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  • Day14

    Day 14 - US Highway 191 to Arches NP

    May 5, 2019 in the United States ⋅ 🌙 19 °C

    Woke up to glorious sunshine. After all the usual requirements taken care of we headed north on US Highway 191.

    Just north of Monument Valley we stopped for the most iconic of photos looking back. We hopped in & out of the road, traffic permitting. We took photos in all different permutations & I ended up taking some for a Canadian couple with a posh camera.

    On we headed to the little town of Bluff, where stumbled across Fort Bluff. It was advertised as free, so we stopped. Upon entering the grounds of the fort we were accosted by A couple in old fashioned clothing. They invited us to watch a 14 minute video relating to the history of the Fort, which we accepted & watched in a church.....of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Another fascinating documentary about the plight of the Hole-In-The-Rock Pioneers who trail blazed a route from Escalante to Bluff.

    The Fort Bluff grounds contained various mock-ups of the huts they were living in. There are numerous original artefacts, wagons etc. Jackie declined the opportunity to dress up, but I enjoyed it so I put a donation in the box. Jackie accused me of being tight, but for my generous donation, Kelly & Carly (who had volunteered to work there for a year) posed for a photo with me.

    We continued back on the same road, through Blanding (that lived up to it’s name), Monticello, then into Moab. The scenery had been quite diverse as was the weather, we even had a drop of rain. I attempted a couple of panoramic photos whilst driving along, but I don’t recommend it.

    In Moab we stopped at a supermarket to stock up on a few provisions, beer mainly (wine & spirits are not sold on a Sunday). The plan was to camp in Arches National Park if there was any room available. We returned to the car park to encounter another miserable RVer, then sat in our RV to catch up on ‘social media’.

    We arrived at Arches National Park around 2.00pm & presented my NP Pass. The ranger asked for ID & it was at this point I realised we had mislaid my UK driving licence. We enquired about the possibility of camping in the park & she told us that there was not a chance of there being a vacancy. So as we ascended into the Park, Jackie urgently made a phone call to the Moab KOA campground to see if they still had vacancies. They did & we booked ourselves in for the night.

    Arches NP was busy & the 1st viewpoint, Park Avenue Viewpoint was full of vehicles, so we carried on. We stopped at La Sal Mountains Viewpoint, Courthouse Towers Viewpoint & Petrified Dunes Viewpoint, where we were able to take photos by just stepping out of the RV.

    We continued on to Balanced Rock, where we took a half mile walking trail around said rock, taking photos from most angles. We resisted the temptation to climb halfway up the rock itself. A fork in the road then took off to Garden of Eden, Double Arch, North & South Window & Turret Arch. We could see them from the road, but didn’t stop because again there were way too many people. We come back when it was quieter.

    Next we caught a glimpse of Pothole Arch, then continued to Panorama Point for a ‘panoramic’ photo, then took the next right fork to Wolfe Ranch, where there was a 3 mile trail to Delicate Arch. Again, let’s of people, so we promised ourselves we would do it another day, instead we drove a bit further where we too a short hike about half a mile to Lower, then Upper Delicate Arch Viewpoints.

    We returned to the RV just in time, before the wind suddenly violently got up & we had rain again. This was supposed to be one of the driest places on the planet, yet we were rained on! The strong winds were a reminder of how the weather had eroded this land to create weird Arches & Towers. It is an unforgettable spectacle.

    We left the park & checked into our campground & sat in the warm SUN & plotted our onward travels. The evening finished with Spag Bol & an episode of Dirty John.

    FITBIT = 10,452 steps / 4.85 miles

    Song of the Day - Archway Towers by New Model Army.
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