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Monday, July 28, 2008

Washington to Texas Day 3 - Rocks in Utah

We took a different route from Washington to Texas than we had when we brought Amy and the kids from Texas to Washington. We had a much more scenic route in mind. We pretty much sped through Idaho, missing our favorite sights from the 2006 trip, such as Shiprock mountain, and lots of wonderful rock formations heading up to Salt Lake City. If you would like to see some of the photos from that trip, you can at My Old Photographic Memories blog. This trip we wanted to see the Grand Canyon. So our route took a southward turn out of Salt Lake and we saw a whole different world.

The two photos below are side and front views of the same rock. We stopped rather suddenly when we came over the hill and saw the formation. The formation in the photo above is across the road from the formation below. We were literally surrounded by beauty. I really like the side view below; it reminds me of a staircase of stone. The front view will give you an idea of the size of the formation. It looked literally like someone sawed the side of the rock away. If it was done by men working on the highway, it seemed unnecessary, since it was so far from the road. But I don't know anything about road building, so I don't make judgments. But I can and do admire the beauty in the rock, and my hope it that it's a natural formation.

As we headed south, the rock got darker and richer in color. We wanted to go to Arches National Park (you know, the photos!) but we ran out of time. We had to get to the Grand Canyon in time to see it, and the trip from the North Rim to the South Rim was several hours' drive! So we drove and only stopped for quick pit-stops and a few photos.

The formations themselves also changed as we drove, with more formations of the type below. This looks more volcanic in nature to me than the previous rocks we saw.

And just before we hit Arizona, the landscape really changed! We felt as if we had left an enchanted valley. But we were very anxious to get to the South Rim by the "golden hour" and get some good photos (seeing both rims would not have worked, as we had to get to our cabin in the Kaibab National Forest in time to see the way.). And get good photos we did!

Well, I guess there will be a Day 3 1/2 to give the Grand Canyon its' due. We saw the canyon itself, some pretty cool wildlife (coyote, raven, moose), the Watchtower, and all-in-all had a very memorable visit. But I could not let our time in Utah get lost in the shuffle. Those rocks are worth seeing. If you ever get a chance, drive south from Salt Lake and enjoy. Don't forget to bring a camera!

More later,
Mike Z

8/17/08 PS - John Corney, one of my favorite photographer/bloggers, posted some photos of Arches National Park that I think are quite amazing! Please go visit (use the link to get to the right page) and check out the amazing rock formations!

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