Monday, September 3, 2012

Day 15:

Day 15:
Grand Junction to Moab via Kokopelli Trail (well, some of it)

 Dropping down to the Kokopelli Trail.
Sporting her wounds from a recent tumble.

 Now were talking.
 Following some railroad tracks. It was hot!
 Hot and sandy and no shade anywhere.
 But the driving was fun.

 And kept getting better.

 Even as the temperature got warmer.

 And then we started seeing all of these guys. Runners, running from Grand Junction to Moab. And I thought we were crazy for driving these roads in June. Why would you run these in June of all months?


 The La Sals in the distance.


 Canyon country.

 The very few 'locals.'

 It was a bit scary driving through this, uh, settlement.


After the engine getting really hot on some climbs going up a trail to the "Top of the World" we had to descend and run the highway along the Green River into Moab.
We skipped Moab even though there was a large gathering of Land Cruiser aficionados. It was just too hot and with our truck nearing overheating and no problem evident under the hood we took off for a place to camp in the San Rafael Swell. We'll go back during the winter.
A rickety bridge we crossed on our way to "the Squeeze."
A weird paved road in the middle of the desert. The best I can guess is that it was going to be a development at one point...a long time ago.






Driving into the sun.

This is 'the Squeeze.'
Looking for a campsite at the end of long day.


And this is where we pulled off. No grass tonight. I'm not sure you ever get used to the sand and dust. There was and still is a deep layer in our car on everything. It gets in your food, in your sleeping bag, in your clothes. There's just no way around it when you're traveling in sand everyday. That said, it was never a huge issue for us. You give in to it and try to get used to it because there is definitely no way to fight it.


Hike before dinner.
Snack before dinner.






Family hike after dinner. Trying to work energy out of the kids and explore what looked to be a cool slot canyon near our campsite.












In the background you can see the canyon we were heading into.

Getting closer by hiking up the wash.





Almost there.







Wow, it's bigger than it looks. The kids were enthused.
















It was getting dark but we managed to make it back to the car before it got really dark.

A longish day but split evenly between offroad and onroad and the continue nagging of the cooling system made for lots of stress. Now we were nursing it Salt Lake City, our next stop, where we did who-knows-what to fix it. The plan for next morning was to wake up really early and take advantage of the cooler temps.

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