Wednesday, May 25 (continued)
In the previous episode of RVSue and her canine crew, the Perfect Tow Vehicle carries us out of Buckboard Campground west of Monticello, Utah, continuing a day trip through Manti La Sal National Forest and beyond.
“Now would be a good time for you two to take a snooze.”
Bridget and Reggie settle into position in the PTV. Reggie lies down in the doggie bed between the two front seats and Bridget sits in the passenger seat.
“We’re still climbing. I hope this road doesn’t take us too high.”
The plan for today is to complete a loop from Monticello, going higher than 9,000 feet, over the mountains and down to Newspaper Rock at 5,400 feet, east on Indian Creek Scenic Byway (Route 211), and returning southward on Route 191/163 to Monticello and our camp at Devil’s Canyon.
You can see the loop on this map.
I check the crew.
Reggie is resting normally. Bridget, however, doesn’t look so good. She’s lying across the passenger seat with her head hanging over the side.
Bridget doesn’t handle high altitude well. Poor thing . . . She’s either nauseous, woozy, or headachy.
In the past Bridget has traveled higher up than this without a problem.
Two things are different today. For the past several months going back to last summer we mostly have traveled and camped at low altitude. Then this road takes us very quickly up a couple thousand feet, twisting and turning as it goes.
We haven’t had time to acclimate to the altitude.
“Oh, a lake! We’ll stop for a minute. Maybe it will do you good, Bridge, to stand on firm ground in the fresh air.”
I let out the crew, setting out the water dish and hooking Reggie’s tether to the side mirror while I take these photos. (I wish I could remember the name of the lake. It’s really small, could be called a very large pond.)
A dirt road disappears among the trees. I assume it continues around the lake. I zoom in on what appears to be a campsite.
“You look much better, sweetheart. That stop did you good.”
We make a rapid descent (no, we don’t fall off the mountain!). We’re on Hart’s Draw Road which crosses a plain of sagebrush to the intersection with Route 21.
At the stop sign, Reggie dispatches a herd of cows with his most ferocious barks.
Where the first part of today’s drive went high into the land of aspens and evergreens, now we travel among sage and juniper and approach red rock cliffs.
I leave the crew inside the PTV.
Three bikers are disembarking nearby. One of them — a woman — rushes over to me.
“Is that your dog?” she asks excitedly, pointing at Reggie who stares at us through the window of the PTV.
“Yes, that’s Reggie. He’s part chihuahua and Jack Russell.”
“That’s what my dog is! He looks just like him! I can’t believe it! I miss my dog so much. We’re on a 10-day road trip and I left him back in Iowa.”
(Later, while walking around Devils’ Canyon Campground with the crew, we meet up with her again. She and her friends are in the site next to us!)
Only 8 campsites. I don’t see a sign for it and, wouldn’t ya’ know, I forget all about it and drive off. If you’re interested in the campground, you probably can find information and photos online.
Oh, well . . . .
Munching on mixed nuts from a can, I drive Route 211 out of the canyon. The PTV carries us across the flat expanse of sage.
“You don’t have to answer, cuties. That was rhetorical. I know you did!”
~ Remember with gratitude those who made the ultimate sacrifice ~