Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Summer Vacation 2012: Day 9

Last but not least: Day 9! This was the last day of our road trip, and our first day back in the heat. We woke up in Price, Utah (M on the map) and rolled out in our packed car. By day nine of a road trip, all of the wonderful, precise packing we did in order to fit our camping gear, food, clothes, and two people into a tiny Honda Fit went out the window. I gave up trying to dig out the proper bags to put things away and keeping all of the empty drink bottles in the front of the car until I could dispose of them at a gas station. I was sitting in the passenger seat, and I wanted my feet free! All the bags, atlases, brochures, receipts, shoes, and jackets were beginning to make me claustrophobic. The car was also beginning to develop that road trip "funk." If it was in my way, I threw it into the abyss of the backseat and I wouldn't see it again until we were back home in Mesa (P). The teacher in me gave way to the artist! 

Canyonlands was the perfect place to visit for the artistic mood. Every trip I go on, there is always a place left "unfinished." A place that I have a deep yearning to go back and explore. Last year, that place was Zion. This year, it was Canyonlands. Canyonlands is a really interesting park. It's very close to Arches, which is extremely crowded, yet there is almost no one there. It is 527 square miles in size (a little over half the size of the Grand Canyon and five times the size of Arches National Park) and feels empty. The park is divided into three sections, only one of which is accessible without any four wheel driving. This is the other reason I find it so intriguing. I feel like driving into one of the unpaved sections of the park would be like exploring a virtually unseen land. 

Click on the pictures to see at full size. 
We visited the Island in the Sky district, which is the only area with all paved roads. This area offered great views of the canyons.

I love this view. It's fascinating to see the various layers of the mesas and canyon.

This gives you a good idea of the size of the canyons. The haze is dust in the air, making it hard to see details at a distance.
A close up of some of the awesome rock formations in the canyon.
In this picture you can see some of the dirt roads down in the canyon. I totally want to go explore down there!

The clouds casting shadows.

The red sand makes this area look like Canyon de Chelly or Sedona.

Bill taking in the view.

Bill also took a shot of me taking in the view.

After spending the morning at Canyonlands, we started on the long drive home. We made it back to Mesa at about 2 in the morning. It was a long day! 

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