Camping & Taking Photos in E. California and the SouthWest

travel

Heading “home”, Day 2

After a very long day driving (most of the time with no A/C), I finally made it to Salt Lake City. My motel was about 8 blocks from Temple Square, so it was an easy walk.

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Temple Square is quite impressive. There are many buildings including the Salt Lake Temple, the Tabernacle, Assembly Hall, Joseph Smith Memorial Building,  the Beehive House and the Lion House. The 35 acre garden is full of blooming flowers. I enjoyed watching  couples having wedding photos taken, and lots of people enjoying the sunshine. The temple itself is so tall I could barely get far enough away to photograph the whole structure. A reflecting pool in front of it adds to the feeling of serenity. There are several historic buildings, including  the Beehive House where Brigham Young lived between 1850 and 1856 when he was Territorial Governor of Utah and President of the Church of Latter Day Saints, and the Lion House next door where he moved his family in 1856.

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Assembly Hall
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Salt Lake Tabernacle
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The Lion House

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The Bee-Hive House

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Heading “Home”

It was hard to leave Seattle, my friends, my clients, my family. One of the last evenings in town, my friend Becky and I went to Anthony’s at Shilshole for happy hour. It was another gorgeous day. We enjoyed the views, the food and the drinks.

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My first stop on the way to Kanab was Baker City, OR. We’ve stopped there before, so I knew there was a good coffee shop (imperative when driving along cross-country). The town has a lot of charm and many historic buildings.

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I heard from several people about the Oregon Trail museum in Baker City, and arrived early enough to check it out. It is impressive. I’ve always been intrigued by the Oregon Trail and the people who traveled it. It’s hard to imagine walking all that way and suffering everything they did. They were a strong lot. I can’t imagine leaving everyone I knew and knowing that I’d never see them again.

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Final move & more travel

After returning from my travels to NH, CT and GA, I met Doug in Las Vegas and returned to Kanab for a couple of weeks. It was very hot, so we woke early, hiked, did some yard work and then retreated to work indoors. Our garden went wild while we were gone, so we returned to lots of flowers! The Mexican primrose and Honeysuckle had spread like wildfire and the birds were very happy to have us back. They went through birdseed like crazy.

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After a couple of weeks, we drove to Seattle for a 3 week visit. We connected with a lot of our friends and had a lot of fun. One of the highlights was seeing so many salmon in the locks! It’s been years since I’ve seen such a run!

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We emptied our Seattle storage locker and drove back to Kanab to unpack and get the house set up, then we left again.

I took a shuttle from St. George to the Las Vegas airport – it was a great way to get there – only $35 for a 2 hour ride! Of course, my flight was late, but I had a good book and the time went by pretty fast. Doug drove to Bishop, CA and started his yearly camping/hiking/climbing month.

I had a wonderful time in Seattle, staying with my friend Ann, seeing friends and clients. The weather was spectacular – one of the best Seattle summers ever. My friend Mary, from CT, came to Seattle to visit. WeI took the Clipper to Victoria for a couple of days. It was fun seeing Butchart Gardens, thoughtit was very crowded (a cruise ship was in town and I think everyone from the ship went to Butchart) and hot.

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We had a hilarious voyage on the Clipper – we met a group of people who get together several times a year for an adventure; we all talked and laughed the whole way…in fact, one lady near us came over and asked “are you going to laugh the whole way? If so I’m going to move” (and she did).

After visiting Butchart and walking around the tourist areas, we rented bikes and explored the “real” Victoria. We found a great little pub for beer and nachos (an old tradition of ours), a great diner where we had breakfast, and a super outdoor restaurant with the best fish & chips!

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We rode our bikes to Oak Bay – the water views were incredible:

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After our return from Victoria, we had great fun touring around Seattle – the weather was beautiful and so many flowers were in bloom. We went to the locks (Mary’s first time seeing it from land) and saw the Chinook (much larger than the silvers, shown above). The Chinook are so large they rarely jump. The fish ladder has holes at the bottom where the Chinook can swim in rather than jumping up the ladder.

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We went to the Chihuly Garden, recently opened at the Seattle Center. What an incredible exhibit. As we entered each room, we thought “this is the best” – but the next room was even better! I want to return when it gets dark earlier to see the exterior lit up.

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me and mare at chihuly

Showing Mary around allowed me to revisit my favorite Seattle places. It is such a beautiful city! I never imagined living anywhere else. I look forward to visiting often!


Down South

After having a wonderful time with Mary (it was over way too soon), I flew to Jacksonville, FL and then drove to McIntosh, GA. My sister, Holly, and her family have a vacation home on an island there. We spent 2 nights on the island, went out on the boat to a beach on another island, drove into “town” and cruised the few shops and stopped at the wine bar. It was wonderful and so relaxing! The marsh is so amazing – it’s always changing. The tides were extra high and extra low – it was incredible seeing the differences. One night the full moon was amazingly big…rising over and shining on the water.

McIntosh house

McIntosh house

A glimpse of the marsh

A glimpse of the marsh

Beautiful oaks with Spanish moss

Beautiful oaks with Spanish moss

Marsh grass

Marsh grass

They built this dock to the water!

