Wednesday, September 25, 2013


The stunning Red Fleet State Park, near Vernal, Utah
This holiday has allowed Caroline and I to do and see some amazing things. Seeing Sequoia that are over 2000 years old was very cool, as was visiting Yellowstone where we saw Geysers and had a magical moment leaving the National Park. We saw some cars stopped by the side of the road, and we pulled over to see why. There was an enormous male elk in the trees by the side of the road. I was driving so Caroline quickly lowered her passenger window to take a snap when he bolted. We thought we'd scared him until we heard wolves howling in the background. The thrill of just hearing wolves was amazing and something we really weren't expecting.

Caroline touches a 150 million year old Stegosaurus leg bone
Well today things just carried on with amazing happenings. We stopped in the northern Utah town of Vernal overnight which is a gateway to the National Dinosaur Monument. This is a large area of land in southern Wyoming, northern Utah, and western Colorado where amazing dinosaur finds have been unearthed. The main place to go is the Dinosaur Quarry Exhibit Hall which is a building encompassing a massive archaeological site which holds masses of large dinosaur remains. As you walk around you are allowed to touch the dinosaur bones. This is just fantastic, touching the bones of something which lived about 150 million years ago. Just a short hop away, the local historic culture of the Fremont Indians is visible in Petroglyphs that date back 1000 years.

Quarry Exhibit Hall is built over the rock face that encases the dinosaur bones
1000 year old Fremont Indian Petroglyphs
From dinosaur land we headed east into Colorado and went further than we really wanted to which was my mistake as I was navigating. We stopped in a town called Craig (coincidentally, my nephew's name!) where a friendly waitress in a bar helped us to find our way again. We'd gone too far east, and added about 80 miles on to our journey today. Should we perhaps invest in a GPS? Yes, to the disbelief of some we are travelling around with no GPS in a foreign country, and have managed just over 2500 miles getting lost once, and even then we weren't that lost! In fact, getting lost allowed us a friendly chat and the road we took to get back on track was absolutely stunning cutting through the Colorado River valley east of Grand Junction. Our "mistake" turned into a blessing.
Sunset just north of Moab, Utah
The last part of the journey was back into Utah and into the town of Moab. Now Utah has some pretty strict drinking laws, so we were a little surprised to find a microbrewery in Moab, serving excellent beer, and decent food. I had a couple of Scorpion Pale Ales, and they tasted great with a decent strength. We felt a good beer to finish the first week was well deserved. The holiday so far has been unbelievable and tomorrow we head into the Arches National Park which is situated just 5 miles from where we're staying.

A great place for a deserved beer after a week of driving and experiencing some wonderful moments.

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