Sunday, May 23, 2010
The picture below is of Upheaval Crater. There are several theories as to how this crater got here. One is that millions of years ago a meteor crashed into the plateau.
This area is in the heart of the Colorado Plateau. The Green and Colorado rivers helped carve these canyons.
The picture below is of Mesa Arch. This was an easy one mile hike to see. It was worth the time to see this one accessible arch within the parks overlook areas.
See ya down the road !
We came to this park to, of course, see the Arches. We did not leave disappointed.
The picture below is of the windows arches. As you can see they look like windows........
Some hikes are longer than others to get to see the arches, but all are truly worth it!
The picture below is of Delicate arch. We hiked the day before to the arch. We forgot our camera so we had to go back the next day and go to the lower level to look up to get the picture of the arch. It was a great hike, difficult for me, but I am SO glad that I did it. Well worth it.
It can get very hot on some of the hikes, so make sure you carry lots of water with you and drink it often. It would not be fun to get heat stroke and miss out on your visit to the Arches.
The canyon is called "Black" because it is so deep (over 2500 feet in some areas) and it is so sheer and so narrow, very little sunlight can penetrate it.
By early 1900 the nearby Uncompahgre Valley needed river water for irrigation, so then began the idea of a tunnel goin 5.8 miles - called the Gunnison Diverson Tunnel - was begun. It still delivers water to this day for irrigation. It took five years to complete going under the mountains.
You can drive down the East Portal road, to the base where the Gunnison River is. When we were there the Crystal Dam was releasing water into the Gunnison and it was running very rapid. You can kayak down there with a permit as it is Class V rapids.
There are several overlooks with minor hikes to see the deep gorge.
See ya down the road !
Saturday, May 15, 2010
In the early 1880's settlers moved to the Capitol Reef Country. By 1920 work was hard but life was pretty good. No more than ten families at any given time lived there.
We stopped and got out several times just to look at the scale of the mountains compared to our truck. It was a sight to see - just look at the picture below.
Every where we turned the sight we saw was more awesome than the last. The colors were stupendous.
We took the truck down one of the roads into one of the washes to do a hike. We also saw some of the closed up uranium mines from previous mining throughout the years.
Friday, May 14, 2010
Millions of years of wind, and water erosion has carved the limestone into unusual and unique formations.
These formations consist of spires, fins, arches and mazes.
When you see a rock formation with a smaller OR larger rock on top of it, this is called a "hoodoo".
The rock formations here are beautiful and a true sight to see. There are many trails to hike and you leave your vehicle at the visitors center and ride the shuttle through the park. It has many stops to get off to go hike. There are also horseback rides in the park. We did it and it was lots of fun.
There is a very passive walk which is about one mile total which ends up at the waterfall that you see in the picture below.
Pipe Spring was discovered in 1858 by a missionary on an expedition to Hopi mesas. In the 1860's a mormon pioneer brought cattle to the area and a large cattle operation began. In 1872 a protective fort was built over the main spring they discovered.
Winsor Castle was so named because of the first cattle ranch manager whose last name was Winsor.
A corral with horses and Texas long horn cattle is also on the premises.
This was also the first original telegraph in the state of Arizona which was established in 1871.
Thursday, May 13, 2010
I think this little snow episode happened on the second day we were there. We really enjoyed our stay here. Before we went to Zion, we went to the Coral Pink Sand Dunes in Kanab Utah.
The beautiful salmon colored sand is so fine. It was a sunny day and we were able to walk lots of the dunes.
I am not much on the 'height' thingee and Jeff knows it, so as I get near the edge, I sorta start to panic but Jeff is in control and take care of me......... ha ha ha.........
This is such an unusual site and you have to hike about 1/2 mile from the road to see it.