Tuesday, June 4, 2013

On to Utah


Boy, these blogs get ahead of you when you are busy travelling. It is about a month after we left Denver and there has been much to see and do. Southern Utah is a high plateau. Most of the time the altimeter reads well over 6,000 feet above sea level. 8,000 was not an uncommon reading. Several times we were over 9,000. The air is cool, clear and deficient in oxygen. I notice the last as we climb trails to explore the wonders of geology that the Lord has bestowed on the area over the last 300,000 years. The air quality makes for beautiful blue skies.

Leaving Denver we slugged our way up and over the Rockies. The last pass was 11,200 feet. The motor home made the last bit in third gear and was happy the air temperature was near 40 degrees. Otherwise we might have had a bit of an overheating problem. Everything was downhill from there, almost everything, there were numerous grades of 6% or more, both up and down. (Click to enlarge, back arrow to return.)

First look Distant Geology

The first looks that we had were of the distant geology. The haze is due to the large distances, maybe 8 to 10 miles away.

Colored EarthFluted Columns

As we drew closer, we could see the many colors in the soil. Much of the color comes from iron compounds although manganese, copper and other minerals add to the coloration.

We hiked one river bed away from the more common tourist route.

Tom Hiking Lou hiking

The spring flowers were in blossom. What a treat.

 Wild flower 1Wild flower 2

There were numerous petroglyphs. We found some where the park people had built board walks near but we also found some while hiking up a dry river bed. You have to be aware of the weather while hiking dry river beds. A rain storm miles away can turn the river into a raging torrent in a matter of minutes. Lives have been lost by careless hikers. Many places there is no high ground to get to as the walls of the canyon are narrow and steep.

petroglyph 1petroglyph 2

Our days were very eventful and tiring but we persevered. Smile There were so many scenes to absorb and photograph for later viewing. Someday, when we are old and gray, we will look and them and reminisce. Until then we enjoy sharing them with friends and family. We hope that you enjoy them. (I have several hundred more to choose from before getting to Trinity CA where we are now.)