Search

Category

Utah

2018-09-28 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 41 – Driving to Gallup, New Mexico…

We left Lake Powell and the Glen Canyon Dam and headed roughly Southeast across some of the most remote and desolate terrain I’ve ever seen.  This is mostly the land of the Navajo Nation…img_5963img_59611img_90631

We drove for miles and miles… and saw nothing but miles and miles…

At Kayenta, AZ, we stopped at a Burger King, home of a great exhibit telling the stories of members of the Navajo Nation who served in WWII, and, particularly, the story of the Code Talkers.

By the time we had finished looking at the exhibits other Airstreamers had also arrived…

img_90602img_9059

And then we left and drove to Gallup, NM.  Nothing too exciting.  In the evening we enjoyed a BBQ dinner provided by the RV park in their dining pavilion…

img_90651img_90661img_90671img_90681img_90691

We were visited by the representative of the ballooning folks to brief us on the coming days’ activities – we are going to be riding in hot air balloons!  We are scheduled for Sunday…

So, as is our tradition, on slow news days, we present some of our great grandchildren…  Maybe you’ve seen these before…

Roisin, age 5:

img_58691

Ian, age 4, and George, almost 3:

img_60551

Ian, Roisin, and Evelyn, age 6 months:

img_58681

Ian:

img_84591

Evelyn

img_89111

And, finally, Evelyn:

img_57751

And an enjoyable time was had by all…

2018-09-27 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 40 – Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

img_5897

We’ve had a busy few days… Today is a little more laid back…

The caravan broke into four groups to take a short trip to see Horseshoe Bend Slot Canyon, on the Navajo Nation Reservation… We were lucky to get the Noon time slot.  We were able to have a leisurely morning…

To get to the Slot canyon, we drove into Page, then rode in a truck outfitted with 15 seats… We were driven along the highway for three miles, then we rode over dirt and rock roads for another six miles…

img_8925img_8920img_8921img_8923img_8924

Once the truck parked, we walked the last 1/2 mile…

img_8926img_8928img_8929

Once we reached the entrance to the slot canyon our guide told us about it… Slot canyons are formed by erosion due to water and wind.  While they are beautiful, they are dangerous if thunderstorms are in the area.  They can fill with raging torrents of water within seconds…

img_8930

The canyon averages about six feet wide, with many places only about three feet wide.  It is mostly open to the sky, but, because of the narrow width of the canyon, sunlight sometimes does not reach in to the bottom of the canyon…

We walked from one end of the canyon to the other, then back again.  All along the way are spectacular views up, out, around, and through the sandstone walls.  These canyon walls are Navajo Sandstone, and they really are this color red…

img_8989img_8991img_5926img_5929img_8994img_5933img_9014img_9016img_5940img_5942img_9025img_5944img_9030img_9031img_9041

Our driver, and tour guide, was a Navajo women who grew up on this land.  She first saw this slot canyon when she was six years old and the sheep she was tending wandered into the area.  Her grandfather was named Manson, and it was he that traded the land named after their family to the Federal Government for the construction of the Glen Canyon Dam.  In exchange for his land, the Navajo Nation received some much coveted land in Utah.

(The Navajo Nation Reservation is one of the few reservations in the US that is actually on the ancestral land of these particular Indians.  They owe this to  the Spanish explorers, who controlled this entire area, in the 1600s and 1700s.  The Spanish explorers and the subsequent Spanish government kept meticulous records of who owned what.  When the Federal government wanted to put the Navajo Indians onto a reservation, the courts held that this was their ancestral land and that they could stay on it as their reservation… Zuni, Acoma, and Hopi Indians are in a similar situation…)

