2010 Desert Southwest Vacation – Part One

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my US friends. I hope your holiday is filled with warmth and joy.

2010 Desert Southwest Vacation
Part One

Our Friday morning started with a little flurry as we rushed around putting together our Oklahoma Food Coop order to drop off at Chef Teri’s kitchen. She’d graciously agreed to hold our outgoing order and get it to the Tulsa drop off location. While we were in Tulsa we had lunch with Hillarey before embarking on our adventure. I guess it’s a parental thing but we like to have a little face time with her driving off for several weeks.

The weather was warm on the first day out on the road, but after spending the night at the Starlite Inn in Springfield, Colorado I’d decided it was time to switch from a t-shirt to a turtleneck. Yeah – I had autumn on the brain. Here’s a photo of the Starlite Inn and our new Jetta TDI. This is our second Jetta wagon, and it’s pretty much the same as the older version we had. Same great mileage as the first one. I can say that because throughout the trip Chris was keeping me informed – in case you’re curious we averaged 48 mpg on the trip.

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I’m a very lucky woman. Not every man on vacation would tell you when he saw a yarn shop sign and pull over for a quick stop without being begged. Mine did just that. Edla’s Yarn Shop in Walsenburg, Colorado is right on the main street as you drive through town. I popped into the shop and inadvertently interrupted a Saturday morning knit group. The ladies were sweet and having a good time. Edla is from the Faroe Islands and I bought a nice skein of Sirritag wool lace yarn to make a Faroese shawl sometime in 2011. Maybe something like Edla was wearing?

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By the time we’d reached Arches National Park in Utah on Sunday the weather was cold and crisp. We set up camp and made a run into Moab for groceries, then attended the final Park Ranger program of the season. Freezing rain pelted the tent sometime during the night, but we stayed dry and reasonably warm in our sleeping bags. Reasonably warm means none of my toes fell off during the night! I slept in socks, a stocking cap, a turtleneck, wool tights and still shivered. After a nice campfire breakfast the next morning we headed out for a day of hiking. The trick to hiking in cold weather is layers and I quickly warmed up enough to remove an outer layer. I’ve got to say, a triangle shawl is just right for hiking. Your back stays warm with a daypack against it and your front is kept cozy when you wrap the shawl to where the big part of the triangle hangs in front.

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My easy point-and-shoot camera took some great photos. I find the warm oranges and browns of the arches and rock walls incredibly striking and awe inspiring. The bareness of the sage, cactus and blackthorn bushes along with the twisting tree trunks create a sparse beauty that just makes me incredibly happy. Several times between trails we made it back to camp just as another quick shower of freezing rain occurred. Within minutes the storm would pass and the sun would come out again – then off we’d go on another hike.

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On Monday night we went to the Moab Brewery to meet up with Colleen, one of my Ravelry friends from Utah. Why I didn’t think to pull out my camera for a quick photo I don’t know. Maybe because the conversation was too good?

Hiking at Canyonlands is just as gorgeous but the terrain is slightly different from Arches. There was more climbing involved and the deep canyons made me feel like the smallest spec of unimportant matter in this vast universe. Often we humans think we are so big and vital, that we are ruling the cosmos. A day spent in Canyonlands can cure that notion, especially if you (or someone you love) walks out on a natural archway suspended over – well nothingness for miles! Chris is fearless. Me, I stayed on firm ground except for one brief moment three feet from the edge of this arch.

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Coming in a few days –
Part Two of 2010 Desert Southwest Vacation – Taos and Santa Fe.

