May 27, 2010

Travelogue Day 7

Utah - Colorado

After a wonderful, organic breakfast of blue corn pancakes in Bluff, UT, we headed down the road to visit one of Utah's most famous parks, Arches National Park. Again, the golden senior card let us pass through the gates free of charge, but of course we always spend money when we get inside these parks, so it's probably a really good deal for the parks to let us come in anytime we want to! We decided to rent an auto tour of the park for $5. We really enjoy doing this since it's like having a ranger along with you. Here's an overlook of the visitor's center (far left bottom of picture) as we are ascending into the amazing park. The snowy mountains you see in all of these photos are the La Sal Mountains (Salt Mountains) named by Spanish explorers.

This park has over 2000 sandstone arches and many other unusual rock formations. The first one we photographed was called "The Three Gossips" - and it really does look like three ladies having a good talk!

This one is called "Balanced Rock" - not such a clever name! It does have some amazing stats though. The rock that appears to be balancing is as tall as a 6 story building, and weighs 3,577 tons!The park was full of blooming plants as well. There are really strict rules about getting off the paths, so for the most part it was hard to take pictures, but we really liked this bunch of flowers with "Balanced Rock" behind it.

Most of this park is set up so that you hike back to see many of the arches. Since it was 94 degrees and blowing at about 40 miles per hour today, we took just one short jaunt to photograph "Delicate Arch". At one time it was called "Cowboy Chaps Arch", which we thought fit a little better.
This one was called "Cove Arch". I don't know what was up with our camera today, but this shot looks like a View-Master picture!

We were very glad to have seen this amazing place, and our last view as we exited the park was no disappointment either!
Tonight we are in Grand Junction, CO and for the next two days we'll be in Denver and Ft. Collins visiting family and celebrating our anniversary with them. Our plan is to have dinner with them all at the restaurant where DH and I met. (It was a blind date set up by friends, and they were all on the date with us too!) We're looking forward to ending our vacation on this glad note. I'll be back to blogging once we're home in Iowa.

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