Monday, November 12, 2012

Moab Trip Day 2: Dinosaur Tracks & Corona Arch

 After the race, lunch (and a nap for Desert Girl), and a long swim at the hotel pool, it was time to begin our afternoon adventures. We wanted to hike to Corona Arch, and we learned at the information center about some dinosaur tracks on the way. So we went and checked them out at the marked pullout. They were hard to find, but once we did we thought they were neat.

 We could see the race finish across the Colorado River, with folks still finishing the trail marathon. Some people ran eight hours that day. Wow.

 This lizard was taking the more relaxed approach to life, soaking up rays on the beautiful weekend.

 I was fascinated by the prickly pear cactus.

 Turns out I wasn't the only one. I turned around and found Desert Girl learning about the cacti. I like her hand-in-the-pocket approach.

 I couldn't hear what she said, but I think it was a learning moment.

 Meanwhile I had given Desert Boy a little camera and he was scampering around looking for good vantage points.

Then it was time to go down the road to the Corona Arch trailhead. The hiking brochure said the hike was 1.5 miles each way and included a ladder and another obstacle, plus lots of hiking on slickrock. That sounded good to us.
 Right after we pulled into the parking lot, three more vehicles full of people came in and lots of people jumped out. We let them go ahead of us so we could have a little quiet on the trail.

 Before long we came to the cable. Desert Boy was delighted (and so was I).

 Desert Girl had been happy riding on Daddy's back, but at this point she really wanted out. She likes doing the fun stuff, too.

 We could see Corona Arch well.

 We also passed by Bow Tie Arch.

 That rock is so incredible!

 The kids were happy running all over it. We had caught up to the crowd, and they were sitting on the slickrock observing the arch. Actually, they were observing the people on the arch.

 Apparently it has become popular to do the Corona arch swing, which is to jump off the top and swing on the rope. One company charges $100 cash to take people to do this. I don't think it's particularly nice to the arch, but we had never seen something like this, so we decided to stay and watch. But I didn't like being by a crowd, so we went under the arch and to the other side.

 We found a lot fewer people on the other side. One of those people was a kid about Desert Boy's age, and they had a grand time playing while I scampered around, looking around the corner.

Desert Girl tried out her climbing skills.

 Train tracks cut through this area to get to the potash mine.

 Then the guy jumped and went for quite a swing.

 The sun was setting fast, so it was time for us to hike back.

 No one seemed to pay Bow Tie Arch much attention.

 We arrived at the ladder. Desert Boy enjoyed it so much that he climbed down, then back up, then down again.

 Desert Girl also liked it.

It was a really fun hike, just the right distance for us and with such wonderful terrain. We wanted more time to explore the Moab area, but we knew we just had a little time left, as we had to drive home the next day, which was six hours away. What else could we squeeze into our vacation? Stay tuned...

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