Sunday was moving day. For several reasons, we were actually surprised at how reluctant we were to leave. If it hadn’t been for the altitude and the fact that winter really is setting in at Flaming Gorge, we probably would have stayed indefinitely. But as they say, we have other fish to fry down south. We’re still hoping to spend some quality time in Moab and southern Utah before pushing on to southern Arizona for the winter. But interestingly, even though we were needing to leave Flaming Gorge because of weather, in looking at the forecast for Moab, it would appear the weather there was not much better. No snow, but rain and thunderstorms. Hhmmm…
Travel Day 2
Yesterday, we traveled from Flaming Gorge over a 8400 ft. pass and south down into Vernal. On the northern outskirts of Vernal, we had previously noticed Don Pedro’s Mexican Restaurant. This time, we stopped there for lunch. It was wonderful. Great interior decor. Great food.
Before leaving Vernal, and knowing it would be sometime before having access to another Wal-Mart, we stopped there for some supplies before continuing on to Roosevelt and then to Duchesne. Because we got a late start from Flaming Gorge, it was getting a bit late as we passed through Duchesne. So, we decided to grab a pull-out boondocking spot that we found just south of town. Little did we know that our “spot” was adjacent to a small box canyon that serves as the local shooting range. For about an hour and a half we had a pickup truck drive in and the entire family spilled out with an armada of weapons, including hand guns, big game rifles and at least automatic weapon. They took turns shooting each weapon until it got too dark to see. I guess we were lucky they did not have night vision lenses.
So after a restful evening and nights sleep, once the shooters were gone, we were up and having our morning coffee. For whatever reason, since it’s not typical of me, I happened to look at our route for the day as we headed towards Moab. It was then that I noticed that in our first 29 miles, we were going to have to climb over a pass of 9,114 feet. Now, in the old pre-retirement days, I probably would have pushed on after dark, knowing that Price, Utah was just another hours drive “up” the road, not even taking notice of this 9,100 foot pass that the map indicated was “closed in winter”. Map? We don’t need no stinking map. As it was, the pass was covered in snow. But fortunately, none on the road. We took it easy up and over AFTER unhitching the jeep. Except for heavy rain, and thunder and lightning close to Moab, we arrived at Goose Island campground along the Colorado river by mid-afternoon. We settled into site #3 and wondered at the sheer beauty of this area.
Even though it was raining when we arrived (see the water staining on the canyon walls?), and continued through the night, we woke up to a sunny sky and an unexpected surprise…waterfalls that weren’t there before the rain.