Now…back to the chair by the fire and the sweater I’m knitting.
Happy Thanksgiving to all of my US blog friends. I hope your holiday is filled with warmth and joy.2010 Desert Southwest VacationPart OneOur Friday morning started with a little flurry as we rushed around putting together our Oklahoma Food Coop order to drop off at Chef Teri’s kitchen. She’d graciously agreed to hold our outgoing order and get it to the Tulsa drop off location. While we were in Tulsa we had lunch with Hillarey before embarking on our adventure. I guess it’s a parental thing but we like to have a little face time with her driving off for weeks. The weather was warm on the first day out on the road, but after spending the night at the Starlite Inn in Springfield, Colorado I’d decided it was time to switch from a t-shirt to a turtleneck. Yeah – I had autumn on the brain. Here’s a photo of the Starlite Inn and our new Jetta TDI. This is our second Jetta wagon, and it’s pretty much the same as the older version we had. Same great mileage as the first one. I can say that because throughout the trip Chris was keeping me informed – in case you’re curious we averaged 48 mpg on the trip. I’m a very lucky woman. Not every man on vacation would tell you when he saw a yarn shop sign and pull over for a quick stop without being begged. Mine did just that. Edla’s Yarn Shop in Walsenburg, Colorado is right on the main street as you drive through town. I popped into the shop and interrupted a Saturday morning knit group. The ladies were sweet and having a good time. Edla is from the Faroe Islands and I bought a nice skein of Sirritag wool lace yarn to make a Faroese shawl sometime in 2011. By the time we’d reached Arches National Park in Utah on Sunday the weather was cold and crisp. We set up camp and made a run into Moab for groceries, then attended the final Park Ranger program of the season. Freezing rain pelted the tent sometime during the night, but we stayed dry and reasonably warm in our sleeping bags. Reasonably warm means none of my toes fell off during the night. I slept in socks, a stocking cap, a turtleneck, wool tights and still shivered. After a nice campfire breakfast we headed out for a day of hiking. The trick to hiking in cold weather is layers and I quickly warmed up enough to remove an outer layer. But I’ve got to say, a triangle shawl is just right for hiking. Your back stays warm with a daypack against it and your front is kept cozy when you wrap the shawl to where the big part of the triangle hangs in front.My easy point-and-shoot camera took some great photos. I find the warm oranges and browns of the arches and rock walls incredibly striking and awe inspiring. The bareness of the sage, cactus and blackthorn bushes along with the twisting tree trunks create a sparse beauty that just makes me incredibly happy. Several times between trails we made it back to camp just as another quick shower of freezing rain occurred. Within minutes the storm would pass and the sun would come out again – then off we’d go on another hike. On Monday night we went to the Moab Brewery to meet up with Colleen, one of my Ravelry friends from Utah. Why I didn’t think to pull out my camera for a quick photo I don’t know. Maybe because the conversation was too good? Hiking at Canyonlands is just as gorgeous but the terrain is slightly different. There was more climbing involved and the deep canyons made me feel like the smallest spec of unimportant matter in this vast universe. Often we humans think we are so big and important, that we are ruling the cosmos. A day spent in Canyonlands can cure that notion, especially if you (or someone you love) walks out on a natural archway suspended over – well nothingness for miles! Chris is fearless. Me, I stayed firm ground except for one brief moment three feet from the edge of this arch. Coming in a few days – Part Two of 2010 Desert Southwest Vacation – Taos and Santa Fe. Now…back to the chair by the fire and the sweater I’m knitting. var gaJsHost = ((“https:” == document.location.protocol) ? “https://ssl.” : “http://www.”);document.write(unescape(“%3Cscript src='” + gaJsHost + “google-analytics.com/ga.js’ type=’text/javascript’%3E%3C/script%3E”)); var pageTracker = _gat._getTracker(“UA-xxxxxx-x”);pageTracker._trackPageview();

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7 thoughts on “2010 Desert Southwest Vacation – Part One

  1. Your photos are stunning! I'm sure this a trip that won't be forgotten. Reminds me of our trip to the Badlands 2 years ago. Looking forward to more pictures 😉

  2. I hiked Arches/Canyonlands this year and many of your pictures were of places that I have pictures of as well. We did the Fiery Furnace ranger led hike which was quite an experience. The yarn store looked terrific.

  3. Thanks for sharing your adventures to those of us who haven't headed west for a while. Did you have maps of the trails? Were the lengths listed? I like trails that loop, but sometimes they are too long and I have to guestimate where to turn back.

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