After our tour we returned to the Villa and had a relaxing evening.  Most Caravaners went out for one thing or another, so the entire campground was quiet…

img_5954img_5951

And an enjoyable time was had by all…

2018-09-26 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 39 – Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

img_5838

Today we took a boat ride around Lake Powell… We chose to sit on the upper deck in the sun all day…

img_8711

Lake Powell is a reservoir on the Colorado River, straddling the border between Utah and Arizona.  Most of Lake Powell, along with Rainbow Bridge National Monument, which we will be seeing today, is located in Utah.  It is a major vacation spot that around two million people visit every year.  It is the second largest man-made reservoir by maximum water capacity in the United States, behind Lake Mead, storing 24,322,000 acre feet of water when full.  However, due to high water withdrawals for human and agricultural consumption, and because of subsequent droughts in the area, Lake Powell is currently larger than Lake Mead in terms of volume of water currently held.  The lake was filled to capacity in the early 1980s and has never been completely full since then.  Today it is about 150′ below maximum capacity, and about 50′ below average levels…

Lake Powell was created by the flooding of Glen Canyon by the Glen Canyon Dam, which also led to the creation of Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.  The reservoir is named for explorer John Wesley Powell, a one-armed American Civil War veteran who, as you already know, explored the river via three wooden boats in 1869.

Lake Powell is over 186 miles long, and averages about 25 miles wide.  There are over 90 side canyons, making the shoreline longer than the entire west coast of the USA.   We will travel up the lake over 50 miles today, then we will go into one of the side canyons, dock, and walk/hike about one mile to see the Rainbow Bridge National Monument…

As I mentioned above, the lake is below its historic levels, as evidenced bu the white cliffs seen here.  This “bathtub ring” shows where the water level was in the early 1980s…

img_8724img_8736

Along the way we passed by several marinas, all packed with several millions of dollars of idle boats…

img_8713

Our destination is Rainbow Arch, a natural bridge (an arch formed by water flowing under it…).  This particular bridge is quite sacred to the Navajo people, and its preservation was a major concern during the construction of the Glen Canyon Dam and the resulting Lake Powell.  Even at “full pond”, as they call it, the Rainbow Bridge will remain untouched…

But Rainbow Bridge isn’t the only geologic wonder… We passed by what appear to be frozen, or “petrified” sand dunes.  These are solid rock…

img_8744img_8743

We passed by many buttes…

img_8750img_8758

While it was quite warm on the boat’s upper deck, the sky and water and rocks were beautiful…

img_8768img_8781img_5838img_8791

After traveling about 50 miles we turned into this small side canyon.  There are hundreds of these small side canyons along the lake’s 186 mile length, which makes it an ideal place for boating…

img_8792img_8797

The further we went up the canyon the narrower it became…

img_8811img_8818img_8835

While I’m sure our pilot knew where she was going, it was nice to see a sign that reassured us that we were in the right place…

img_8849img_8851

Narrower and narrower…

img_8857

Finally we spotted the dock…

img_8862

We docked, and set out on the 1 mile hike to the Rainbow Bridge…

img_5862

Finally it appeared…

img_5865img_5867

But we walked on, and even went behind it to see it from behind…

img_5866img_5870img_5874img_5875img_5876img_5878

Whether this was worth spending over five hours on the boat was a topic of discussion amongst the various caravaners…

We returned to the campground along the same route, so if you want to see what we saw, review the pictures above, backwards…

We had a lovely dinner at “Bonkers”, an unfortunately named restaurant in Page, with another caravan couple, then we returned to the campground for another Drivers Meeting…

img_5887

Apparently, our granddaughter, Evelyn, enjoyed her dinner today, as well…

img_8911

And an enjoyable time was had by all…

2018-09-25 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 38 – Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

img_8675

Another busy day on the caravan…

We began with a tour of the Glen Canyon Dam…

Glen Canyon Dam is a concrete arch-gravity dam on the Colorado River, near the town of Page.  The 710-foot high dam was built by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) from 1956 to 1966 and forms Lake Powell, one of the largest man-made reservoirs in the U.S. with a capacity of 27 million acre feet.  The dam is named for Glen Canyon, a series of deep sandstone gorges now flooded by the reservoir; Lake Powell is named for John Wesley Powell, who in 1869 led the first expedition to traverse the Colorado’s Grand Canyon by boat.  You will remember that we saw the Powell Museum in Green River, UT.

