After three attempts, we hiked to the top of nearby Cassidy Arch, named after a guy called Butch. First attempt, we missed the trailhead and did a lovely unintended hike in a slot canyon in Capital Wash.
The next day we found the trailhead, but misread a sign and bypassed the arch, nearly heading up and over a mountain we didn't intend to climb. Then we back-tracked, re-read the sign, and found the arch. (See the tiny people-specks above the arch?)
Next was our beloved Moab. I won't go into much detail because I already did that in this and this post, from previous trips. (We come here a lot.) We hiked out to the famous Delicate Arch, (a hike we haven't done in several years) to capture it at sunset. Husband's photos are always much better, but since he's off on his motorcycle right now and I'm too impatient to wait, you get to see mine.
This is a popular photo-op, so we weren't alone .....
Caught some great light with the setting sun.
The slope drops off into a deep chasm, and a few of the photographers almost gave me a heart attack as they crawled around on the steep rock to position their tripods. No doubt there have been casualties over the years.
It's a three mile round trip hike to and from the Delicate Arch and I started back ahead of Husband so as to not be caught in the dark before reaching the car. Half the population of Japan likes to frequent our National Parks, so I shadowed one of their little groups to make my way back because the trail isn't clearly marked. (Can't say much for the conversation, since I couldn't understand a word they said.) Husband was armed with a high-powered flashlight, so I figured he'd be okay, knowing how he tends to linger till the last minute. And linger he did.
I reached the parking lot just as the last of the daylight disappeared, and waited in the car. Nearly an hour later it was completely dark. A few specks of light (flashlights) were still coming off the hill in the distance where the trail was and I watched each one till it produced a hiker who wasn't him. Yeah, I was worried --- What would I do if he didn't return? We were miles from civilization. There was no cell service. The rangers were gone for the night. I don't know how to drive a motorhome. Etc.
Finally, after the once crowded parking lot was nearly empty, he trodded in. Of course he stayed too long before starting back and had to zigzag and backtrack his way in the dark across the rock, trying to follow the trail. He wasn't the last one off that trail that night, but almost.
This, I have learned, is the problem with being married to a landscape photographer. Their goal in life is capturing "good light" ... but it seems to always put us in darkness. Either we're chasing the sunrise which means getting up ridiculously early (in the dark) and driving miles to some remote location and waiting for the sun to arrive. Or timing our day around the sunset in another remote spot and then hiking back, yet again, in the dark. And most of the time, the sun is completely uncooperative by not waiting for us when we're running late, or hiding behind clouds with total disregard for the trouble we've gone through to be there.
Nevertheless, sometimes things work out .....
|(Above) Dead Horse Point. Breathtaking. This masterpiece, taken by Husband, must end up on a wall in my house.|
We headed south and spent a few nights exploring around Blanding, UT, (a semi-drab town) visiting ancient ruins. It was a little late in the day and the sun was setting when we did this hike, but look carefully. See the structures built on those ledges? Under each of those rounded formations in the center of the picture, are the Anasazi ruins.
We went back the next day so I could see it.
|Elsewhere, near Monticello, UT. So many ruins, if you know where to look.|
I learned later, we're not supposed to go inside the ruins. Oops.
Another hike produced this.
Appropriately named, "House on Fire". A new favorite.
Next we spent a couple of nights in the almost-non-town of Bluff (which, in comparison, made Blanding seem chic and interesting) where we happened upon our adorable niece and her husband. (Via Facebook posts ..... "Are you guys here too??"...) He knew the area well so we were treated to a guided tour of spectacular scenery, with some delightful company. (What? No pictures of us together? ....)
Next post: Arizona (Move over, Utah. You've got competition.)