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Arriving at Winding River Resort

Updated: Jan 25, 2022

Summer vacation August 2021: Grand Lake Colorado

Tim getting us checked in at Winding River. They have an awesome gift shop!

This morning we left Doug and Stephanie with a working truck! We decided not to turn it off again between their place and Winding River, just in case. It was a surreal experience passing the Oakley Exit again thinking about how the day before we were so excited for the trip and discussing plans. Today we were white-knuckled and holding our breath hoping we wouldn’t stall out during a stop. But since we decided to leave the engine running we knew 99.9% chance we were going to be fine but there was still that trauma in the back of our minds realizing how badly yesterday could have gone.

We drove I-70 to Silverthorne and took the exit toward Kremmling to avoid the harrowing descent into Winter Park with a trailer. We hadn’t had this rig in the mountains yet and wanted to make it as easy on ourselves as possible. Thanks Julie Honsinger for a great route suggestion! We pulled into Winding River Resort in Grand Lake, Colorado at 3:00 pm - only a few hours later than we had originally planned.

We had a layover East of Denver scheduled for the first night. Tim and I looked at each other when we pulled in and put it in park and we just wanted to laugh and cry as we realized this. How in the world had we pulled this off. We immediately loved this resort. A beautiful shop/front desk with lots of touristy items for purchase was fun to browse. The front desk folks enjoyed listening to us recant our travel adventures and got us all checked in.

Bull moose grazing. You can see the fire-damaged trees in the background.

There was a massive forest fire that went through this area early in the year so most of the view from the ranch is unfortunately completely demolished forest from the fires. However, they had put us in a fabulous site with beautiful pines that had been miraculously saved from the fire. The horse pens were a great size,14x14 panels located right behind our trailer. The bath house is brand new since the last one was lost in the fire. It is very nice and clean. They also have a Laundromat in case we need it during our stay as well.

Once we pulled into our site, Tim went to work setting up the people part of camp and I set up the horse part. We weren’t very efficient and I, of course, wanted to poultice and put standing wraps on the horses so that took a hot minute as usual. I also struggled with how to organize the back of the trailer into a workable feed room. In the end however, we had an excellent set up. We didn’t forget anything critical but as we go throughout the week we plan to be adding to a “glitch list” for things that we might want for future trips.

We had planned to ride straight from camp today but we were too mentally and physically exhausted after getting here and setting up. We had a spaghetti dinner pre-made from home which was so nice to not have to cook anything our first night. We will remember that for next time as well! We are looking forward to our first ride tomorrow and exploring our surroundings further.


Quick Tips!

My absolute favorite campsite hack is a little silly but awesome! I used a velcro cord organizer and a carabiner to hang the hose on the side of the trailer - all nice and organized and off the ground! Super easy to use and put away and it makes me happy. :)

Another great thing was using our folding table in the horse area of the trailer to make it easier to get feed put together or dig through a med kit. We are renting a trailer from Winding River when we leave camp so we won’t need to move our rig until the day we head home. This allows us to utilize our space and spread things out!


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