Because the dam site was in a remote, rugged area of the Colorado Plateau – more than 30 miles from the closest paved road, U.S. Route 89 – a new road had to be constructed, branching off from US 89 north of Flagstaff, Arizona, and running through the dam site to its terminus at Kanab, Utah.  Because of the isolated location, acquiring the land at the dam and reservoir sites was not particularly difficult, but there were a few disputes with ranchers and miners in the area (many of the Navajo Nation).  Much of the land acquired for the dam was through an exchange with the Navajo, in which the tribe ceded Manson Mesa south of the dam site for a similar-sized chunk of land near Aneth, Utah, which the Navajo had long coveted.  (Tomorrow we will meet descendants of the Navajo man named Manson.  Stay tuned…)

One of the first acts of construction was a suspension footbridge made of chicken wire and metal grates. At the time it was the only way to cross Glen Canyon.  Vehicles had to make a 225-mile journey in order to get from one side of the canyon to the other.  A road link was urgently needed in order to safely accommodate workers and heavy construction equipment.   A steel arch bridge was built; construction began in late 1956, reaching completion on August 11, 1957.  When finished, the steel arch Glen Canyon Bridge was itself a marvel of engineering: at 1,271 feet long and rising 700 feet above the river, it was the highest bridge of its kind in the United States and one of the highest in the world.  The bridge soon became a major tourist attraction.  The March 1959 issue of LIFE reported that “motorists [were] driving miles out of their way just to be thrilled by its dizzying height.”

During the construction of the Glen Canyon Bridge, the USBR also began planning a company town to house the workers.  This resulted in the town of Page, Arizona, named for former Reclamation Commissioner John C. Page.  By 1959, Page had a host of temporary buildings, electricity, and a small school serving workers’ children.  As the city grew, it gathered additional features, including numerous stores, a hospital, and even a jeweler. 

Prior to and during construction, three separate grants were issued by the National Park Service to document and recover artifacts of historical cultures along the river. These went to University of Utah historian C. Gregory Crampton and anthropologist Jesse Jennings, and to the Museum of Northern Arizona.  Crampton subsequently wrote several books and articles on his findings.

We walked atop the dam, viewing the bridge above and the river below…

img_8495

The visitors center perches atop the canyon rim above the dam…

img_8496

Lake Powell behind the dam…

img_5781img_8506

As the giant pipes carry water from the lake to the power plant at the bottom of the dam, the water forms such a turbulent force that the pipes vibrate and shake and would destroy anything rigid that seeks to contain them… Therefore, they covered the pipes with gravel, sand, and finally grass that would give pride to any golf course…

img_8517

From the bottom of the dam we looked up to see the visitors center…

img_8520img_8525

This is the water that seeps through the concrete that makes up the dam – about 1,600 gallons per minute…

img_8522

The power plant – 8 giant turbine generators providing electricity for the surrounding states…

img_8524

We can see Lake Powell stretching over 186 miles up-stream…

img_5803img_5804

Interesting facts:  See the tunnel entrance in the canyon walls beyond the power plant?

img_8526

The tunnel is two miles long and it extends from the power plant at the river to the rim of the canyon above.  It took two years to build, and it was necessary to get equipment to the dam foundations and to the power plant…

Stay tuned for more information… This afternoon we will travel through this tunnel…

It was an interesting tour, as all dam tours are…

We returned to the Villa in time to turn around and head out for our raft trip on the Colorado River.  We will be starting just below the dam and we will be going down the river about 16 miles to Lee Ferry.  This is a quiet stretch of the river.  Rapids in rivers such as the Colorado are rated from 1-10, with 10 being the biggest.  The “rapids” on this portion of the river are about .3!

