Arches to Zion

Yup, we ran the entire alphabet today!

Morning came, chilly and cold, and brought with it a seriously unhappy toddler. Getting packed and ready to go this morning was tough with a kid who wouldn’t be put down, wouldn’t be distracted, and wouldn’t be appeased. Thankfully, some bacon and toast with purple jam (some blackberry, some grape) eventually settled her down, and we were off for Zion right about noon.

Ami has really enjoyed spotting horses and cows on this trip, so when we saw a paddock close to the road in Hanksville, Logan pulled over. Dakota and King trotted up to the fence to say hello, and their owner, Miss Connie, gave us a big wave. Connie was thrilled to see Ami’s excitement, told Logan a bit about the horses, and helped Ami give them lots of pets.

Then we got back in the car and drove a little ways down the road to Hollow Mountain. Hollow Mountain is a Sinclair gas station built in the early 1980s. A large rock happened to be right where the owner wanted to build, so he just blasted the middle of the rock out and built his gas station right there. As you do. America!

Mostly, the place looks like a regular convenience store, but there are definitely a few indications that all is not completely normal.

With miles to go, we hopped back in the car again and drove through Capitol Reef National Park. I really, really wish we’d had a bit more (or ANY, really) time to explore this park! The scenery was absolutely surreal, and Logan and I couldn’t believe our eyes.

We were only able to stop once, to see some petroglyphs that were just off the main road. A nice boardwalk led along the cliff face, and it felt good to stretch our legs.

And a group of wild turkeys crossed the road right in front of us!

After that, we only made one more stop, in Circleville, for the bathroom and a drink. A friendly tumbleweed rolled by to visit, so now it lives in our van.

We arrived in Zion well after dark, which is kind of unfortunate since we’re only here one night. The so-called scenic highway we took to get to Zion Lodge certainly doesn’t seem very scenic when it’s pitch black outside. They really need to either fix that or rename the highway, don’t you think? Anyway, I anticipate tomorrow morning will be super dramatic and can’t wait to actually see where we are.

Looks like I won’t be able to actually post this tonight, as the wireless here doesn’t seem to be up to dealing with pictures. So, pretend I’m posting this yesterday. Tomorrow: a little bit of Zion, and on to Vegas!

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