US Trip 2018 – Day 9 – To the land of canyons

In Out caching
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Another day on the road, from Parachute to Moab this time – the exact same start and end as last year. But the route between was a bit different, this year we spent some time in Canyonlands National Park.

Approximate time on road/out caching:  12 hours, 20 minutes
Total miles driven: 237.1 mi / 381,6 km
Total cahes found: 78
Total DNF: 0
States visited: Colorado, Utah
Famous places visited: Canyonlands National Park
Most memorable cache: GC1N2QC The Great Upheaval Dome Controversy
Biggest surprise: The low amount of people in Moab
Weather: Sunny, some clouds
Highest temperature: 34,4°C / 94°F
Lowest temperature: 13,3°C / 56°F

The regular stop

Since we’ve been in Parachute before (the same hotel), we knew exactly where to get breakfast (Shommy’s). And since we’ve driven this way to Moab before (same roadwork this year as last year), we knew very well that we had to stop at the Kokopelli Exit Farmers Market.

A short trail

We had planned to do the GC7CJ1J OH6-001 trail, and started at number one 8:51am. We love driving on roads like this, perfect weather and no traffic. Just silence and caches.

We eventually crossed the border to Utah, and saw the strangest Utah border sign we’ve ever seen!

More than 70 caches after the start, we finished the trail on GC7D5N3 OH6-068 (with some extra in between) at 12:03pm.

To the canyon!

The next on our plan was Canyonlands National Park. We’ve been to this park several times before, but still had to stop at the visitor center to stamp our national park passport, national park book, geocaching stamp book and our trip plan. We love collecting stamps!

The next stop in the park was  GC1N2QC The Great Upheaval Dome Controversy. A part of the park we’ve never visited before. The trail to the first viewpoint was neither long nor very hard. And the cache description did say that was good enough…

It didn’t look like it was that far away…

But it wasn’t good enough for us 😛 So we started the (much) longer hike to the second viewpoint. Because it didn’t look that long on the map 😛 It wasn’t too hard getting down there. But it was hard to forget that for every feet we went down now, we would have to climb up to get back…

We eventually made it to the second viewpoint, and took the time for some well deserved rest in the shadow of the mountain side. It was hot out here!

Just as expected, the hike back was a lot harder… But we eventually made it, safely, back to the car as well.

The hike would probably have been a lot easier earlier or later in the day. Lesson learned for next time 😉

Island in the sky

The name of this district is Island in the Sky (the park has a total of four districts). The view from the next stop, GC6QAFP Tafoni Weathering Patterns, makes it easy to understand where that name comes from. This really is the island in the sky.

We’ve been out here before, and found the other caches here, but this earthcache was a new one. This is the first time we’ve actually been on the canyon rim, without any of the protective fences. Kinda scary, but also incredibly cool! This place, as so many other places in Southern Utah, is simply amazing!

Another regular stop

After exiting the park, stopping at the park entrance sign (you know we have to), it was time to find some food in Moab. And we did as we always do in Moab, we got pizza from Zax. We’re used to Moab being full of people, and Zax being super busy. Not the case at all now. Moab felt almost empty, and Zax wasn’t busy at all, so we barely had time to walk over to the nearest cache while waiting for the pizza to get done. What happened, where are all the tourists?

After we got the pizza, we did a quick stop at our regular shopping place, before checking in at our hotel – not the regular one, but the old one – we’ve been here before, if you didn’t get that 😉

This time we also made sure to find the cache right outside the hotel, which we for some unknown reason didn’t find the last time.

Pictures

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