Double Arch

Tower Arch

Logandale Bluegrass & Utah National Parks


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Logandale Bluegrass in Nevada         Valley of Fire          Arches & Canyonlands National Parks


Bluegrass in Nevada

October 8, 2002 : It seemed like time for another vacation, so here I am in Barstow, on my way to a bluegrass festival and a visit to a national park.

Tomorrow I will arrive at Logandale NV, about 60 miles northeast of Las Vegas and a few miles south of Interstate 15. The festival, sponsored by the Southern Nevada Bluegrass Music Society, will run Friday through Sunday, so I will need to find something to do on Thursday. Since I brought tons of back reading material, I can sit in my chair and read all day, explore the area, or a combination of the two, which is most likely. Since Iím 35 miles past the half-way point between home and my destination, I should arrive fairly early, and will probably have quite a bit of free time after I arrive Wednesday.

On Monday, October 14, I will head for Arches National Park in southeastern Utah, which is at the top of my list of places to go. There are five national parks in southern Utah, so I may get to some of the others. I will definitely get to Canyonlands, which is near Arches. I will be close to Zion, Bryce Canyon and Capitol Reef, but wonít try to get to all of them on this trip.

Leaving home was an adventure in itself this time. A week or so ago we received a letter from the county informing us that drainage and street repair work would begin September 30. The first phase was the installation of new drain pipes on Bond, at the west end of my block. This caused no problems; I just had to go the other way when leaving.

On Saturday the paving contractor came by and asked me to move my trailer by Monday morning. Since I was leaving on Tuesday, this was not something I wanted to hear, but I was prepared, having asked a neighbor around the corner for permission to put it in her driveway. This meant I had to get as much as possible loaded on Sunday.

Then Monday they removed a section of paving about 4 feet wide on both sides of my street, as well as the concrete around all driveways, leaving a drop of about 10 inches. I got my truck out with the help of some 2 X 8 boards a neighbor had, although one broke in the process. Now I had to park my truck around the corner also, meaning all last minute items had to be carried about 300 yards. This morning I headed down the street pulling the little red wagon (actually the little rusty wagon) that my 18-year old grandson has had since he was about two.

It will all be worth it if the drainage repair actually works; they have worked on it before, but water from lawn watering and storms always pools up in the intersection. Even so, getting real driveways will make it worthwhile; many of us have poorly made driveways, about a foot across, with just a steep incline, instead of the usual gradual one. (As it turned out, the drainage and paving jobs were excellent. Water still pools on the west side of Bond, which is in the city, but the really bad part, which we called Lake Bond, is gone. The city paved their half of Bond a year or so later, and their pavement is starting to break down already, while ours is still almost like new.)

I got loaded up and hitched up OK, and got on the road about 8:40. I arrived here in Barstow around 3, and found a nice park well away from the freeway and train yard. There are a lot of trees around my spot, and there is a good breeze. So even though itís about 90 degrees, itís very pleasant outside my trailer.

For those of you not familiar with this area, my trip involved about 100 miles of travel through the flat southern San Joaquin Valley, then a climb over 4,000 foot Tehachapi Pass. From the town of Tehachapi you drop down a short distance to the high Mojave desert and the town of Mojave. The route from there to Barstow is mostly level, with a few gentle ups and down. Barstow is a connecting point for Interstate 40, California 58, and Interstate 15, as well as a major railroad switching center. Itís about 150 miles from here to Las Vegas.


October 9, 2002 : Since I drag my house behind me, I like to stop when I want to, not when the state sees fit to offer a rest stop. Sometimes I pull off on an exit road, pull over to the side, then get back on the freeway. However, not every exit lets you do that, and heading northeast on Interstate 15, I chose one that did not. It did have a passage under the freeway and a ramp for the southbound lane (the wrong way). Fortunately I only had to go back about two miles before there was an interchange that I could cross on.

I arrived at Logandale about 2 p.m. A whole flock of trailers had been waiting outside the gate in the fairground parking lot, and they had just started letting them in as I arrived, so I eased into line. I got a spot with water and electricity, although I had expected no hookups of any kind. At 4:30 p.m. most of the available hookups are already taken, and people who arrive tomorrow or Friday will have to dry camp. I was prepared to do that myself, but I prefer not to. It would mean I would have to run the generator about two hours each day to keep the batteries charged. Water is not really a problem; one person does not use that much and my  tank holds enough.

Logandale is a tiny town of about 1,000, and three miles south is Overton, a slightly bigger town. I did not feel like fixing dinner, so I went looking for a restaurant. I did not even find any real business district in Logandale, although there is stuff way off the highway so there might be one. Overton had a McDonalds, so I felt like I was back in America again.