They built this dock to the water!

Huge horseshoe crab

Huge horseshoe crab

Seabird party!

Seabird party!

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A Wonderful Reunion

Doug and I left New Hampshire on Tuesday, after the graduation. Doug flew back and I planned to take the train to Connecticut. The day before we left, a train was derailed and the route I was going to take was shut down! Fortunately, I got a ticket to fly to NYC about the same time Doug was scheduled to leave. When I got to the gate at the airport, I found out that my flight was delayed. After the second delay, I got on to another flight to a different airport in NYC, getting there about the same time as the first one was scheduled! I took a shuttle to Norwalk, CT where my friend, Mary, picked me up.

We met and worked together on the NOAA Ship Rainier in 1981-82. We became great friends the minute we met and had a blast on the ship and in port (Homer and Anchorage, AK; Seattle; Hilo and Kona, HI and Lahaina, Maui). We rode in small planes and helicopters; kayaks, canoes, small and large boats. We went dancing, biking, hiking, boating. We created a newsletter for the ship…I wrote and edited the paper; Mary did the artwork. It was a wonderful year. I still can’t believe that we hadn’t seen each other since I left the ship in 1982!!! We’ve kept in touch, but never gotten together. Well, that’s the end of that craziness! As soon as we saw each other, it felt like we’d been together all these years. We had tons to catch up on, but our friendship and closeness hadn’t changed a bit!

Mary is in the middle of remodeling her home in Rowayton, a beautiful community on the coast of Connecticut…I’m so lucky I got to see the near-completion of the first phase and hear about her plans for the next phase. Mary’s such a talented artist and decorator (she does graphic design and staging). And she looks the same…still petite, in great shape, beautiful and always so much fun!!!

We walked, talked, went to great spots to eat, toured around and even bowled, played tennis and danced using her Wii. What a blast! Can’t wait to have her come visit us in Kanab!

Some photos:

Mary

Mary

Rowayton beach

Rowayton beach

Pram on a float

Pram on a float

Mary's dog Lilly with her friends

 

Private beach

Private beach

Not a bad place to be a lifeguard!

Not a bad place to be a lifeguard!

Nice rocks

Nice rocks

Relaxing!

Relaxing!


Wave Again

Doug applied for another permit to visit the Wave and was the first one picked! We could not have asked for a better day…it was perfect. The 2-hour hike is so beautiful…and The Wave is beyond description.

This first photo was taken along the way…

This large camera was formerly owned by Edward Weston, a famous photographer in the early 20th century. The current owner lovingly restored the camera, which was painted in battleship grey during the war years. I would love to see the photos.


The Wave

Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Arizona/Utah

Ever since I first saw photos of The Wave, I’ve been wanting to see it. We’ve tried to get a permit for over 3 years. Only 20 people per day are allowed in, which is great because it’s quite a small area and everyone wants to take photos. There are two lotteries – one online and one in person at the Kanab BLM office. Finally we got a permit! It took about 2 hours to drive to the trailhead from Kanab, and then another 2+ hours to hike to The Wave. The hike itself was quite spectacular…past lots of beautifully colored rock formations. We spent 3-4 hours there before we headed back to the car. We got back just as it got dark. What a day and what a wonderful experience! The Wave is enchanting – with waves of textures and colors, plus lots of other interesting formations. We’re ready to go again!


White Pocket

Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Arizona/Utah

White Pocket is one of the most amazing places I’ve been to. To get there from Kanab, we had to drive about 40 miles to the House Rock Valley Road, another 20 miles down that dirt road, and then through deep sand another 20 miles to the trailhead. After all that driving, we like to take advantage of as much light as possible, so we plan to arrive in the afternoon, take photos, and then take more photos in the morning before we leave.

After taking photos until dark, we had dinner and got in the back of the truck to read and then sleep. It got so cold that the moisture on the windows inside the truck froze, but we stayed warm under our comforter and sleeping bags. It was too cold to get up for the sunrise though. As we were falling asleep, we heard coyotes howling nearby…I’ve missed that sound!

These photos are from our afternoon:


Yellow Rock

We drove about 20 miles along the Cottonwood (dirt) Road to get to the trail head. The roads and trails have been quite muddy after recent snow, so we took it slow but had no problems. We crossed the still icy stream, hiked past the entrance to Hackberry Canyon and then up a very steep slope to the Yellow Rock overlook. I was very tired and wanted to make sure I could get back down the steep trail, so I relaxed while Doug hiked up Yellow Rock. When we crossed the stream to return to our truck we got wet! A lot of the ice had melted since we crossed the first time…there weren’t as many places to step!

Above: Entrance to Hackberry Canyon

Yellow Rock (Doug is climbing the rock – he’s the small dark dot on the left, about 1/3 down
from the top)

Beautiful lichen…


Toadstools

Rimrock Canyon with it’s badlands and toadstool-shaped rocks lies about 40 miles from Kanab. We hiked about a mile into the canyon to see the first few toadstools. Then we drove up the Cottonwood Road aboout 3 miles and hiked another mile to the rim of the canyon. These rock formations are so cool; in all sizes and shapes. Made for a very fun day!