We met at the Raft Tour office in Page.  After the Homeland Security check we boarded a bus (salvaged from LA Unified School District in 1959) to ride to the river.  Why a Homeland Security check?  We get to ride in our bus down the two mile long tunnel and park at the foot of the dam.  We were admonished not to take pictures in the tunnel, of the tunnel, or anywhere around the tunnel.  Nor were pictures allowed of the wharf at the foot of the dam.  The bus parked with its door directly adjacent to the ramp down to the dock.  We even had to wear hard hats!  Apparently people on the bridge overhead like to throw things off the bridge!  Who knew?  So we left the bus and boarded the rafts…

We were allowed to take pictures of the river and the bridge overhead…

img_8531img_8533img_8534img_5807

We boarded the rafts and away we went…

img_8537img_8542

The first thing we noticed were these holes in the canyon walls… They are “windows” into the tunnel.  (about 15 feet diameter…) We could follow them along the two miles, as they rose up to the canyon rim… They used these holes for ventilation, and to push the debris out, where it fell to the river below…

img_8545

All along the river we had fabulous views of the canyon walls.  They extend up above the river to a height of about 500 feet at the dam to over 1,000 feet at Lee Ferry.  In contrast, the rim of the Grand Canyon is about one mile, over 5,000 feet, above the river… We took literally hundreds of pictures.  I’ll only show a few…

img_8550img_5813img_8560img_8570img_8564

The “rapids”…

img_8572img_8577img_8576img_8591

Camping is allowed along the river, at about 10-12 sites.  Obviously, you must boat or kayak in, and pitch a tent… Restrooms are provided…

img_8595

Rocks…

img_8601img_8605We stopped at one point to stretch our legs and hike up a short distance to see some petroglyphs…

img_5824img_5822img_5821

We re-boarded the rafts and continued on our way…

img_8638img_5826img_8634

Our pilot, guide, and expert on all things Navajo…

img_8640img_8655img_8656img_8659

There is a fault that runs across the river – these rocks are virtually identical, on opposite sides of the river…

img_8663img_8661img_8665img_8690img_8693img_8697img_8675img_8680img_8687

We arrived at the end of the trip… Our school bus was waiting to take us back to the offices in Page…  The end of our trip, Lee Ferry, is a departure point for 4-7 day white-water rafting trips through the Grand Canyon and beyond… It sounded like fun!

We returned to the Villa quite exhausted.  However, we did have enough energy to spend a few happy hours chatting with another Airstream couple from North Carolina.

And an enjoyable time was had by all…

2018-09-24 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 37 – Driving to Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

img_57751

We had an uneventful drive from Grand Canyon, back to Jacob Lake, and on towards Lake Powell, just outside Page, AZ.

As we left the grand canyon National Park we had a few more glances of the canyon…

img_8461img_5703img_5704

As we neared the exit to the park we saw some wild turkeys…

img_5715img_5716img_5718

More Aspen showing their fall colors…

img_5724img_5710img_5726img_5731

We were soon down in the valley, traveling towards Vermilion Cliffs National Monument…

img_8462img_8465img_5736img_8464

We drove along the Vermilion Cliffs for quite a while.  We came by a sign that said, “Cliff Dwellers”, but all we saw was a motel – The Cliff Dweller Motel.  About one mile further we stopped at a curious sight:

img_8473img_8470img_8475img_5741img_5740img_8466img_8478img_8479img_8482img_8484

There was no information on just what we were seeing here, but it was interesting, authentic or not…

Moving on…

We stopped to take pictures at Navajo Bridge – The Colorado River, again…

img_5746img_5751

Then we passed through Page, AZ, and we drove over the Glen Canyon Bridge.  We will be back here tomorrow to tour the dam…

We caught a few glimpses of Lake Powell as we arrived at the RV Park…

img_5766img_5767img_5771

We checked into the campground and we parked with the other Airstreamers…

This evening we enjoyed a BBQ dinner with the rest of the gang at the campground picnic area…

img_5774img_5772

And an enjoyable time was had by all…

2018-09-20 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 33 – The Arizona Strip

2018-09-19 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 32 – Zion National Park adjacent

Slow, quiet day today.  We need one of these every now and then…

We slept in, caught up on the blog, and read the newspaper; we walked around a bit…

img_8075

We did walk across the street to the Pipe Springs National Monument… It is an historic site documenting the life and times of the Mormons in this area.  The irony is that these 40 acres are in the middle of the Kaibab Paiute Reservation…

The Indians, of course, have been in this area forever.