These towns are located in the Moapa Valley, through which runs the Muddy River, although I have not actually seen the river to verify its condition. There is quite a bit of irrigated land, which seems to be mostly hay and pasture. The valley is bordered by eroded cliffs and mesas.

Trailer Life
: When I mention getting set up in camp, or hooking up to go, it involves a lot of stuff. (If you already know this (or don't care), click here to skip down.)

First is the attempt to level the trailer, which must be done while the truck is still connected. Here the ground is fairly level, but in some areas it may mean pulling the trailer up on blocks of wood on one side or the other.

Remove the power plug that allows the trailer brake and lights to function when you activate the truck brake and lights. Unhook the safety wire that activates the trailer brakes in the event it comes loose from the truck (thankfully Iíve never had that experience).

Next, remove the cotter pin that holds the leveler bar hook in place, and release the bar. This involves using a piece of pipe that fits onto a little shaft that sticks up from the hook. There is a lot of weight being released, so hang on tight so the bar does not spring loose and whack you in the shin. The bar bends at a right angle, and the short end slides into a hole in the hitch, where itís held in place by a little catch. On one side, this catch came loose and the bar fell out while I was driving. On the other side, the catch has been getting harder and harder to release, and today it failed to release at all. (This problem kept getting worse, and I eventually had to buy a whole new hitch assembly.)

Then you unlock the hitch and crank down the jack stand that is built into the trailer tongue. Keep cranking until it lifts off the ball hitch, then drive the truck forward a little, and crank it again to level it front to back.

Remove the hitch from the receiver on the back of the truck, and put it in the storage compartment, along with the bars. When the bar is still stuck in the hitch, theyíre a little harder to handle than when they are separate as they should be.

What happens after this varies with terrain. Sometime at this point I will use a couple of scissors jacks to raise the trailer slightly on one side or one corner if necessary.

Once the trailer is fairly level, I lower a stabilizer foot on each corner and tighten it with a bar provided for that purpose. This is not to raise or level the trailer, just to reduce the amount of sway as you walk around inside.

Hitching up is pretty much the same in reverse, with one important exception. Raising the leveler bars requires more strength than I have or have ever had, so I use a bumper jack to get them up where I can attach the chain to the hooks on the trailer tongue.

Camp setup also includes putting down some kind of mat in front of the door. I have a couple of welcome mat size carpet pieces, a standard welcome mat, and a 6 by 8 foot vinyl mat. What I use depends on the ground surface, how long I will be there, what I am going to be doing (hanging around the trailer a lot vs. watching a bluegrass concert most of the time), etc. Here I have just the two carpet pieces out.

At dry camps that will last more than a couple of days, I usually unload the generator. This is a two-person job, or a struggle with a set of ramps for one. I will not unload it here; in fact, it looks like it will get little if any use on this trip. Iíd rather have it and not use it than be without it when I need it. (Later I purchased a smaller generator that still did the job and could be handled by one person.)

Most of the time I set up the awning, which is attached to the trailer. There is a special tool, which is a simple metal rod bent at the end, which is used to pull forward a locking latch, and also to hook into a loop which unrolls the awning. Then itís a matter of sliding it up to the desired level on self-locking supports. Taking it down is simpler; the tool is not needed.

Finishing touches include setting up a card table or other folding table, lawn chairs, TV tray, and putting up a flag. And for large scale mountain camping like we did last August, we would also set up water jugs for outdoor washing, a clothesline, unload ice chests and other gear, and whatever else is needed.

It sounds like a lot, but it gets done gradually over a period of hours and the end results are always worth the trouble.


Itís now 9 p.m. As some of my readers know, jam sessions, or ďpickiní in the parking lotĒ are a standard part of any bluegrass festival. Iíve been listening to a couple of different groups for the last two hours or so Ė one a very professional sounding bunch, and one that is more fun (they actually let me sing with them). Iíve been talking a lot with Danny & Sherry from Salt Lake City. He used to play and sing professionally (while keeping his day job). He quit music 20 years ago, and just re-discovered the fun of playing with other singers and pickers; this is in fact his first bluegrass festival. Itís interesting to get such a different perspective. He played country music, so he knows a lot in that area, and bluegrass musicians often adapt standard country songs. He knows and plays with some of the people here who have a much deeper bluegrass background.

I will probably wander around once quickly to hear what is going in, then read a while and go to bed. I need to save myself for the big stuff ahead.


October 10, 2002 : Temperatures: 57 low this morning; 65 at 8:15 ; 90 at 1:30.


Today I went to Valley of Fire State Park, about 20 miles from here. It is an area of red sandstone formations, with lots of windows through the rock, some small arches, and endless dramatic formations sculpted by wind and weather. There are petroglyphs in many places. I did a little hiking on one of the trails that goes up a dry wash through a canyon. Itís the kind of place where you say ďlook at thatĒ as you go around each bend. It was pretty warm, but there was a breeze much of the time.

