(THIS IS MONDAY’S APRIL 7TH POST)
How nice to have temperatures warm enough not to have to run our furnace in the night. Only a bit to take the morning chill off. How quiet & still the air at GOOSENECKS STATE PARK as sunrise broke in the East harkening another great day. A Pheeber walk, a few more pics of the deeply shadowed Goosenecks & we had the wheels rolling about 8:10. And we didn’t have far to go.
A 300mm TELEPHOTO SHOT FROM GOOSENECKS OF THE SPIRES IN MONUMENT VALLEY MILES AWAY TO THE SOUTH
WASHROOMS AT GOOSENECK STATE PARK & MILE 0 ON THE PAVED ROAD LEADING OUT
HEADING OUT GOOSENECKS ROAD ABOUT 8:10 MOUNTAIN TIME THIS MORNING
Had heard good things about VALLEY OF THE GODS in the area so that is right where we headed. Took us about 20 minutes to get there & we entered the East entrance off highway 163. Wouldn’t recommend this entrance for parking your RV while you took your other vehicle through the Valley. Managed to get the Jeep unhooked & the rig turned around but just barely. Much easier to leave your RV at the Western entrance off highway 261. Big turn around parking lot there to drop your rig & head off on the 17 mile scenic drive through Valley of the Gods. Although the roads are good there are a few gully whumps & tight turns on the western half of the Valley so wouldn’t recommend taking an RV through from the West side unless it is a truck camper, Class B, or maybe a smaller 23’ Class C. However, from the East entrance where we went in one can take in an RV for about the first 7 or 8 miles. But scout it out first to see if your rig will do it. No problem for our 26’ Class C had we wanted to head in. Only reason we unhooked is because we did not know what was ahead of us.
A NICE EASY DRIVABLE ROAD ALL THE WAY THROUGH
THIS IS CALLED THE 7 SAILORS & THEY ARE COMPLETE WITH SAILOR CAPS
We locked & left Winnie just off the dirt road near the East entrance & headed off with the Jeep. Right off the bat we saw this was a Boondockers paradise & how much nicer the drive than that bad road in Monument Valley. Road was graveled, smooth, & obviously maintained. Made me mad when I thought back to that bone jarring drive we had just been on the day before. No excuse why that road could not be maintained in better condition as well. Especially with a world class place like that. They obviously sank all their money into a high class fancy Hotel complex at the entrance with no thought of the bad road people have to endure to see the monuments.
THIS IS WHERE WE LEFT THE WINNIE WAGON WHILE WE JEEPED THROUGH THE VALLEY
I WILL POST MORE VALLEY OF THE GODS PHOTOS WHEN WE GET BACK TO ONTARIO
Back to Valley Of The Gods. What a marvelous place this is with it’s own towering rock Monoliths rivaling Monument Valley. And it’s just a few miles further north. If someone could only do one of these 2 drives I would for sure recommend they do Valley Of The Gods over Monument Valley. It’s free, great roads, & more to see. Plus can get much closer to the gigantic rock formations. Lots of places to pull over for photos & you don’t have to beat the hell out of your vehicle or your aging body. Again, I will not try to describe to you what we saw in our drive through Valley Of The Gods today. I will let my photos attempt to do that.
We have definitely put Valley Of The Gods on our ‘A’ list to return someday & boondock there. No crowding & with each unofficial large site the views are spectacular & go on for miles & miles. Only saw one Boondocker on the whole drive & what a great spot they had for their medium sized Travel Trailer. There are Jeep roads running off the main road as well so for sure we will be back there one day to spend a week or so in this marvelous place.
THE ONLY BOONDOCKER IN THE WHOLE VALLEY & WHAT A GREAT THEY GOT
WHEN WE COME BACK SOME DAY THIS IS THE SPOT WE WANT
This whole South-Eastern portion of Utah has always been one of my favorite areas & how nice these past couple days to have seen a wee bit more of it. The scenery here just goes on forever if one can just make & take the time to relax, enjoy, & take it all in. If you are an outdoors person & love some of the best scenery Mother Nature has to offer then come on out here to the West & have yourself a look around at places like Bryce & Zion Canyons, The Arches, Canyonlands, Cedar Breaks, Capital Reef National Park, Hovenweep, Grand Staircase, & the list just goes on & on.