The water of Pipe Spring has made it possible for plants, animals, and people to live in this dry desert region.  Ancestral Puebloans and Kaibab Paiute Indians gathered grass seeds, hunted animals, and raised crops near the springs for at least 1,000 years.  The land at that time was rich is grasses, not desert sand as it is today…

In the 1860s Mormon pioneers from St. George, Utah, led by James M. Whitmore brought cattle to the area, and a large cattle ranching operation was established.  In 1866 the Apache, Navajo and Paiute tribes of the region joined the Utes for the Black Hawk War, and they raided Pipe Spring and killed Mr. Whitmore and his ranch foreman.  The  ranch was later purchased by Brigham Young for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church), and a fort was built over the top of Pipe Spring.  The LDS Bishop of nearby Grafton, Utah, Anson Perry Winsor, was hired to operate the ranch and maintain the fort, soon called “Winsor Castle”. This isolated outpost served as a way station for people traveling across the Arizona Strip, that part of Arizona separated from the rest of the state by the Grand Canyon.

The main function of the ranch was to accept tithes from the local Mormons, in the form of cows, chickens, etc.  The ranch fed the animals, and milked the cows and made cheese, and shipped it all off on weekly trips to St. George, Utah.

The Pipe Spring area also served as a refuge for polygamist wives during the 1880s and 1890s. The LDS Church lost ownership of the property through penalties involved in the federal Edmunds-Tucker (Anti-Polygamy) Act of 1887.

In the mean time, overgrazing from as many as 100,000 cattle decimated the grasslands; the topsoil soon blew away, and the land was left with the desert sand and sagebrush we see today.  There are attempts in the area, through better grazing practices, to bring back the grasslands.

As the Mormons took over the ranch lands, the local Indians were deprived of their main water source, and times were hard on the Paiute.  However, they continued to live in the area and by 1907 the Kaibab Paiute Indian Reservation was established, surrounding the privately owned Pipe Spring ranch. In 1923, the Pipe Spring ranch was purchased and set aside as a national monument to be a memorial to western pioneer life.

The Winsor Castle has been restored, as well as several smaller cabins.  The tours are very informative, and “living history” is on view in the form of a lady demonstrating the use of a spinning wheel, and a blacksmith using a primitive forge.

This is Winsor Castle… We were met at the entrance by the NPS tour guide…

img_8089img_8088img_8079

The interior of the castle are typical of a well-made outpost such as this…

img_5514img_8093img_8094img_8096img_8097

This is the entrance to the Spring Room.  The spring water ran through here, keeping the room at about 55 degrees (perfect for wine, but these were Mormons living here…).

img_8098

We saw some of the out-buildings and cabins for visitors… Interesting earthen roof…

img_8083img_8086img_8087img_8084

We watched the spinning wheel lady doing her thing…

img_5505img_5504

The view of the area known as the Arizona Strip… More on this tomorrow…

img_5501

After a few hours we walked back to the RV Park and relaxed and did laundry…

We drove to Kanab for dinner at a very nice, and very busy, French Restaurant.  It has only been open for 6 weeks.  We wished we could have spoken with the proprietor and learn more, but as I said, it was packed – on a Wednesday evening…!

img_8108img_8105img_8101

And an enjoyable time was had by all…

2018-09-18 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 31 – Zion National Park

Today we explored Zion National Park…

img_5496

Yes, more rocks… But different rocks, and different colored rocks…

Zion National Park is an national park located in Southwestern Utah near the city of Springdale.  A prominent feature of the 229-square-mile park is Zion Canyon, which stretches 15 miles long and spans up to half a mile deep.  It cuts through the reddish and tan-colored Navajo Sandstone by the North Fork of the Virgin River.  The lowest point in the park is 3,666 ft at Coalpits Wash and the highest peak is 8,726 ft at Horse Ranch Mountain.  Located at the junction of the Colorado Plateau, Great Basin, and Mojave Desert regions, the park has a unique geography and a variety of life zones that allow for unusual plant and animal diversity.

