, we were only a few dozen steps from my brother’s townhouse, so not far to go to visit at all!
We were greeted by my cousin, J.R., and my brother’s girlfriend, Karen, and all went into Vail for lunch. We stopped at my brother’s store in the village, Christy Sports, for a few photos:
The next day, Millie got to go to her absolute favorite dog park in Edwards for a swim. Karen’s dog, Shine, came along to play as well, but Shine was more interested in swiping toys from the dumb retrievers as they brought them into shore than she was of actually swimming out to get them herself…pretty smart dog!
The View towed the Tracker up Loveland and Vail passes with no trouble at all. I didn’t set any speed records (only averaged about 40-45 mph on the steepest climbs), and decided to keep my A/C off during the climbs as well just in case.
So, with that test behind me, the new test was to take the Tracker out to some 4WD trails to start practicing with my brother’s expert assistance. I drove the first trail, an “Easy” trail up to Blue Lake west of Wolcott. The lake was beautiful and crystal clear, but we were mobbed by a few hundred blood-thirsty flies the minute we got out of the car! No luck paddling the Sea Eagle on this lake!
The next trail was a more challenging trail up to Boca Mountain—I let Randy drive that one while I hung on for dear life! Even though both trails started from the same place, the scenery was completely different. Boca Mountain was more arid and overlooked I-70.
I’m not sure if this little Tracker had ever spent any time on 4WD trails before, but it performed flawlessly on it’s first trip out—much more capable a vehicle off-road (with it’s true 4WD Low gearing), than it is on the highway!
Later in the week, we headed out to a very easy trail at Shrine Pass (between Vail Pass and Red Cliff). This was Millie’s first 4WD trip. She wasn’t too thrilled with all the bumps and bouncing, but did like getting to hike up to one of the last remaining snow drifts! I enjoyed spotting my first wild columbine flowers to photograph.