When 3Up Adventures announced back in November that we were taking to the road, we could hardly have expected that we’d have three different travel vehicles within six months. There was no expiration date to our travels but we knew that we wanted to eventually settle in one place again—we just didn’t have any idea where that would be.

When Forrest and I left Moab about three weeks ago we checked out some of the more remote parts of Southwestern Utah. We were supposed to be staying at “lower” elevations and planned on going to Gateway, Colorado but at the junction of US 50 and CO 141, we were struck with mountain fever and rationalized that Ouray (and Silverton and Ridgway) was only a couple of hours out of our way. We’d been wanting to check out SW Colorado for a long time thinking it might be one of the places we’d be really happy.

We got to Ridgway and I fell in love. It reminded me of Switzerland. 14ers everywhere! Exploring! Hiking! Brewery! Distillery! Young outdoorsy people walking around! Friendly people!

Fast forward three days of us bumming around and we started shopping for property. (Because there’s no time like the present for decent prices, right?) Browsing Zillow semi-jokingly, I found 40 acres with mountain views for a what seemed to be a pretty good price. We called the listing agent and arranged to meet her, rationalizing it to ourselves as “just to check it out, probably wasting her time.” (This didn’t stop us from spending hours researching public records on the property.)

The next day, we walked around the property and realized that it didn’t just have a view, it had The Views. To the north, we could see Grand Mesa, to the northwest the West Elk Mountains peaked over a ridge, to our east was Cimmeron Ridge, and to the southeast and the south are the San Juan Mountains. As our tour of the property came to a close, we glanced at each other and took a deep breath, we wanted to put in an offer.

After the usual ups and downs of real estate offers, contracts, and closing, as of last Friday, it’s ours.

Buying more property this soon isn’t what we had in mind when we left Idaho but sometimes the unexpected things are the best!

(So yes, I was totally messing with you a little bit with the Where To Live post Friday.)

75.567 Acres

I am officially the (part) owner of 76 acres of beautiful Northern Idaho. Putting aside the little bit of panic instilled in me by watching my debt total jump a little bit, it is just too too wonderful. (And the debt thing? I know lots of people that have more student debt…and I have a house, a cabin, and LAND.)

I was grabbed by the obsessive research fairy yesterday night and spent hours feverishly researching “the Cooney group.” I’m beginning to believe that we have a very interesting and unique piece of land. As late as 1969, it’s ownership was labeled as “Cooney” in a sea of Day Mining, Inc. holdings. It is clearly recognizable as our property. (Our map obsession has lead to us being able to pick out groups of claims by their shape…this shape is ours.) As late as 2006, it is shown as a hole in Hecla’s subsurface rights empire (Hecla completed their purchase of the mineral rights approximately one month before our purchase so there will be no more picking out Fourth of July, Arlington, Nevada, and Mississippi on mining maps).

That somehow, among all the mining and the takeovers and the sale of claims somehow our four would remain the “Cooney group” is simply amazing to me. I became more than a little immersed in the history of the whole mining district last night. I feel there will be a kick ass coffee table book at the cabin someday.

Originally posted on the blog: Evergreen Rambles.