Friday - November 21, 2008

Today was another beautiful day with highs in the low 60’sF (15C) but it was hazy off in the distance.

We decided to visit Dead Horse State Park and Canyonlands National Park today and for a change I drove to give John a rest (I think he enjoyed being able to watch the scenery). Dead Horse State Park is a really nice park and the scenery was beautiful. At the Visitor Centre we walked a trail around the canyon rim and there were some awesome views into canyons.

Nice Rock Formations

Dead Horse Point is a peninsula connected to a large mesa by a narrow strip of land. At one time, in the late 1800’s, cowboys captured wild mustangs by driving them across the narrow neck of land onto the point, then closing them in by building a brush fence made of Junipers and Aspens behind them. They would then cull the horses and take the better ones. One time they forgot to take down the fence after the cull and the horses they didn’t want were trapped over the winter and died, they could see water 2000’ below but of course couldn’t get to it – hence the name Dead Horse Point. From the rim there was a panoramic view of the canyon country and the Colorado River.

View of Solar Evaporation Ponds Used for Mining Potash

More Rock Formations

View of Colorado River from Dead Horse Point

John By Juniper Tree Covered in Berries

We drove through the campground at Dead Horse Point and it looked really nice with very large, private sites and they all had electric. There was one large 5th wheel trailer in there and that was it, certainly not a busy time of year here!!

From there we drove to Island in the Sky in Canyonlands National Park. The “Island” gets it name from the fact that, with the exception of the narrow route across the Neck, the huge mesa is isolated from the canyons below by towering cliffs. At Grand View Point we could look out over Monument, White Basin and the White Rim. It was good for taking pictures here.

White Rim


More Neat Formations

From there we went to the Green River Overlook where the view included the White Rim, Green River and Orange Cliffs. Because it was getting late in the afternoon it was impossible to get good pictures at this stop.

We then stopped and hiked the Mesa Arch Trail to see Mesa Arch. It was about the same type of trail as we did yesterday to see the Window and Turret Arches, lots of stair up! When we got to the point where we could see the Arch I stopped as the trail turned a bit tricky and so John went ahead and I stayed and enjoyed the view from where I was. Fortunately, I didn’t have to stop and “retire” (see my English teacher daughter’s comment on yesterday blog) my shoe today.

Mesa Arch

Large Raven in Parking Area for Mesa Arch Trail

From there we went to the Upheaval Dome but it was another trail to get there and we wanted to be out of the park before dark, which happens around 5:15 p.m., so didn’t have the time to do it.

Tonight is another quiet evening, and I am getting tired so won’t post this until tomorrow.

And so ends another great gift of a day and we are looking forward to tomorrow and to see how the day unfolds.

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