Over 40 years of caving
A while back my Dad gave me some slides to scan of a trip he and Mom had gone on to Timpanogos cave in Utah. One of my favorites showed my Mom holding a bundled blanket while in the cave. There I was at two months old on my first cave trip. I decided that if I ever went to Utah I had to visit Timpanogos and find the location of that photo. When I decided to attend This years NSS convention in Colorado, I figured I could drive through Utah and finally make the trip. Ric also decided to drive to the convention so we rode together. We arrived at Timpanogo’s Nat. park in the afternoon and headed up to cascade springs where we saw some excellent examples of travertine deposits. The next morning we got an early start for the steep hike up to the cave and enjoyed a great tour of not one but three caves, connected by man made passages. Our guide, Molly was very entertaining and knew exactly where the picture of my mom was taken making it fairly easy to find the spot and then have Ric take my photo there.
From Timpanogos we were back on the road and on our way to the convention in Glenwood Springs, Colorado..
Timpanogos Alpine meadow
Sunrise at Arches
I awoke somewhat groggily to the early morning light coming in the windows of the green tortoise. Soon our driver Jimmy announced that if we got up now we could climb the nearby rocks in time to greet the dawn and watch the sun rise. sleepily we all piled out of the bus and began scrambling up the rocks trying to find the best vantage point before the sun crested over the horizon.
waiting for sunrise
It was in fact a very impressive sight, watching the sun rise over the smoothly rounded rock outcropings. It wasn’t long though before the chilly breeze sent us scrambling back down to the bus in search of hot coffee and breakfast. After breakfast, before it got too hot we headed down the trail to see the arches.
future boy band?
We managed to see most of the major arches including the recently fallen one before returning to the bus and heading towards Goldbar along the Colorado river where we’d be setting up camp for the night. On the way though we made a stop to see a hugh wall of very interesting petroglyphs.
how'd Will get up there?
We arrived at the campground amidst a sudden windstorm and even a little rain, but by the time we decided to start fixing dinner it had cleared up enough to enjoy dinner and a sunset over the river. That night Jimmy led us on an excursion to the Ooooohmmm tube and a short hike up to a beautiful pool hidden in a small canyon. Then it was back to the campground to gather around the fire for more marshmellows.
Next up- Monument Valley
Early morning in Zion
After our hike to Angels landing the previous day we took our time getting up to enjoy a beautiful morning in Zion, fix a hearty breakfast and then the short, scenery laden drive to Bryce canyon.
Good Morning Holly!
We arrived at Bryce where we quickly realized we were at a much higher altitude as evidenced by the amount of snow still on the ground. It was still nice and warm though thanks to the wonderful sunshine we were getting so off we headed to hike down into the canyon. Several trails were closed due to ice but it didn’t take long to locate an open loop that went down to the bottom and off we went. It was a very enjoyable hike and the snow made for some wonderful picturesque views.
Horses on the trail
After climbing back up the trail though it was time to load back up in the bus in order to head for Mystic hot springs where a long soak in the hot mineral waters and a much needed shower awaited us.
We had one more stop along the way though- a surprise visit to “The Big Rock Candy Mountain” a spot named because of the candy colored hills after the song.
Big rock candy mountain
We enjoyed the hot springs immensely and had a nice big spaghetti dinner fixed alongside the bus before loading up for the night and our drive to the next destination- Arches.