Moab and Away

Saturday we did chores and later met our friends from La Sal, Don and Janet, for dinner at the Moab Brewery. Pretty good burgers and ribs there and it was great to catch up with our friends. We’re hanging around to watch Saturday’s baseball playoff game between San Francisco and St. Louis. It’s do or die for SF and if they win it will change our plans a bit. They did win – and win big – so we decided to start our run back home a day early just in case they win Monday’s final game and get to the World Series. If they lose, we will extend our trip a little longer in the Capitol Reef/Escalante area before traveling home.

  On Sunday we decided to take a trip out to Rainbow Rocks near the Island in the Sky portion of Canyonlands. It’s a little difficult to find and not really marked as any kind of a landmark on any maps I’ve seen. The area is on BLM land off a couple of different dirt roads. The roads are good up till you get to the rocks. Only a couple of sandy areas and a few rocky ones to have to deal with. All easily traveled in our Rav 4. You can go all the way around the formations and eventually back to the main highway, but the road becomes much more 4-wheel like once past the formations themselves. At a certain point, 4-wheel and high clearance in a must as some of  the drop-offs and stair-steps are too difficult in anything but.

The weather was bright sunlight if a bit windy. Normally I wouldn’t care for that much direct sunlight especially at high noon when we got there, but in this case it’s actually best. The rocks simply gleam in the sunlight and at noon, the deep shadows direct sun would cast are minimized. I used a polarizer on my lens to cut some of the glare and deepen the colors a bit, but a little goes a long way and I didn’t want to deepen the colors to much – the rocks don’t need it.

The rocks are the most unusual conglomeration of colored sandstone I’ve seen anywhere else in the west. There layers of bluegrey, peach, yellow, white, and red sandstone all plopped one on top of the other. We were able to drive to within about 1/8 of a mile of the base of the formation. We probably could have driven closer, but the road gets rougher past the point we went to and it’s just as easy to walk from here.

It’s an easy walk to the formation. There are a couple of fairly easy points go get up on the formation, then pretty easy walking along various benches along the length. So many different photographic opportunities all along the way. I concentrated on abstract compositions of the layers of sandstone. The sinuous waves of stone was so attractive to me and here all the various colors mingled to create really unique scenes. We spent a couple of hours climbing and walking all over the stone before heading back to the car and camp.

Sunday evening was a wonderful will for San Francisco, and come Monday, we moved our location to Torrey, about 150 miles closer to home. The win in the rain Monday night was a terrific celebration for SF – it was the first time the Giants won a seven game clincher at home. They got to celebrate among their fans. It was great to watch. I’m not sure they even felt the rain. But St. Louis sure did.

So now we will hightail it home so we can watch with our friends. We will probably be back in town by Friday. I’ll have a final trip post in a few days.

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