Zion National Park includes mountains, canyons, buttes, mesas, monoliths, rivers, slot canyons, and natural arches.  Human habitation of the area started about 8,000 years ago with small family groups of Native Americans;  however, these Indians moved away by 1300 and were replaced by other Southern Paiute subtribes.  Mormons came into the area in 1858 and settled there in the early 1860s.  In 1909, President William Howard Taft named the area Mukuntuweap National Monument in order to protect the canyon.  In 1918, the acting director of the newly created National Park Service, Horace Albright, drafted a proposal to enlarge the existing monument and change the park’s name to Zion National Monument, a name used by the Mormons.  According to historian Hal Rothman: “The name change played to a prevalent bias of the time.  Many believed that Spanish and Indian names would deter visitors who, if they could not pronounce the name of a place, might not bother to visit it.  The new name, Zion, had greater appeal to an ethnocentric audience.”  On November 20, 1919, the United States Congress established the monument as Zion National Park, and it was signed by President Woodrow Wilson.  The Kolob section was proclaimed a separate Zion National Monument in 1937, but was incorporated into the park in 1956.

We left the RV park at just before 6:00 am, Utah time… Wow! It is really dark out here!

Light finally came just as we arrived at Zion, just after 7:00 am.

The entrance station was still closed.  We entered the tunnel (1.1 mile long, took 3 years to complete in the 1930s…) and emerged to the sun rising over the valley below…

img_5413

Maybe I should have cleaned my windshield…

img_5415img_5418img_5421img_5422img_5424

As we drove through the almost deserted park we recalled that we had been told that Zion is the 3rd most visited national park in the USA, yet it is one of the smaller parks.  We were arriving early precisely to avoid these expected crowds.

As we drove to the visitor center we found many interesting sights as the rising sun began to hit the higher peaks…

img_8018img_8019img_5429img_8021img_8023img_8025img_8026img_8027

We arrived at the visitors center (which was not yet open) and parked.  We then walked the Pa’rus Trail, along the Virgin River for about 1 1/2 miles…

img_8029img_5431

Lynda went off-road to get a picture of the rapids…

img_8031img_5433

The sun continued to reveal move sights…

img_8032img_8033img_5434img_8034img_5435img_8035img_8036

We arrived at Canyon Junction, where we caught the shuttle to the Lodge…

img_8037img_5438

We had a nice late breakfast in the second floor dining room, then set out to walk the Lower Emerald Pool Trail… Only one mile, round trip…

img_8039img_5439img_8040img_8042img_5440img_5441img_8043img_8044img_8046

Finally we arrived at the “waterfall”… More of a “wet wall”…

img_8047img_8048

The pool was a little bit emerald…

img_8049img_8050

Now we see falling water…

img_5445img_8052img_5447img_8055img_5449

Falling into the Emerald Pool…

img_5446img_5448img_5451img_5454

We back-tracked to the lodge and caught the shuttle to Temple of Sinawava… They tried to explain which rocks looked like a temple, but I didn’t see it…

img_5458

We are following the Virgin River, once again, about two miles round trip.  At the top of the canyon is “The Narrows”.  In the mean time, we see the flora and fauna…

img_5459img_8058img_5460img_8060img_8061img_8062img_8063img_5461img_8064img_8066img_8067img_5465img_5466img_5467

If you squint, and imagine it 100 times as big, it almost looks like a bear… Lynda says she wants to see a bear…

img_8068

Finally we reach the end of the trail.  No, this is not a throng of Mormons being baptized… This is where “The Narrows” begins.  To see the narrows up close, where the canyon walls are only 20′ apart, you need to hike upstream through the water for about a mile… We didn’t…

img_5471img_8069img_8070

We were not about to walk in the river, so we returned along the path, seeing the canyon from the other direction…

img_5474img_8072

At the trail head we caught the shuttle back to the visitors center, and thus to the Big Red Truck.  As we headed out of the park we saw the sights that we missed by arriving when it was still dark…

img_5475img_5476img_5479img_5480img_5481img_5482img_5483 We emerged from the tunnel… and we were on our way…

img_5484img_5488img_5493

We returned to Kanab, where we enjoyed a late lunch at the Wild Thyme Cafe.  We returned to The Villa, where the AC was running strong (it is 93 degrees today…), took a nap, and had Happy Hours…

