<< Day 6: Salt Lake City | Day 8: Moab >>
Salt Lake City to Moab
Our RV park is near train tracks, and we can hear the train whistle late into the night. When I tried to point out a long train to Sebastian earlier in this trip, he informed me that he was no longer “a choo choo person.” (!) This made my heart pang a little, as Sebastian has been enamored with trains (especially Thomas the Tank Engine) for the first five years of his life. My little boy is growing, but perhaps he will find trains fascinating again—I remember counting the cars that went by my grandmother’s home as a child, and I still get a thrill out of seeing a super-long train chugging across the countryside.
This morning we headed off to Moab. We had blue skies above us, with scattered puffy clouds.
Ben has the oh-so-pleasant task of attaching, and later releasing, the sewer line from the RV when we camp at a place with hook-ups.
While Ben and I prepared the RV for our departure, Genevieve and Sebastian played a little basketball:
Heading south, we could see the large mounds of overburden from the Kennecott Copper Mine. The visit to the mine yesterday had been quite interesting. Benefit or blight? There are strong arguments on both sides.
Ben commented that the freeway was "very smooth."
We saw three helicopters in the distance, most likely doing maneuvers from the National Reserve base, Camp Williams.
We saw motorcyclists zooming by with no helmets. There are no helmet laws in Utah. While I always wear a helmet and leathers when I ride on the street, I remember the days of wind in my hair before the helmet laws were enacted in California.
We drove past long sections of new housing developments and shopping centers. As we traveled further away from Salt Lake City, we encountered short stretches of open space—fields with horses or cows.
We turned off to head southeast on Highway 6, glad to be leaving behind what I called “billboard row.”
We saw some giant wind turbines located in the first mountain pass.
Road construction was transforming the 2-lane road into 4 lanes. I always enjoy the 2-lane roads so much; they are more peaceful and serene to me.
We wound our way through some small hills:
The dark clouds were looming.
We eventually received our daily sprinkles of rain. As the downpour intensified, we saw this cowboy rushing to round up his herd of sheep.
This old building looks like it has a story to tell:
I loved the multi-layered rocks, exposing the earth’s history.
The terrain changes were fascinating—the green hills, desert hills, hills with trees, hills with no trees, white layered rock, red layered rock—such diversity, in a relatively small area!
We passed by a coal mine.
The road by the coal mine cut through a rocky area that looked like it might have some coal in it:
A house in the nearby coal mining town—it looks very similar to those in the coal mining town in Kentucky where I was born:
This house on a hill had a teepee in the yard:
In the town of Prince, we restocked some of our food at an Albertson’s grocery store. We did not have a store discount card, so the cashier (without us asking) applied her manager’s card to our purchase. This act of kindness saved us over $12.
While filling up with gas, we asked the cashier for directions to a park with a playground. She recommended Washington Park, which was perfect for our lunch stop.
The park also had a memorial for the local boys and men who died during World War I.
Prince was a quaint town, without any new subdivisions of tract homes. (We know because the town didn’t have clear signs directing us back to the main road, and we got lost through some residential areas.) Some of the older homes had been renovated:
And some still had their old-style charm:
We continued south and entered a wide desert valley:
The sky over the desert was a vivid blue, and the clouds looked like they were painted on:
The patches of rich green grass provided evidence of recent rain:
As we continued south toward Moab, the dark red rock formations were stunning.
The rocky shapes stimulated our imaginations. In the middle of this one, I saw a line of people huddled together:
We stopped briefly at the visitor’s center in Arches National Park to pick up Jr. Ranger booklets for the children.
The town of Moab:
Tonight we took a Sunset Safari with Hummer Tours. Steve was our wonderful guide, and we all had a blast! We went on a trail called “Hell’s Revenge.” There were many squeals and shrieks (and not all from the children!).
Ben took a lot of great photos:
The Hummer climbed up and down, over steep terrain. The rocks have a smooth surface and are called “slick rock”, named by early European settlers who tried to cross over the rocks in wagons with steel covered wheels. Luckily, our rubber tires had great traction. We started up our first hill climb:
We stopped at a lookout point:
This spot also had a few dinosaur tracks in the rock. Steve poured water into one of the prints so that it would be more visible.
The views during the ride were simply divine:
Climbing another hill:
The hill climbs always made the children laugh and laugh, especially when Steve pretended that the Hummer didn't quite have enough power to get to the top; he would put in the clutch to make us roll quickly backwards for ten feet or so. This never failed to produce loud screams!
This bowl in the rock is known as the “hot tub”—many jeeps attempt to go through and fail.
Our Hummer was too wide, but the children thought it would be fun to climb in and out. Climbing out was harder than they anticipated!
Sebastian celebrated with a handstand:
This descent was one of our favorites!
The quiet after the storm:
We stopped to watch the sun set.
Sebastian and Genevieve thought that the slick rock was fun to run around on and climb:
The path back:
The Hummer ride was the perfect way to end the day, and it was a fun introduction to Moab.
<< Day 6: Salt Lake City | Day 8: Moab >>
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