CAN YOU SEE THE EGYPTIAN MAN’S PROFILE IN THE RIGHT HAND PHOTO?
LADY SITTING IN A TUB FACING RIGHT WITH HER FEET STICKING UP
ABOUT THE ONLY OTHER PERSON WE SAW IN 2 HOURS WAS THIS LADY WITH A CAMERA
We spent a couple hours in Valley Of The Gods & exited at the west entrance. Didn’t take us long to drive our way back around on highways 261 & 163 to where we had left the Jeep. Hooked up & headed off in the direction of Cortez Colorado. Picked up some gas in Bluff Utah then headed south through Aneth & Montezuma Creek to meet up with highway 160 again. Remember that is the highway we took through Tuba City & on up to Kayenta where we deaked up to Monument Valley. Reason for coming down through Montezuma Creek was to have us a look at that touristy photo opp place, Four Corners. Like thousands of others I figured we might as well get a photo there while we’re in the area. But………it was not to be!!
Soon as we pulled off highway 160 at the Four Corners site I spotted a booth ahead of us & sure enough the sign said $5 per person to drive into the commercially run complex. No way Jose were we paying just to take a picture of ourselves at the Four Corners. (this is where the States of Utah, Colorado, Arizona, & New Mexico all meet) We didn’t even stop at the pay booth but made a wide U-turn around it & hustled our buns right on out of there toote sweet.
WE WEREN’T GOING IN THERE & PAYING $10 JUST TO TAKE A PICTURE
WE SWUNG WAY AROUND THE TOLL BOTH & BOOGIED OURSELVES RIGHT OUT OF THERE
Headed north to Cortez & figured we would go on up to MESA VERDE NATIONAL PARK & have ourselves a look around. Pulled into a rest area first to give Pheebs a break. It was here that I turned on my computer, saw we had internet, & published my Sunday post.
HEADING FOR CORTEZ COLORADO
MOTORING THROUGH DOWNTOWN CORTEZ
DOGGY WALK IN A REST AREA NEAR MESA VERDE NATIONAL PARK
Mesa Verde was only another 3 miles or so East. Pulled in & headed for the Visitor Center. Well the Park isn’t into full swing for the season yet so what we could see & do there was very limited. The ruins are 25 miles from the Visitor Center so we had a decision to make. Drive 25 miles in, take a few photos of the ruins, & then drive 25 miles back out? We decided we will someday pass this way again when the Park is fully open & we can spend some time here. Maybe a guided tour. So with that thought in mind we backtracked into Cortez.
KELLY HEADS INTO THE MESA VERDE VISITOR CENTER >>>
Had spotted a Walmart on our way through Cortez so figured that would be our stop for the night. Besides I was needing a rare people fix & stroll though Walmart looking at all the Walmartians always puts me right back into place with the human race. I’m sure I qualify quite well with the Walmartians so I guess that is where my comfort fix comes in.
We plan to be in Bayfield tomorrow morning. BAYFIELD COLORADO that is. We will continue following highway 160 East. No idea where we will finish up our day Tuesday but we are hoping to get ourselves up & over the mountains. It will be cold at the higher altitudes we will be traveling so do not plan to Boondock anywhere. I’m thinking I might just end up with a lot of snowy mountain photos. We may have internet Tuesday night or we may not. I’m guessing we will begin our journey across the Plains Wednesday morning.
GROANER’S CORNER:(( While working for an organization that delivers lunches to elderly shut-ins, I used to take my four-year-old daughter on my afternoon rounds. She was unfailingly intrigued by the various appliances of old age, particularly the canes, walkers and wheelchairs. One day I found her staring at a pair of false teeth soaking in a glass. As I braced myself for the inevitable barrage of questions, she merely turned and whispered, "The tooth fairy will never believe this!"