A Walk in the Woods Pt. 6 Philmont Memories

Saturday, July 3, 2010 – Zastrow to Abreu to Carson Meadows

Beautiful morning sky at Zastrow

Woke up uncomfortable many times during the night. Arose before 6 AM and took some nice sunrise pictures above the Zastrow staff cabin – afraid this might mean more rain for us today. Clothes that I washed yesterday still not dry because of all the moisture in the air. Weather is due to “Alex,” the tropical storm that was scheduled to hit Mexico and southern Texas a few days ago.

Saying goodbye to "Mama Bear" at Zastrow

The weather relented and favored us on the way to Abreu. Another staffed camp, Abreu was a stopover in the middle of the day. The program there involved homesteading; the staff here keeps livestock and has campers help with the chores.

Crossing a stream between Zastrow and Abreu

Nice short hike through trees and under cloud cover to Abreu. Boys enjoyed goat milking. Patrick and Rob walked the Enrique and Salvador, the donkeys who live here. Great porch here, complete with rocking chairs and swings. Looking forward to root beer after chores are done. Learned that Robert Fudge and Trip Corder are out here this summer and that a friend of Fudge’s works here at Abreu.

Patrick learns how to milk a goat at Abreu

Root bear was a nice treat. Surprisingly, the little tavern at Abreu sold everything from postcards to tent stakes to Toblerone chocolates. Chess and checkers were also available diversions.

I had taken several pictures by this point and decided to experiment with a feature on my camera that allowed me to see part of the previously-taken picture and align it with the next shot.

Tried “stitch assist” on the camera for the first time to try to capture the homestead at Abreu.

The homestead at Abreu

Met Ralph from Troop 1 out of Nashville on the porch at Zastrow last night. They are following the same trek – about an hour behind us.

After a few hours at Abreu we moved on to our destination for the evening, Carson Meadows.

Bear trap at Carson Meadows

Hike to Carson Meadows was steep but mercifully short. The porch here has a gorgeous view of the Tooth. The meadow for pitching tents at site #4 is good for drying our clothes from yesterday. Our site’s campfire area has decent shade courtesy of Ponderosa pines and piñons. Passed a bear trap close to our site – would be neat to see a bear if he were to be snared tonight while we are here. Jackie and the other kids would love these views.

The staff here reports that the bear hasn’t been seen in two days. I would really like to see the bear – from a distance. There are actually two bears here; a large, older black bear that hasn’t given the staff any problems. The other, a yearling, is more curious and is responsible for the scratched advisor. The staff has treed it once. They hope to catch, tag, and release it. We’re in the bear’s home, so he gets another chance.

Rocky day with the boys; not going to program tonight.

Altitude at Carson Meadows is 7,820 feet. We gain another 400 feet tomorrow at Aqua Fria (after a stop at Fish Camp).

Good “thorns and roses” tonight. Two compliments paid to Patrick for his going back to Abreu with Justin to retrieve his forgotten water bottle.

My Roses:
1) Watching the boys become more proficient at setting up and breaking down camp
2) Seeing the boys milk the goats
3) Learning that Dan plays guitar



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2 responses to “A Walk in the Woods Pt. 6 Philmont Memories

  1. Bill Ferguson

    When I was a scout, the scoutmaster used to keep a pistol in the event of dangerous wildlife. I only saw it once when he shot a snake that had gotten cozy between sleeping bags in a tent (after the human occupants had fled). Certainly you all had lock blade knives if nothing else?

    • ascottharrison

      Different era – no guns allowed unless you are pursuing shooting-related activities, and that is at a range with a rangemaster and safety officer. In a later post you can read about our encounter with a bear. There was a firearm involved, but it was in the hands of a game warden. (How’s that for a teaser?)

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