Cathedral Valley

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The Temple of The Moon at Sunrise, Cathedral Valley, Utah

After our rewarding stopover in Delta, Ulrich and I angled southeast, to Capitol Reef National Park and Cathedral Valley.

We made an early start from Duke’s Campground in Hanksville the next morning, driving west on State Route 24 to Cathedral Valley Road, near Caineville. We weren’t making the entire loop tour, only the fifteen or so miles out to The Temples of the Sun and Moon, but it was slow-going due to frequent World Class Washboarding. I parked near the Temples barely five minutes before direct sunlight began spilling into the valley.

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Befitting its name, the valley was q-u-i-e-t, and it was all ours. Shouldering our tripods, we wandered pleasantly until the light lost its edge and shadows began to recede. I cooked bacon and scrambled eggs and potatoes for breakfast then, and was cleaning dishes when the first Jeep tour arrived.

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Who can resist cracked mud? Not me!

The washboards felt even worse on the return leg, so I took it easy and stopped several times for pictures. Back in Hanksville, we ate lunch at Blondie’s before continuing south on Highway 95.

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Midday light, ideal for a harsh landscape

 

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Rock Candy

My wife’s paternal grandmother is famous in their family for her rock cookies. I’ve sampled them and can say they live up to the name—they’re definitely dunkers to me.

Another old-time favorite is rock candy. It’s hard to find in stores now, but if you drive through the east side of Zion National Park you’ll discover piles of it, tempting your sweet visual tooth.

Hot Rock

If you’ve ever hiked to The Wave, in Arizona’s Paria Canyon-Vermillion Cliffs Wilderness, you may recognize this scene as the entrance to the main theater, just ahead and to the left. I’ve posted it tonight for one reason—our day has been oppressively drab and wet, we’re both in the middle of annoying colds, and lacking a Hot Toddy I felt a hot rock was better than nothing as an antidote to it all.