Wednesday evening, May 16
I don’t like the Best Little Trailer to arrive messy at a new camp. So this evening I’m tidying up and making sure all the dishes are done and put away. It’s nearly dark as I walk out to the slope that drops off several feet from our campsite. I bend down to knock the percolator’s strainer on a rock to dislodge the coffee grounds. As I stand up, I see a pronghorn antelope at the bottom of the slope.
My noise brings her gaze up to me.
A few precious moments later, she lowers her head and continues grazing. This has been a good camp. I’ll never forget the cool mornings with the fresh breeze, and the birds floating on the thermals, as I sat here looking out over the pine tops to the desert.
Bridget and Spike start bickering in the BLT.
Spike barks and I know what he’s saying, “Get out of my bed, Bridget.” Then Bridget replies with a whiny snarl, “No, it’s MY bed and you can’t have it.” Back and forth they go. The antelope hears, turns and bounds away. Well, isn’t that a perfect goodbye from this special place.
Thursday morning, May 17
I’m bustling around at seven. The crew is still asleep. I fold up the patio mat, bungee it, and put it in the PTV. A quick coffee and blog time, followed by oat bran in milk, and I’m ready to hitch up and get going! Bridget and Spike sense something’s up and ease out of the covers. Soon I’m pushing the “tow” button on the dash of the PTV! We’re off to an entirely new world!
Over the first rise, I spot Gail on my side of the lane.
How sweet. She’s been standing there, waiting to say goodbye. Ken comes out a minute later. After a brief chat, I move on. Ken hollers, “Be sure and call me and let me know how the diet works out!” I can see the two of them in my mirror, watching us drive away to another adventure. . . . . Two gentle souls encountered on the journey of my life.
How do I describe the trip from Flagstaff to Lee’s Ferry?
I don’t think I can come close to conveying the beauty and magnitude of the cliffs, dunes, and overall landscape. I stop several times to take photos and to let Bridget and Spike walk around. I’ll be lucky to capture a portion of this magnificence.
We park at a turn-out in front of a massive, red, striated cliff.
Flat desert dotted with green lies before us. I notice three sheep running. Why are they running? I couldn’t have frightened them way up here. Then I see the complete story. Down below next to a tiny house, a young boy has arrived home and is running toward the fence. The sheep are running toward him. This happens in front of that incredible, natural backdrop. At that moment the beauty of what I’m seeing overwhelms me.
Truth be known, looking back on my life, great stretches of it were pretty crappy.
Nothing seemed to go right. I don’t know how or why I’ve been transported to this place of beauty and contentment. The contrast between the present and the past is more than my heart can take. I get back in the PTV and start her up. Very shortly we turn onto 89A and I see a sign, “Vermillion Scenic Highway.” At every turn in the road, at every crest, I try to absorb the colors, dramatic shapes, and the panorama. It’s simply impossible.
We arrive at Navajo Bridge.
I wipe the tears from my cheeks before stepping out of the PTV to join the tourists at the bridge. Navajo (I presume) ladies are selling jewelry and dream catchers. I take a few photos of the Colorado River and the bridge, but by now the sun is getting high, it’s near noon, and it’s extremely hot. Bridget and Spike have been excellent travellers. I can’t expect them to stay good much longer.
I want to find the campground and set up.
A few miles down into Glen Canyon, we arrive! I’ll tell you more about our camp tomorrow. For now, here are some photos. Of course, they’re a shabby imitation of the real thing. Some were taken through a dirty windshield. The most stunning scenes of all mesmerized me, so I didn’t stop, wanting to enjoy the experience.[slideshow]
What a place! Later the crew and I will see the Colorado up close!
P.S. I apologize if the slideshow is too much for you to load. I can’t help but include this record of our trip to Lee’s Ferry.