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Salt Lake City to Bryce Canyon

UNITED KINGDOM | Thursday, 15 October 2015 | Views [228]

Cill, our host at Wildflowers was in a chatty mood this morning, topics ranging from Walmart to Presidents Obama and George W Bush! A nice breakfast of home-made waffles with strawberries and maple syrup, good, but not very filling. Ruth hadn't finished her shopping so we drove into town and found the re-development of the old tram/ trolley bus sheds - called Trolley Square Nicely done, but not fully occupied and the shops that were there were not open. However the supermarket was open, and wow what a supermarket, really clean and well laid out with high quality goods. Needless to say, we bought a whole bunch of stuff and it was all good, and not too expensive.

Ok, so now to find the I15. Because of the grid street plan we actually found it quite easily and soon we were charging down the freeway at 80mph. Around Orem we spotted a large mall. Dillard's did not have what she wanted so on to JC Penney. We did buy an extra suitcase as we had bought so much stuff earlier in our trip. Back on the I15 but got bored with hammering down the road at 80mph so we swung off onto the old Route 89, becoming our favour Route as it passed through such interesting countryside, being an older Route, and though not as fast as the Interstate was a much more pleasant drive.

Mostly cattle country, a lot of the desert scrub had been cleared, and grass grown and irrigated. It seemed odd to see the bright green fields in what was desert. Through quaint frontier towns, all with their Mormon churches, absolutely immaculate, even if the town was a bit shabby. Climbed up onto the Sevier Plateau, another cattle ranching area but with many abandoned shacks and barns. Didn't look as if it was very successful. On to Panguitch where we left the 89 and joined Route 12, a 124 mile 'All American Road' (!). A brief stop for an ice cream, it was a very hot day. Anyway, Route 12 took us east and through Red Canyon, a quite dramatic landscape of red sandstone hoodoos. The road had been carved through 'fins' of the hills by forming short tunnels; all added to the drama.

The road took us on to Bryce Canyon, not on our original plan, but so many people we met earlier told us we just had to visit, so here we are. It really was worth the visit, a fantastic landscape of yellow and red sandstones, hoodoos and spires and cliffs. We went to Bryce Point, probably the best viewpoint in the Park and it presented an amazing view, especially as the sun was just setting. We checked in at Bryce Canyon Lodge and a very pleasant surprise; the Lodge was lovely and such a change from Mammoth Hot Springs. Much more intimate but very tastefully furnished and only a couple of hundred yards from the Canyon Rim. We wandered out to the Rim after dark to stargaze and wow, so many stars, the Milky Way run right across the sky and it was difficult to pick out the few constellations I knew.



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