Sunday, May 31, 2009

Day 11

Today we took a short drive west on Utah scenic highway 12 that connects highway 24 to US 89. Highway 12 transverses the Boulder Mountains almost at their very top of the ridge line providing fantastic views into the valleys on both sides of the mountain. We only drove to the 9600 summit on the eastern side so we did not experience the thrill of driving the ridge line this time. We will leave that for another trip when we do the whole loop tour of the Colorado Plateau.

In a few thousand feet we go from desert to forest

Looking back towards Capitol Reef from the Dixie Natural Forest

At 9600 feet we are approaching the tree line of Dixie National Forest.

From the summit of the Boulder Mountains we can see the mountains just east of the Comb Wash where we camped.

This completes the Colorado Plateau portion of our current trip. At day 11 we have toured about a third of northern Arizona / southern Utah scenic tour that we normally include in the loop.

At the juncture of highways 12 & 24 we will now make our way towards Layton, Utah for our grandson's high school graduation.

Dinner tonight was going to be pork chops, refried beans and rice but we stopped for lunch in Torrey. Raija had a large Ruben and Nancy & I a combination Mexican plate. Raija then decided that the pork chops will be for tomorrow night.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Day 10

Today we toured the Capitol Reef area.

Capitol Reef is a giant, sinuous wrinkle in the Earth’s crust that stretches for 100 miles across south-central Utah. It was created 65 million years ago by the same forces that later uplifted the Colorado Plateau.

It has been inhabited as early as 700 AD by the people of the Fremont culture who grew corn, beans and squash in addition to hunting and gathering food. They departed the area around 1250 AD left few traces other then images on the walls of the cliffs.

Explorers, Mormons pioneers and others came into the valley of the Fremont River in the late 1800s. By 1917 the tiny Mormon community of Fruita was bustling on the banks of the Fremont.

Capitol Reef National Monument was established in 1937. The families of Fruita gradually moved away but their orchids still exist today and visitors may pick the fruit when it ripens.

Dinner tonight is Tacos and refried black beans desert is homemade chocolate candy from the store across the highway from the RV Park.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Day 9

Wonderland RV Park - Torrey, Utah

Today we traveled from the Comb Wash Camp to Wonderland RV Park in Torrey, Utah.

We again are connected to the world via cell phone and internet.

We arrived around 13:30, set up camp, had lunch and I caught up on email and updated the travel blog while Raija did the laundry as we have full hook ups, water, electric and sewer.

As you can see from the picture looking forward from our campsite, we are about to have our usual evening thunderstorm. We just can't shake this weather low that refuses to move on. The campground host said it got down to 40 degrees F last night.

Tomorrow we tour Capitol Reef Natural Park and the surrounding area. We can even purchase a lunch from the Subway Shop across the street from the RV Park.

Tomorrow's pictures will demonstrate why this area is called Wonderland.

Tonight's Dinner: Tostadas & Navy Bean Soup, a travel day dinner.

Day 8

This morning we woke to clear skies so it was back to Natural Bridges for the tour that was rained out yesterday.

After touring Natural Bridges we stopped by 2 old Indian ruin sites dating back to around the time of Christ.

Each site had a 2 story tower. The communities form a chain and the towers provided communication from community to community. Some of the communities are on open high spots while others were cliff dwellings with the tower located on top of cliff.

Tonight’s Dinner: Lamp steak, Rice & Broccoli

Sipapu Natural Bridge

Kachina Natural Bride

Owachomo Natural Bridge

Indian Ruins near our Comb Wash Camp