And an enjoyable time was had by all…

2018-09-17 – WBCCI 2018 Southwest Adventure Caravan – Day 30 – Traveling to Fredonia, AZ, near Zion National Park

Today we traveled to Zion National Park.  Except, not exactly… We are camping 13 miles outside Fredonia, AZ, at the Kaibab Paiute Band Tribal RV Park.  The RV park is across the street from the Pipe Springs National Monument, and is about 50 miles from Zion…

I took this picture because… Not Rocks!

img_5383

It was an easy drive.  After about 1 1/2 hours we arrived at the town of Kanab, UT, a nice little town…

We stopped for lunch at the Rocking V Cafe… Interesting place in this very remote town…

img_8011img_5385

Other Airstreamers were in town, too, having lunch, shopping for groceries…

img_8013

We also shopped for groceries – finally found half-&-half.  The last four grocery stores didn’t have any… What’s up with Southern Utah and their lack of half-&-half?

As we left the grocery store and headed to the RV park, we noticed a strange thing:  It is 1:34 pm, and we will arrive at our destination, 20 miles away, at 1:06 pm…

img_8014

Obviously we are in Utah, and our destination is in Arizona.  They are in the same time zone, but Arizona does not believe in Daylight Saving Time…  However, as we approached the RV park, rather than changing the actual time to Arizona time, it changed the destination time to Utah time!  Apparently the RV Park is quite close to cellular towers in Utah.  Our Apple devices and our computer similarly kept switching back and forth such that we never able to know what time it was… To avoid the confusion we set a real clock on Utah time, and the Caravan all agreed that we would operate on Utah time… Of course, Zion is on Utah time…

As we approached the RV park, this was the landscape surrounding us… Arizona looks a lot like Wyoming around here…

img_8015

Zion National Park is an national park located in Southwestern Utah near the city of Springdale.  A prominent feature of the 229-square-mile park is Zion Canyon, which stretches 15 miles long and spans up to half a mile deep.  It cuts through the reddish and tan-colored Navajo Sandstone by the North Fork of the Virgin River.  The lowest point in the park is 3,666 ft at Coalpits Wash and the highest peak is 8,726 ft at Horse Ranch Mountain.  Located at the junction of the Colorado Plateau, Great Basin, and Mojave Desert regions, the park has a unique geography and a variety of life zones that allow for unusual plant and animal diversity.

Zion National Park includes mountains, canyons, buttes, mesas, monoliths, rivers, slot canyons, and natural arches.  Human habitation of the area started about 8,000 years ago with small family groups of Native Americans;  however, these Indians moved away by 1300 and were replaced by other Southern Paiute subtribes.  Mormons came into the area in 1858 and settled there in the early 1860s.  In 1909, President William Howard Taft named the area Mukuntuweap National Monument in order to protect the canyon.  In 1918, the acting director of the newly created National Park Service, Horace Albright, drafted a proposal to enlarge the existing monument and change the park’s name to Zion National Monument, a name used by the Mormons.  According to historian Hal Rothman: “The name change played to a prevalent bias of the time.  Many believed that Spanish and Indian names would deter visitors who, if they could not pronounce the name of a place, might not bother to visit it.  The new name, Zion, had greater appeal to an ethnocentric audience.”  On November 20, 1919, the United States Congress established the monument as Zion National Park, and it was signed by President Woodrow Wilson.  The Kolob section was proclaimed a separate Zion National Monument in 1937, but was incorporated into the park in 1956.  

We parked The Villa and set up camp… As did all the others…

img_5389img_8016

As we settled in at the RV park we learned that one of the Caravaner couples, who live in coastal North Carolina, had learned that their property (not their house) had sustained damage due to debris and flooding from Hurricane Florence, so they decided to leave the caravan and return home… We held an impromptu gathering to wish them well…

img_5390img_5393img_5391

After the gathering, as we headed back to The Villa.  The sunset was striking…

img_5407

 

Another momentous event occurred 39 years ago today … Our daughter, Erin, was born… She celebrated today by letting her not-quite-three-year-old capture her on film:

img_8073

I think he has caught her essence…

 

And an enjoyable time was had by all…

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