Just rolling North, SLC. Utah [video]

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

“Sanity may be madness but the maddest of all is to see Life as it is and not as it should be.”
~ Don Quixote ~


A beautiful ride on Highway #12 between Boulder and Escalante


We made it safely and honestly much exhausted to Escalante. Up at four, the fours hours of sleep on the cement slab without the pad proved only this body is not what it use to be. I was too lazy to set up the pad thinking also if I overslept and the restaurant we borrowed our space from for the night opened up early, our exit would take too long. Mistake number two was not making coffee with such little sleep thinking I could just make it to Hanksville without it, 160 some miles away. Wrong again. Lethargic and heavy eyelids lasted all those miles as then standing in front of the coffee machine at the fuel station drinking a couple cups of brown colored hot water, compared to my usual morning high octane freshly roasted and daily ground beans.



Why do I punish myself in such manner? I thought. No reply. Always learning for the next time. Hanksville to Torrey on Highway 24, Torrey to Escalante on Highway 12 also going through Boulder, all old grounds we had not seen in three years, all made me realize the indescribable beauty, diversity and vastness of this space. The heat of the day again however seemed to have followed us. No temps as in Tucson but hot. And yet so many sights to experience again. We will see how long we will last. September I was told is the good month to be here. I could use one month here. Burr Trail, Long Canyon, the dirt roads leading to Capitol Reef and south to Lake Powell,   Devil’s Garden, Hell’s Backbone, Petrified Forest, Highway 24 and 12 at a snail’s pace, even Bryce Canyon near by as I almost forgot a forest service road we rode last time finding carpets of multicolor wild flowers.

A resting meadow-4

A resting meadow-5

A resting meadow-2

A day has past. The heat has not subsided and millions of no see ums are upon us. I am having to wear a long sleeve t shirt with swells already all over my arms. I don’t know if the deet free mosquito spray I have will help. I feel a bit as I am scrambling and the excitement of finally being here is dwindling away. With his sidecar top on or not Spirit is panting stronger than ever, all this while we rode Highway 12 to Boulder and on to Burr Trail and Long Canyon only so briefly as the space turned into a furnace. We stopped from shade to shade, this is just not working out. This afternoon we finally found refuge half way back to Torrey at the summit around 9600 feet. It is cool, the no see ums and flies are also here on this green carpet and wild yellow flowers.

A bit of Bryce Canyon-2

A bit of Bryce Canyon-3

It is time to look at a map. We need to move on somewhere cooler where we can be out all day in comfort. It is decision time, we cannot last here. I don’t know why I am having such a hard time to get going. Mother Nature is a bit rough in this part of the country. I keep looking at the map and for the first time a bit dumbfounded. Glacier area looks good. Colorado does too. Cody? Bear’s Tooth Pass and surroundings? A bit closer. We don’t ride freeways and yet I am thinking about biting the bullet and make a B line North, way North. I am stalling, it is hard to leave this area I feel so much belonging to with so much offerings. It is compromise time. There will be the better month.

A bit of Bryce Canyon-4

A bit of Bryce Canyon-9

A bit of Bryce Canyon-13

Today I wake up to hundreds of Birthday Wishes and it is a feel good time. It is also Spirit’s Birthday. He is 7 now, I hit 63. I was 57 and he was 2 when we left. How strange it seems of the years having gone by as such turning into a Lifestyle with no turning around. My thoughts are always on Lance. He loved celebrations which meant good times and good food. We shared the good food, the great time. What a Gift it would be to just see him for a few seconds, a hug, his green eyes, all. I would give myself. But it is not so. How can someone cry on their own Birthday? It happens, it is. Yet, I also smile as I get a hug from Spirit. What a Buddy he has been, is. Lucky I have been, I know he also feels as such. I don’t want him to feel my sadness on this special day. Will do for him. Lots of treats, he is happy, he will remain as such.



I decided. We are making a run for North. Stop in Salt Lake City for a tire. My sponsor does not carry VW tires, I will have to find one and change it and we will be good to go. Maybe Motel one night. Catch up on my replies toward everyone that has helped us with the repairs of this final drive that collapsed. It is the one aspect I feel bad about, not having the ability to reply as such immediately. I try. I apologize to the ones I have not yet, but please feel "thanked". You are all in this special place in my Heart.


"I have had a great deal of interest in my photography over the years, for which I am grateful. Their sales are of much importance funding this Journal. Yes, please feel free to purchase one or two… or a few. I have been adding some photos lately, there will be more as I sift through about 100,000 of them. Take a look. “Smugmug” stands for quality. Thank you”

Ara & Spirit

Be Safe and well
Peace, Love, Courage

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7 Responses to “Just rolling North, SLC. Utah [video]”

  1. hobopals Says:

    Ara, have you been up toward Stanley, Idaho? Beautiful country and lots of wide open spaces for you and spirt–and great weather any time I’ve every been there.

  2. Randy Reynolds Says:

    Particularly made my day. Thanks!

  3. scruffy Says:

    a man with an open soul~
    Happy Birthday to you and Spirit!

  4. Sharon Says:

    As I sit here holding my dog, Archie, I can relate to that special bond you have with Spirit. Praying for both of you every night for safety, good health and easy riding.

  5. Dee Says:

    No see ums! What a great description! Having lived in Colorado most of my life, and now a Californian, my imagination makes up large, biting pictures of no see ums! I love your photography and have been reading past journals, enjoying every second of each one! Ara, you and Spirit are truly a joy and light in my cluttered “city” life, and I love you both for that! Belated Happy birthday hug to Spirit! Seven – what a great age for biking! Hope the weather has chilled down a bit. Looking forward to more and more joy from both of you. xo

  6. Sandra Begotka Says:

    Birthday congratulations to you both. Stay hydrated out there in that heat! Hot here in central TX too. Over 100 every day.

  7. Sam Berg Says:

    Hello Ara and Spirit,

    On June 26, Sunday, I passed you on Hwy 24 about five miles or so east of the visitor center in Capitol Reef NP. I was traveling on a Harley with a sidecar. We waved enthusiastically then we were both gone. I wish we could have stopped and talked. I have been reading about you and Spirit for a couple of months now and I feel like I know you both.

    I am 71 years young and have been motorcycling all my adult life and hopefully will continue to ride for some time to come, however, my mileage is less than it used to be. Your writings touch a sentimental note and remind me of some of my travels.

    Ara, be safe, you and Spirit. Don’t get down, remember a lot of us love and pray for you and I know that our God loves us so very much.

    God’s speed my friend.
    Sam (I live in Dolores, CO, if you come through this area, please email and maybe we can meet and talk.)

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