Saturday, May 9, 2015

Heading north

We had a wonderful week and a half in the Canyonlands/Arches/Moab area of Utah. The southern Needles section of Canyonlands and Arches are tied for our second favorite spot of the trip (after Bryce Canyon). Arches, like the other "big name" parks was a mob scene of tourists behaving badly, but like the others, it only takes walking a very short distance off the beaten path to have quiet, beautiful, desert scenes. We had some fantastic hikes, some short, some all day and fairly challenging, with scrambling over rocks. The most exciting moment for me was spotting mountain lion tracks! I showed my picture of them to a ranger, who confirmed them, and added that we had been in their known range, and that the tracks looked fresh - they had probably been made the night before. Another ranger said from the size of the tracks, it was probably a big male.

We got into Colorado National Monument yesterday evening. It was a spectacular steep drive up to a high overlook of the Colorado River valley just to get to the campground. Today we will drive the rest of the scenic route on our way towards Dinosaur National Monument tomorrow.
With a nickle and penny for scale.