Stargazing Calendar |
Art Galley |
Ladera Ranch, Ca, 92694
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Stargazing Calendar |
Art Galley |
Stranded. 2.5 hrs down the road to Zion ole' Sputnik (our Jeep) breaks down. Stuck in the middle of the Mojave Desert, we get a tow to the nearby truck stop to spend the night. We think, 'now what?'
Mornin'! After a night of rest in our impromptu campground, we call our mechanic in hopes that he can guide us through the issue. But, no answer.
All of sudden we get a call back..... & beyond our belief, the owner of Tashmo Auto Racing offers to make the 2.5 hour drive to fix it himself!
Not ones to sit idly by, we venture into the adjacent Mojave to kill some time while we await his arrival. Along the way we discover an old railroad trashpile.
Further down we find the railroad, its tracks running off into the horizon. Sure as hell starting to feel like the Wild West now.
As time passes, we continue journeying through the desert without a worry, nearly forgetting Sputnik broke down altogether. Sometimes it takes a disaster to make a person appreciate the simple things.
High above it all, we can faintly see the truck stop & decide to head back before our mechanic arrives. At least we'll have a ride back home if Sputnik can't be repaired.
Fast forward 9 hours & boom! Utah! Mechanic couldn't fix the car, but drove us to Vegas & payed for a rental so we could continue on the road to Zion! The misadventure continues! Best mechanic ever.
Before finding camp, we journey to a spooky graveyard in a Ghosttown settled by Mormon pioneers over 100 years ago. One of the poor souls buried here never made it through their first year.
The eery vibe surrounding the town was simultaneously terrifying & thrilling. We even randomly met the great grandson of a woman who lived here.
Some say the only students left in this school house are the souls of the deceased.
Finally we go find camp & quickly start a fire as we talk about the turn of events that just ensued. Broken down in a truck stop to a ride to Vegas, a free rental, & now we're in Utah!
Sagas like that make a view of the stars all the more special. Sometimes life tests your will, only to reward you with something priceless. I still get goosebumps thinking about this trip.
Sunrise! First light casts remarkable shadows across the canyon mesas as we get our first clear glimpse of our locale.
Best seat in the house. A thousand feet above the ground we gaze out as the river meanders through the ghost town we explored the previous night.
The mesas are covered in world class mountain biking trails, renowned for their variation & exposure. Hiking a'int half bad either!
The stark drop off provided a jaw-dropping view that extended for miles into the red & wrinkled desert.
The original pioneers must have felt as if they'd entered into an enormous maze.
Know the ledge. One misstep....& splat.
Strange to think it wasn't all that long ago that we thought our misadventure would end in a Mojave Desert truck stop.
There she is; our rental! Still can't believe this happened. If the owner of Tashmo Auto Racing hadn't driven out to the Mojave (on his day off!) our misadventure would have ended there.
Alas, we reach the towering cathedrals of Zion, anxious to reach the canyon rim.
The textures & hues of the canyon are unparalleled.
As we gain elevation, the Observation Point trail narrows, graciously shielding us from the noon day sun.
Absolutely dwarfed. This place really shifts a person's perspective.
Flash flood waters polish the canyon smooth. Wouldn't want to witness that first hand! Flash flooding is a serious danger that takes several lives each year in the Southwest.
Tunnel vision. Amazing to imagine the force it took to create something like this.
Rewarded with some mid-hike beauty (& admittedly winded), we take in the scenery.
Waaaay up. This trail climbs over 2,000 feet in elevation & it often feels like there isn't a square inch of flat ground.
Our efforts weren't for naught. Again we remember that only a day prior we were stuck in a Mojave Desert truck stop. Hard to believe the fortune we had to make it here.
So much uncertainty & worry led to a beautiful hike with a moment of true peace. Guess its a reminder that life is the biggest misadventure of all.
With the setting sun dipping below the canyons walls, we begin our journey back to the valley floor.
When the sun reaches just the right angle, the canyon walls radiate an immaculate glow.
Topping out at over 8 miles round trip with 2,000 ft of elevation gain, we were eager to reach the bus that'd take us back to the parking lot.
Unfortunately we got off on the wrong stop.....and it was the last bus. As a result, we had to make an additional 2 mile trek to our rental car.
Another blessing in disguise. The moon lit up the cathedrals of Zion as it rose above the towering canyon walls. Totally worth the extra ass kicking.
Once we reached the car we shuffled off to Arizona then quickly called it a night, eager to regain our energy for a morning by the river.
These murky waters remain icy cold on even the warmest of days, providing a sanctuary from the desert sun.
After wading across the river we quickly scaled the nearest rock face. Somehow everything seems to look better from above.
Erosion has peculiarly carved the cliff-sides, even creating this Jaws-esque protrusion.
Places like this always bring out our inner child.
Makes it tough to leave, but all misadventures must come to an end. Back to the daily grind so we can plan our next journey. What a wild trip this was.
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