After all the rugged terrain from the last couple of days it was sort of a shock to pop out into a huge, flat valley south of Jefferson. There is all manner of geography here, and sometimes they run into each other. The flat land continued through Buena Vista (where I removed a layer) and gave way to another mountain pass on 50 west of Salida (where it was cold and wet and I wished for that layer again).
The lodging has been more expensive than I wanted, and I’ve been lugging my camping gear for 2,000 miles, so it was time to sleep under the stars. Freecampsites.net turned up Hartman Rocks recreation area, a BLM-managed area mostly for mountain bikers, but it seems pretty much anything goes. There are a few dozen primitive campsites here, and mine is on a ridge overlooking the valley to the east. I’m looking forward to the sunrise.