Delaying departure from CR NP

Last night a windstorm blew through, urging me to get out of bed, get dressed to go outside to retract awnings and stow the satellite dish. The trees were helping as a windbreak.

Gloomy skies, periods of high wind and occasional showers combine with mid-40s temperatures make for an inside day. At least the bugs are clinging to something instead of flying to humans.

I do not like to travel in rain, and frankly I have not considered my next destination, let alone the direction! But I will be moving out as soon as the weather clears.

One highlight yesterday as I was looking for a laundromat: I found a fancy restaurant in Torrey, of all places. Torrey population is about 174 and located in the middle of nowhere, some 130+ miles from population centers. I had to ‘fish’ for the salmon I ordered under a pile of unrecognizable stuff. The plate was sprinkled around the edges with a powder. I overcame the urge to stick a match to the appearance of a campfire ready to light and ate it instead. As I fished for the salmon on the bottom, I discovered that the meal was absolutely delicious.

The desert assortment was wide and prepared on premises, even the ice cream. After the meal, desert and tip, the $36.00 seemed well spent. This was my occasional permitted treat.

But I was still hungry.

Forgot to tell you that the name of the place is Cafe Diablo. They also claim to have the world’s largest collection of Sparky and the Gang Coyote cartoons adorning the walls. Personally, I do not ‘get’ the Sparky cartoons.

Wow, the sun suddenly filled the entire sky! Of course I can only see about 100 degrees up between the cliffs, so I have no idea what is on the horizon.

I may have to move tomorrow a.m.

Tags: Capitol Reef NP, Utah

Laid back, reading novels, relaxing under the trees

Not much exciting going on today. I have been redesigning my blog, got it screwed up, and had to put in a little overtime to get it straight, a whopping 2 hours today, counting overtime.

There are a couple more hikes I want to take. I have been waiting for cooler weather, but it is still five degrees above comfortable here. So I need to move North or higher soon, after the hikes. There is a NFS CG at 8600 ft. elevation called Singletree about 30 miles from here. Although it would be a backtrack, I may go there a few days. And there are no distractions such as red rock cliffs at Singletree.

I will tack on a couple of new pictures. I am not taking many, as the view from the campground is about as good as it gets!

I don’t think I mentioned the daily home made pies and ice cream they have here. The ice cream is only so-so, but the little five inch pies are great. I waited too late to get today’s pie, so I got a loaf of home made bread instead.

Another feature of this park is gnats the size of hummingbirds! And when they bite they leave a nasty mark, slow to heal.

The picts:

Like much of the Southwest this area has their glyphs. Here is a picture of glyph…

… taken at this cliff. By the way, this cliff is in the near distance and a perfect view from the campground.

And a couple that are self explanatory:

Tags: Capitol Reef NP, Utah

A short comparison of the Utah National Parks

I visited Zion, Bryce, and Capitol Reef National Parks in Utah. These are outstanding and astounding parks, similar but different.

I did not visit Lake Mead, Red Canyon, Canyon Lands or Arches on this visit to Utah. I have previously visited Arches and parts of Canyon Lands. Perhaps another day. There are may similarities to the red parks and one can be overexposed to red rock!

There are many foreign tourists on this circuit, and many of them are in rental RVs. Someone is doing a good job advertising in Germany and Europe on behalf of Utah, especially RV rentals. Most are very polite and friendly, except for one that insisted on driving his large rented class C moho into a viewpoint parking lot clearly marked “no RVs” and then proceeded to park parallel, blocking all handicapped spaces, a pet peeve of mine. So I was compelled to advise him of his compounded mistakes. And would do so again.

But back to the comparison. All have red rock, but of a different character. All have nice and reasonably priced dry no-hookup camp grounds, and are supported by nearby commercial campgrounds that have full hookups for RV.

I think the largest difference is the availability of commercial tourist amenities nearby, or otherwise stated, restaurants, shopping and non-RV lodging nearby. Since I am a Rver I see mostly the RV point of view.

If a family visits these parks, looking for upscale and trendy food, lodging, entrainment and shopping then the following comments are somewhat a guide. But make no mistake about it: All three offer outstanding views of geological features!

Zion

Town just outside entrance

Free shuttle through park

Free shuttle in town

Restaurants

Entertainment

Lodging (non-RV)

Shopping

Bryce

Ruby’s just outside entrance (a single all-service entity)

Free shuttle between park and Ruby’s

Free shuttle through a portion of the park

For-fee shuttle through remainder of park

Lodging (non-RV) only at Ruby’s

Shopping only at Ruby’s

No discernible entertainment

Capitol Reef

Very small town of Torrey 15 miles distant

No public transportation

Lodging (non-RV) very limited (motel at Torrey)

Shopping only at small gift shops in park, quick-markets in Torrey

No discernible entertainment (except for Park Ranger sponsored programs

Arches (from memory three years past)

Full service town nearby

No public park transportation

Restaurants

Entertainment

Lodging (non-RV)

Shopping

Tags: Bryce Canyon NP, Capitol Reef NP, Utah, Zion NP

More new friends on the trail

Today I visited with John and Beryl of Wisconsin. I met them at Bryce NP, parked in the adjacent site.

John did not want to take his Saturn over some of the rougher roads, so they and I took Jeep on an all day loop tour through some back country of Capitol Reefs NP including some 4×4 trails.

Today they are off to pick cheries. Did I mention that this campground is in an orchard? Perhaps you guessed by it’s name, Fruita! It was created by the founding Mormons on their initial escape to the west, it is maintained by the Park Service. There are many kinds of fruit trees here, but cherries are the only thing ready for harvest now. The fruit is free as long as you consume it in the park.

I did not go because I am weary of insect bites I have been collecting. Perhaps a little Off should be on! I may pick cherries later this week.

John, Beryl and me on the day long drive:

Distant mountains viwed on the loop. This pass was swichback-haven:

Yes there actually is water in the area, but this reservoir was the only water I saw, except for the irrigtion water for the orchards, despite billboards touting lakes!

Tags: Capitol Reef NP, Utah

A visitor!

At Zion NP, Bryce NP and here at Capitol Reef NP I crossed paths with Tioga George. But only here did we have the opportunity and time to actually visit.

It was nice to meet George. We shared somewhat on travel philosophy, adventures and equipment. A very entertaiing visit.

George and I relaxing in the shade:

Tags: Capitol Reef NP, Utah