50% chance of rain went to 100%. A massive thunderstorm in Moab, but it cleared by 10.
Went to the Love Muffin for breakfast , they were out of muffins but hopping. Their roof was leaking into a bucket from the storm. Coffee and eggs and spuds, nothing to write home about. Maybe the muffins are magnificent.
Popped in to the Back Of Beyond and bought a book for someone else. Excellent Western and movie section. Matthew behind the counter was a very knowledgeable fellow movie fantic. For a young guy, he knew the classics. We agreed Annihilation was our favorite movie of 2018 todate. I recommended Under the Skin, as a good companion.
Matthew recommended Moab Roasters across the road as the best coffee in town, they claimed best in the world! It was another strange combination of clothing store and coffee shop. It was a lousy cappuccino.
The Arches National Park contains the Worlds largest concentration of sandstone arches. That’s where I’m headed.
My spiraling Pet Shop Boys Tee, drew comment from a small group from Delaware. They’d been traveling the park for 3 days so I got a list of best things to see.
Arches National Park is my new favorite and I struck gold with the day. The Rock formations here are nothing like I have seen before. There is also a magnificent smell , a Park Ranger explained that it is unique to the desert , after a big storm as we had this morning.I’m thinking a bath oil franchise – Karls Scent of The Moab, if I can just capture that Utah essence.
There was a bit of a back up getting in to the Atches National Park. It’s still prime time there, the temperature perfect for hikers. There are warning signs all over to bring lots of water, it gets in to very dangerous temperatures in the Summer.
There are lots of spots to pull over roadside through out the expansive park, one spot more spectacular than the next .
One of the first I pulled off to was The Balancing Rock, or The Nads of Moab, as its known to the locals. Ok. Maybe not to the locals.
Stopped at The Fiery Furnace , another prime viewing spot, colored by the excessive iron content in the stone then went in to The Devils Garden. A couple from San Francisco took my photo, so it’s otheries of me as well as selfies.
The Devils Garden is the location of multiple trails through the canyons, of various difficulty levels. I went in about a mile and a half and went left, where the sign right said to avoid if afraid of heights. Many of the more splendid arches are in these trails. These canyons are also the site of numerous movie location shots.
127 Hours PT. 2 – The Irish Connection.
How did Franco know how long he was there if he couldn’t see his watch?
Five hours later as I left I happened on another magnificent trail called Park Avenue, me home address. Leaving, I felt I’d a huge amount to come back for, there’s a lot I didn’t get to.
I drove 15 miles along the Colorado River, deep red from the mud washed by the storm today, to Monument Valley Movie Museum and Library, on the Red Cliffs Ranch (its an expensive winery and hotel).
A lot of the great westerns were shot in this region; any John Ford Western (a lot of my favorites); Thelma and Louise; MI2; the recent Lone Ranger; oddly the bible anthology The Greatest Story Ever Told; some of Forrest Gump (gag me) and the series Alias Smith and Jones, I loved as a kid. That’s just a few. My Mother would recognize a lot of the movies listed there I wouldn’t.
I have an odd connection with John Wayne and John Ford. When The Quiet Man was shot in Ireland, some filmed in the small town of Cong, a friend of my grandfather drove for the cast. He collected autographs of all the stars and director , and some original photos. An autograph book that I ended up with. My fascination with film started very young.
Leaving there I drove on in the general direction of Boulder, Colorado . With the mountains surrounding I was out of GPS coverage for about 40 miles. Abandoned by trchnology, I headed east, using the clear night sky and the guiding light of Canis Major to guide my way.
196 miles later I took a room in Glenwood Springs , Colorado.