We took our friend, Kristy, to White Pocket and found that the pockets were full of water! It was such fun to see the area in such a new way, and really fun to take Kristy. We also went to the Coral Pink Sand Dunes ~ Kristy showed us a whole line of dinosaur tracks there…from at least 3 different kinds of dinosaurs. It’s such fun when she is in town, and especially great when her husband, Brian, gets to come.
Doug’s high school English teacher, Jerry, and his wife, Cathie came to visit. We had such a blast! Doug took them to Paria townsite, Buckskin Gulch and White Pocket. Then we all drove to Boulder, stopped for coffee at the Kiva Koffeehouse, dinner at Hell’s Backbone Grill and spent the night. The next day we drove to Capitol Reef. We hiked in Cohab Canyon and had a picnic lunch in Fruita. The leaves were beautiful and we had great weather. Crisp and cold, but sunny. After spending the night in Capitol Reef, they drove on to Scottsdale to visit their granddaughter and we drove back to Kanab. We sure hated to see them leave.
I work in real estate…I handle contract management and marketing for real estate agents. I know that no matter how qualified a buyer is, how great a house is, how professional an agent is and how thorough a loan broker is, things can go wrong. There are so many people involved and so many details, it’s amazing how many transactions close – on time.
Doug and I just went through our own closing…and it was tough. We bought a home in Kanab, Utah, a small town in SW Utah. We spent time here over the last 3 years and rented a home here for 3 months this winter. While we were renting, we decided that Kanab is a great place for our base. The vacation rental market here is robust and we plan to rent the home so we can still spend time in Seattle visiting friends, family and clients, and continue to explore and camp. Kanab is located in a premier spot – only 40 miles to Zion NP, Bryce Canyon NP; 80 miles to the Grand Canyon and Lake Powell. Loads of trails, buttes, slot canyons close to town.
Our first glitch came with the appraisal report. We expected it come in low, and it did. Almost nothing had sold in the area, particularly at our size and price. As we were about to attempt to re-negotiate our agreement, we found out that an all-cash Buyer had submitted a back-up offer. Yikes! We waited until that offer was in place, and then sent an addendum to the seller to lower the price. Our response was NO and NO (no change in price and no extensions.) Then, a week before closing we were informed that the lender was requiring a review appraisal (we thought the one we got was too low and missed an important comp)! Our broker ordered one on rush and it was done over the weekend. Our financing contingency deadline was Tuesday at 5pm. The lender got the appraisal report on Monday and didn’t give us an answer until 4:58 pm on Tuesday. Talk about stress! But that’s not all…when we got to signing, I noticed that the social security number on my documents was wrong!!! Thankfully, it was just on the loan docs and they hadn’t used the wrong one to qualify us. Two days later we were supposed to close. We got a call from the mortgage broker letting us know that the lender would not fund our loan until they had my IRS transcript, which they had been trying to get. OMG, I couldn’t believe they waited until the last minute to mention that…and immediately realized that they were probably using the wrong SSN, again. Next morning I got on the phone to the IRS and got them to fax the transcript to the title company. Title faxed it to the lender and it closed. I believe that the moral of this story is that 1) buyers need to immediately respond and send everything requested and then some, 2) buyers need to be proactive, 3) shit happens, 4) expect a glitch or two, and 5) it’s worth it.
We are thrilled to be in our new home. It’s small (1100 sq ft) and perfect for us. It has an incredible backyard. Since we moved in, the trees have gotten their leaves and the flowers have started to come out. Every day we have more and more…Mexican primrose, day lily, columbine, vinca, honeysuckle, Japanese bamboo, mallow, butterfly bushes and more that haven’t made their appearance yet. We love it. We have views of the mesas from the front and back. It was definitely worth it!
Here are some photos:
This is the view from our front deck
We love our backyard! We now have lots of birds eating from our feeders and bathing in the birdbath. I love waking to the sound of them chirping (and occasionally the crowing of the rooster down the street).
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.
E. of Kanab, UT
In 1951, Hollywood director William E. Wellman made a film for MGM called “Westward the Women,” about 140 mail-order brides making their way to ranchers in California.
Wellman had an entire Main Street built in Johnson Canyon outside of Kanab. The set had a saloon, a blacksmith shop, a doctor’s office, a general store and, of course, a hanging gallows.
The set was used in several more movies and then it was used for “Gunsmoke”.
Not all of the Gunsmoke episodes were filmed in Johnson Canyon, but a lot of them were.
Here are some photos of what’s left of “Dodge City”:
while I was taking photographs, I was visited by a half dozen horses who roam around Dodge City these days. They were very curious and friendly – let me pat them and looked hopefully at me…for an apple or treat?!
E. of Kanab, UT
Johnson Canyon, a few miles east of Kanab, offers breathtaking scenery as it passes the Vermillion, White, and Pink Cliffs of the Grand Staircase region. We drove to the Skutumpah Road intersection, then turned back to catch the light.
Red Rock Canyon
Despite the snow and underlying mud, we were able to drive down to the wash, then walk about a mile to the canyon entrance. It has several sections and was longer than we had expected…a nice surprise. With the right light, we could have some very nice photos!
We had another snow storm last night (Friday, 2/8) with more expected today and tomorrow. …Just when things were drying out! But it’s so beautiful and certainly nothing like what they are having in the NE.
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)