Sunday, October 18, 2009

Vacation 2009 Part 2

I finally got around this evening to downloading my pictures to my computer from the second half of the vacation and enjoyed the memories of that part of the trip.  We got some good shots even with the stormy weather of Canyonlands from Grand View Point Overlook.  The formations have three layers -- with basins and rims.  The lowest basin contains the Colorado River which we had hoped to be on in a jet boat until the wind caused our trip to be canceled shortly after we left the dock.  The view from above was spectacular nonetheless.

That night we ate at the Moab Brewery where I had a surprisingly good greek salad.  Paul
 tested the fall brew--I only had a sip due to persistent stomach problems that pestered me throughout the trip but I did my best to ignore.  When we got back to the B & B it started pouring.  I was sitting in the living room of the main building and saw a large buck and a doe walk right by the window between that building and the one where we were staying.  The deer are very accustomed to people at the B & B and will even look at you when you take their picture.  I did not have my camera handy that evening but was able to get a herd of doe in my camera sights the next morning as we were getting ready to leave.

We took the road through Blanding, Utah with the plan to have lunch at the new hotel and restaurant in Monument Valley called the View.   We decided to look for an advertised Dinosaur Museum in Blanding because my grandson requested dinosaurs for his gift (probably indeed expecting us to bring back real dinosaurs).  We took a wrong turn and wound up at a state park called Edge of the Cedars Park which sported its own museum of ancient pueblo artifacts including a very interesting ancient pueblo dwelling.  Then we found the Dinosaur Museum which I had planned to skip except for the shop but Paul decided to pay for our entry.  It turns out that I qualified for a senior discount for the first time at this Museum.  We were the only ones visiting and the display/collection was surprisingly good.  That area of southwestern Utah is a treasure trove of dinosaur and very old artifacts.  The museum was started by archeologists who work in that "triangle" area.

Unfortunately these two stops put us on track to miss lunch at the View restaurant.
We walked in a few minutes after 2 p.m. and they had stopped serving. So we grabbed a to-go sandwich and looked at the view and the nicely decorated interior lobby of the View hotel. I was particularly fascinated by a floor to ceiling post which had large kachinas displayed on ledges.  I also liked the dishes holding cacti and tried unsuccessfully to purchase one in several different stores.

Finally we arrived at the Grand Canyon just before sunset from an eastern approach which was different from what we took the last time.  We stopped at a lighthouse type structure and saw the sunset over the Canyon.  I forgot my camera but Paul had his point and shoot so we got a few pictures of that particular view point of the Canyon.  We then moved on to the Thunderbird Lodge on the Rim where our room had a partial view of the Canyon.  The next morning we took a walk along the Rim to El Tovar to have breakfast and then returned the same way, capturing the Canyon at different points of the morning light.  

Next:  Sedona:  Land of the Red Rocks and Sweat Houses.

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