Enjoying Capital Reef Campgroundd under the Cottonwood trees
After breakfast outside under the beautiful cottonwood trees, we wandered around the historic 1908 Historic Home at Capital Reef NP Campground. The kids enjoyed the activities at the Blacksmith’s Barn Museum and we ate mulberries off a tree from the orchards. We bought some fresh sunflower seed bread, loco cheese sauce, and chicken & dumplin’ mix at the “store” there.
Then we headed on and, after going through Hanksville, crossed Luna Mesa which was aptly named. It looked like we’d arrived on the moon! Who knew such places existed in the U.S.?!
On we went then to Arches National Park, arriving around 2pm.
Very, very HOT in the red canyon lands with beautiful rock formations of all description. The beautiful new Visitor’s Center had an awesome movie on the place and we noted at the end that it was thanks to the Discovery Channel. If all National Parks had Discovery Channel helping with their intro movie! The theatre there looked like a small movie theatre- very nice! There were museum displays of the rock formations and how the arches and bridges are formed by the softer sediment under the harder sediment wearing away.
We saw many of the famous arches in Arches, although they claim over 2,000 different arches! We saw Delicate Arch, which is on the Utah license plates, and the North & South Windows, and one of the longest arches in the world, the Landscape Arch. We probably hiked about 5 miles total this afternoon in over 100 degree heat to see them, but we were so glad we did.
We headed to Moab for gas, but I also just wanted to see this hotbed of outdoor adventure activity.
The first half was pretty grim, but the southern half was quite fun-looking with many cafes, restaurants, shops, etc.
Then we followed the directions that the Ranger had provided us, going 12 miles south on 313 to the 60-site Horsethief Campground that is run by BLM (Bureau of Land Management). Although they also have widespread “dispersed camping”, (places you can overnight randomly) located along roads or down dirt paths, this is a true campground with 60 camping sites. Each site has picnic table and grill, but there is no water or electric anywhere.
It is rather destitute and I was a bit apprehensive upon arrival when we saw not a soul. But we drove around the campground and located only a French couple, whose picture we took for them at the North Window in Arches. So we waved and returned to the gate to self-pay, but then headed off on the wrong campground loop. Then we saw about 5 other sites that were occupied and talked to the ones who waved and were wearing the cowboy hats, of course! We all agreed to help each other out tonight, if needed, and we parked just up the road (but within sight) of them.
This place is similar to Big Bend. Charles said of Big Bend: “Spanish for Big Bend is 'El Middle of del Nowhere'! While we love the ruggedness of the wild country, we are ready for some civilization and electricity. We keep blowing a fuse (4 today) and I think it is due to the d/c plug that I “fixed” today. I’m so glad we’ll see Ned in a few days. We have a little list of things we need help fixing. J
We enjoyed some RV roof time watching the sunset with 360 degree view.
Gorgeous. Then the stars came out and a warm-cool wind would waft over us until time to come in. We’re going to attempt some showers on limited water (31% of 50 gallons) and tomorrow go see Island in the Sky district of Canyonlands NP, which is just 7 miles further down Hwy 313.
Then we are headed for Colorado!