May 27 – Monticello, Utah

These are the trips I like – only 55 miles to the next campsite. As we had forgotten Memorial Day we couldn’t stay in a touristy town like Moab. You wouldn’t believe the amount of people who were coming in town and all the activities going on. Will want to return to Moab on an off-season time.

Driving south on 191 we came across Wilson Arch. Had to stop and take a picture and find out which relative had been involved. Probably not anyone close. Do you know how many Wilsons there are?

The stretch of highway we traveled was high desert and not too many mountains. Fairly flat and open spaces.

Mountain View RV Park is kind of a nice small campground. Only 30 sites with gravel roads and sites, great wifi and it is filled with people with ATV’s. I guess that’s what you do in the desert. Everyone seems to have one.

We are at an elevation of 7200 feet. Temp is 10 degrees cooler than Moab. Really nice!

Saturday started slow but we decided to see The Needles in Canyonlands National Park. Canyonlands is so huge (largest NP in Utah) that it is divided into 3 sections by the Colorado and Green Rivers. Shortest access to the Needles section was from our location here in Monticello and not Moab.

Before the Visitor’s Center was Newspaper Rock.

We did the visitors center and got our stamp for this location. We then drove around the park and did some “easy” hikes. Brenda’s knee is still hurting.

We saw the “Needles” which this section of the park is named after.

We hiked to the Roadside Ruins, then Cave Springs, and finally we did the Pothole Point trail. They were all on the easy level but exciting to be out in nature and enjoying the great scenery.

This was actually a Cowboy Camp.

We also drove to Elephant Hill Canyon on a dirt road and now I see why everyone has a Jeep or 4×4. The road got rough.

They even had an arch called Wooden Shoe.

This section of the Canyonlands NP was different and had numerous geologic formations.

No matter where we are, each park is impressive in its own way. Canyonlands is wild America.

Sunday all I can say is there is no LCMS church in town and so we smoked ribs (6 hours) and drank beer for the day. Ribs turned out great (fall off the bone).  Check the smoke line.

Monday we watched everyone loading their RV’s and heading home. We always enjoy watching people come and go (some are Newbies and not too sure what they are doing). We try to help when we can.

We are here one more day (never leave on the last day of a 3 day weekend) so we headed out to Natural Bridges National Monument. A monument is not on the same level as a National Park, in fact most of them have been established by POTUS (president of the United States) as part of a law with a stipulation called Antiquities Act of 1906, which means the president can preserve anything he deems important. Obama is doing that with Harriet Tubman’s house, The Pullman Company town, Cesar Chavez’s home, and others.

Natural Bridges wasn’t as inspiring (scenery) as other NP’s, but the three bridges were being preserved and gave us a chance to see them and appreciate what nature has the power to do. We hiked some of the trails to get a better look.

We saw the Owachomo (rock mound) Bridge (106’ H x 180’ span x 9’ thick)

And the Sipapu (place of emergence) Bridge (220’ H x 268’ span x 53’ thick)

And also the Kachina (rock art symbols) Bridge (210’ H x 204’ span x 44’ thick)

Did you know? Bridges are different than Arches as the bridge was formed from moving water running thru and under the rock, while Arches were formed from erosion and water seeping thru the rock.

Horse Collar Ruins was very interesting as there was ancient Puebloan’s home built into the rock. Unfortunately I did not have my zoom lens and wasn’t able to get any close ups. Look closely at the picture to see portion of walls.DSC_0056

Tuesday time to head to Colorado.

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