Monday, September 2, 2013

A trip back in time

 Welcome to another grand adventure as we travel back in time to the dinosaur age! This trip was the grand finale, so to speak, of our summer adventures. For those of you who don't know, we inherited another son a week or so back. His name is Wyatt and he is Em's nephew. He is big into dinosaurs so we decided to show him one of Utah's best places for adventure: Dinosaur National Park. We left early Friday morning and drove directly to the visitors center at the park. The shuttle was waiting and we hopped aboard for the quick drive to the quarry. Inside the building is a wall of fossilized dino bones and some very cool replicas of some of the animals themselves. I can't recall the above guys name so we'll just call him Frank.  The wall in the quarry has over 100 different bones of all types of dinosaurs and you can even touch some of them!
Upon leaving the main area of the park, we headed out to a part of the park named Island Park. Along this road there are a few spots where you can check out some of the ancient Indian writings carved into the rocks. Sharp eyed Noah spotted these ones and they were quite interesting to look at. I had a discussion with a professor Wednesday night who believes that these are religious drawings. I countered back with my belief that they are drawings of history. Let me explain. I think that after a special event such as a hunt or battle, the Indians recorded the event. Hell, we all do it today one way or another. Some of you write journals or diaries and some of us go public doing online blogs. That's my opinion and I am sticking to it.

 Day 2 took 4 of us out on a long hundred mile journey of exploration. Before I begin I need to say how shitty the trail markings are out in the area. Following the maps provided by the government were a joke along with very few signs marking the outer trails. That said, we headed out to Crouse canyon that the rangers swore required a high clearance vehicle. Ya, right. After finding a nice lady in a Jeep who knew where we were going, we began a long day of play. I was counting on the Gopro to do the Crouse canyon part of this trip but........ it decided it didn't want to play. So, I do believe this means another trip out there is in store. The highlight of Crouse canyon is after you finish it. You have 2 choices: left to a normal bridge across the Green river or right, where you get to cross using an old suspension bridge. We went right. This bridge has a sign saying that 400 sheep, 200 cows or a 3.5 ton vehicle can use  it. It is a very sturdy bridge but, it swings while you drive across it. It is a very odd feeling swaying above the river while you hear creaking noises coming from below the Jeep. Lucky for us, Emily had her phone out and we do have a record of us doing it.  After that excitement we headed out to an old historic ranch along side the river. The tiny museum there had the grave marker you see above. Wow, shot dead. Wild times in wild country.
 The ranch was neat visit. They had tons of cool stuff in the old general store there. And their bottle collection had me lusting like no tomorrow. The history of the ranch tells tales of outlaws who visited and sometimes worked there. The owner was a friend to them till a pair of crooks decided that hospitality wasn't enough and shot and robbed him. I can see why he stayed where he did. This area of the green river is so beautiful. I would have stayed there too. I wish I had brought a fishing pole. As you can see, the river is just perfect to wade out into and cast your line for dinner. I need to go back.
Further on, we ran into a sign that told of the "3 corners" area. In Utah, most folks know of the "4 corners" area: where UT, Co,AZ and NM join together.  The "3" area  is Utah, Colorado and Wyoming. This was the best off road trail of the whole trip. Had it been muddy, it might have proved to be a challenge but it wasn't so yah...... easy! After that we took the scenic route home to the hotel via Flaming Gorge. Wow! I never realized that this area was so beautiful. It sits high in the pine forests with some really nice rock formations for shore line. Again, this requires a trip back. I think a boat rental to explore and fish would be a great couple of days. 
     Sunday had us returning to the park itself and taking some of the back trails for more Indian graffiti. There were 3 great foto ops and a whole bunch of dirt roads that were begging to be explored. Ya, I have to go back. One last bit of info..... if you stop at the rest stop just before Duchesne, beware of the Nazi cleaning bitch. We stopped long enough to pee and grab some sweatshirts. There were 3 cars in the lot and I pulled down to the farthest end and parked sideways. Boy, talk about coming unglued at the seams. I heard about it going in the door, pissing and going back out the door. Hell's bells, she reminded me of the soup Nazi on Seinfeld. Other than that, the trip was awesome. I do recommend that you go out there and see what's there. You won't be disappointed. Jeep on my friends!