errands in Leadville

It’s pretty unusual for me to make a trip into town during a stay on public lands; today was an exception.

checking the flat tire

I haven’t laid eyes on the right front tire since I picked up a bolt (?) in the tread and changed the tire in 106F heat.

I dropped the tire far enough to see it and located the offending bit of steel. There was enough of the hex-head exposed that I would wiggle/unscrew it over a few minutes with some vise grips. It’s shaped like a bolt except the tip is cut like a self-tapping screw. Has there every been a fastener better suited to puncture a tire?

I dropped off the tire at a Dependable Auto Repair since their signs advertised tire repair. From there I continued on to do the rest of the errands.

thrift store

I made a donation drop-off and picked up a replacement Brita pitcher ($1.07 with tax). Checkout took a while because I was behind an indecisive person with a ton of small doodads. Each item became an object of conversation as she talked to herself and the increasingly-frustrated checker about whether or not she really wanted each one.

Safeway grocery

This is the only major grocery in town. As with City Market, I relied on house brands and sales to minimize expenditure.

The wifi was fast enough to d/l podcasts and update apps while shopping, but that was the limit.

I put a turkey pot pie in the crock and actually remembered to turn it on this time.


I didn’t realize it, but a laundromat was right across the street. It also said SHOWERS. Hmmm.

I started all my clothes in a big front-loader ($7) and started reading up on the showers. It was one of those wonky mom-and-pops where all the signs have been manually edited many times because the information was not clear enough.

The shower situation was a bit weird. A bit like gym showers but with a coin-op mechanism near each. The boxes said

  • $8 showers
  • no quarters
  • please limit showers to 15 minutes

I can take a shower in 15 mins without issue so that didn’t bother me. The dollar-coin requirement was obnoxious because unless you have $8 exact you will end up with excess $1 coins that are only minimally useful.

As with other laundromat-based showers the water was hot enough but temperature swung regularly, probably as laundry machines drew on the hot water supply.

I got the shower basics accomplished and looked at my watch to make sure I wasn’t overstaying my 15mins; not even close.

The water shut off. What?

I dried off and looked at the coin-op again; sure enough, there was a DYMO label that said 8 MINUTE SHOWERS. Hmm. $8 is ok for a shower, but $1/minute is right at the edge of how much I’d ever want to pay. Also, why wouldn’t the sign say “please limit showers to 16 minutes”?

Whatever. I dried off and headed back out to the laundry area.

I put the laundry in the dryer and put in 4 quarters for 24 HOT minutes. Normally this would be enough in any low-humidity area (16% today) but the thicker items were still slightly damp. I’ll deal with that later.

tire pickup

The tire was repaired for $20. Again, right at the limit of what I’d want to pay for a patch.

post office

I swung by the USPS to pick up my General Delivery package (phone), which was mailed Friday the 6th by Priority Mail. Hadn’t arrived. I checked with the forwarder and USPS Denver has it, and projects delivery on Monday the 16th. 10 days for 2-3 business day service doesn’t seem like much of a priority.

new campsite

I found another spot to camp until at least the 16th. Usable verizon and tmo, much less traffic. The pot pie was emitting Eat Me Now aromas and I took the bait willingly.

I set out the damp clothing on creosote bushes to dry in the sun.

Tomorrow morning when it’s still chilly I’ll put the patched tire back on the front right and rotate that tire back to the spare position.


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