Archive for July, 2008

Another Friend, a slot Canyon and what else? Utah

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008

I am truly enjoying playing the tour guide… cooking meals including breakfast with some home roasted coffee and keeping up with the conversations flying in the evening. A good Friend of mine, Brian Rushing, from Houma, Louisiana, has been here for a couple nights on his way north to Yellowstone and many others stops. Considering the size of this country and so few visitors, the fact that he has now stopped by twice to see us is an accomplishment. Terlingua, Texas was the first time. Planning routes with more time to rest and explore the local areas is what makes his own little Journeys such a success. I have had travelers pass within 10 feet (Zion!) of our campsite without stopping as we had planned… falling behind or… schedules.


A beautiful golden sunrise this morning was company to Brian into his departure for other distant sights. Yesterday the question was… were do we go for the one day he spends here? One cannot and should not leave this area without exploring the Burr Trail / Long Canyon and also the slot Canyon which ourselves had never seen. I had directions of it, as you leave Boulder on the paved Burr Trail Rd, it is exactly 12 miles on the left behind the huge cottonwood tree and with parking on the side of the road.

slot canyon entrance 2

slot canyon entrance 1  
slot canyon entrance 3  

We had stopped at the little campground first, 4 miles out of Boulder, the one with the road going into a creek and stopping there as the locals use the actual creek as a road to get to some private land. We met up with some campers ready to take off for the day and… six of their dogs! Spirit?… well, crying that he wanted to play with them as of course I let him. Not before long my poor buddy was being abused…

Spirit 1

There was a dog missing in this picture… it was just too much of a Kodak moment to miss the opportunity! It did not last too long, Spirit is a sweetheart but will not take the abuse as he vocalized his discomfort in no time and gently, but firmly, pushed everyone away! That was the last time they got close to him.

Spirit 2

It was hysterical! We went on into the Canyon, a road we will do again and again most likely before we leave, as the constant changing structures and colors of the rocks, cliffs, can take someone like me hours and hours to see and experience imagining the flows of the waters sculpting it over the years. It is a short slot Canyon with an incredible echo and we arrived while it was still a bit dark and the sun was not yet up to lighten its walls.

slot canyon entrance 5

slot canyon entrance 4  

There is a drum maker in Escalante, and as we were chatting with him on the way back, he told us that there has been times where groups of drummers, up to 70 one time, will go into the slot Canyon and spend the night playing around a couple campfires. The rain water filled with minerals has painted the dark vertical streaks, the temperature was cool and the place was deserted as actually we only saw 3 or 4 cars all day.

slot canyon 1

rock tree  

It did not take long for the sun to rise and slowly the rays started painting the walls of the Canyon till then obscure. It was as someone had turned on a switch… a dimmer switch. Who else but Mother Nature all in a day’s work so appreciated by the both of us witnessing the slow subtle changes. We started fantasizing about how great it would be for someone to be present in heavy rains and watch waterfalls from above on to the floor we were walking on. Maybe hanging on to the walls repelling as climbers do with a waterproof camera for such a unique experience… I might leave that for the next Lifetime!

slot canyon 3

slot canyon 5  

The trees growing on the rocks were amazing, the ceiling arching over us as a partial roof… touching and feeling the surroundings with all our senses makes the Canyon as a natural Temple of Life sinking the mind into a Peaceful Space. I would stay there for a long time if I could… and actually nothing is stopping us from spending as much time needed.

slot canyon 6

slot canyon 9  

I was just loaned a book today which is called the "Canyon hiking guide to the Colorado plateau" and I am really excited about it. They are the list and trail guides of "all" the Canyons one generally does not find in books! I will be planning more destinations tonight and as they are mostly out of the way we will try to spend the night in them, it should be quite an experience specially being present for the light changes early morning and late on the day. Utah is just an amazing State, and suddenly I have realized that again we will not see it all as I thought we would since we have established home base in Escalante and planning to stay here a bit longer. A reader has send her best wishes toward maybe a new direction that this Journey might take. Words or encouragements as so appreciated. But the direction should really not change… We just need to be in an area where a job situation will be available a couple days a week. Should not be too hard to find while asking around in our immediate surrounding travels. Only hoping that I do not again come across a "Governess…".

slot canyon 7

slot canyon 2  

I also wanted to show Brian the switchbacks a bit further down the road. He was alright riding on non paved surface as it is a fun road to go down and up. There is always a bit of shade at the bend at the bottom were we rested some more, some water all around and a light lunch for us. Spirit only gets breakfast and dinner!

Brian 2

He stayed on top originally while we rode down and took some pictures of us which he will e mail us soon. On the return we did the opposite, going ahead of him to photograph his ascent… I call this picture above "the dizzy picture!". He is just a small dot on one of the last hairpin turns, with a crooked horizon and the layers of rocks themselves being slanted, but the road being flat is a strange one!

Brian 4

The size of the bike really puts the size of the rocks in perspective! This Sunday we have more Friends stopping by for 2 or 3 nights from Denver, Tomas and Marianne. Tomas is a great photographer… They might want to see the Canyon themselves as I would never turn down another ride through it.

Brian 3

As mentioned before I am not able to continue selling Spirit’s T shirt myself anymore, as every time 24 pieces (of each design) is a minimum order when I run out of a size. What can I say… I guess being locked in a Kitchen all my Life never made me a good thinker for the path I have taken to help out with the increasing expenses these days. I will be switching to SmugMug for all merchandise in a few days, as soon as the inventory is sold. It will be a bit pricier but the ability to print one item at the time will be nice.Below is a list of the inventory left and the best way to buy one or more will be to email me so I can set it aside making sure I still have it and mail it. I will update the inventory with each Blog. Please use then the "contribution" button above instead. There are no mouse pads left and the Shirts are $20 each including mailing per. The T Shirt page will still be open to look at the designs.

With the "ADV" (Adventure Rider") logo: 4 XXL ~ 5 XL ~ 4 L ~ 3 M ~ 3 S

Plain: 3 XXL ~ 8 XL ~ 7 L ~ 2 M 

Till next time….

We are truly always under deep appreciation toward the readers that have send in a contribution helping this website’s expenditures which needless to say have gone up. For those who have not, continue enjoying the site, pictures, recipes, and if you feel it is worth $1 a month, the contribution button is above, snail mail is below… PayPal can even set you up with a ONE Dollar a month contribution…

Ara Gureghian   853 Vanderbilt Beach Rd #245   Naples, Fl 34108

Ara & Spirit