This afternoon the wind came up pretty hard, so that I had to put something heavy on my carpet door mats, but it has died down to a nice breeze now. Itís 7 p.m. and pretty dark, although the camping area is lit by bright arc lights, so itís light enough to walk around and check on the jam sessions.

October 13, 2002 : Temperatures: 54 low this morning; 80 at 1 p.m.

Weíve had excellent music, good weather, and nice people to hang around with. The formal show on stage has been great, with some very traditional sounding bands; no group was below average. My favorite was the Liberty Bluegrass Boys from Texas, followed by Arizona Tradition. I also got to hear Cliff Wagner and Old Number 7, a new band that has become very popular in southern California.

There were also two family bands. My favorite was the Lampkins Family from Las Vegas, consisting of father, mother and teenage daughter, and her best friend. They performed lots of fast, hard-driving numbers. Not quite in the same league was the Burnette Family - mother, father, three daughters and a son. They were competent, but nothing special.

I could not stay up for jamming last night, but Friday night I was out till 1 a.m. (the show ended at 8). Thursday night I sang and played with the people I met from Salt Lake area Ė Danny & Sherry, Lonnie & Halene, Jim & Barbara, and Ed from Hurricane, near St. George, Utah. Ed has forgotten more old country songs than the rest of us together know, but canít play much any more due to arthritis.

There are quite a few people staying over tonight, so there will be jam sessions this evening, but probably not extremely late, since most everyone will want to get going in the morning.

I will head up Interstate 15 and probably stop at Zion National Park for a short look, then go on to wherever seems like a good stopping point. Tuesday Iíll go on to Moab, where Iíll stay for a few days while I visit Arches and Canyonlands National Parks.


October 14, 2002 : I got started around 8:30 or 9 this morning. I decided not to stop at Zion, and to save that for another time. I would only have been able to do a short in and out trip.

Interstate 15 passes through the northwest corner of Arizona for about 30 miles, so I have been in three states today. The first part of the trip was through country with rugged but barren-looking hills. Actually there is a lot of brush along the route, nothing much over three feet. In the Arizona section, the road went through the Virgin River Canyon, which had a lot of dramatic rock formations, plus glimpses of the river from time to time.

Once I entered Utah and got past St. George, the road began to climb into mountains with red rock and bigger trees, mostly juniper but an occasional pine of some kind, and some irrigated fields. Approaching Cedar City, I went through a high valley with horses, cows, hay and pastureland, all lined by mountains on both sides. At a rest stop near Kanarraville, it was very windy, and I could see bigger trees on the higher mountains. There were also a lot of small oak trees, mostly 20 feet tall or less. They appeared to be black oaks. At 11:40 (Mountain Daylight Time) it was 69 degrees.

Instead of taking Interstate 15 all the way to I-70, I turned east at Cedar City on Utah Highway 14. This road went up to 9,900 feet, and almost immediately offered views of dark, tall evergreens, with yellow aspens for contrast. There is a view into Zion National Park where you can see plateaus, canyons, and large forests of evergreens with aspens mixed in. There were patches of snow along the road at some places, and at one flat, tree-covered area, good size snowfields. At one point the road went through lava fields for a couple of miles, mostly covered with trees. In the Duck Creek area at 2:30 the temperature was 60 degrees.

The road dropped down to around 5,000 feet, where I took Utah 89 north. Most of the way this road follows the Sevier (pronounced ďsevereĒ) River through valleys with some farming, and weathered mountains on both sides. A few places it narrowed and there were rock spires and other formations close to the road.

I am staying tonight at Richfield, on I-70, a few miles east of the junction with Utah 89. It was 65 degrees when I got here at 5:15, and now at 8:30 it is about 45. This is still in the Sevier Valley, and there is snow at the top of the mountains adjacent to the valley. The elevation here is about 5,200 feet.

At 9 p.m. itís 39 degrees.


October 15, 2002 : Except for Thursday night, it was cool enough each night in Nevada to put on a light-weight long sleeve shirt after dark. However, the days always started with shorts and a T-shirt. Today started with jeans, a T-shirt with a long sleeve flannel shirt, and the heater on, in both the trailer and the truck. The low last night was 24 degrees, but it was up to the mid-50ís by the time I left Richfield at 9:30. A couple of hours into the trip, the flannel shirt and the heater were off, but I never used the air conditioner.

The stretch I traveled today was one of the most scenic of my two trips this year. Other spots have been as good or better, but none offered the dramatic scenery that I enjoyed throughout the entire trip today. I followed Interstate 70 most of the way, going though canyon country with views of mesas, cliffs, towers and other shapes, in red, tan and gray rock. There were times when the road would drop down into a large level area and I would think it was not going to go any lower, then the land on one side or another would drop off into a canyon. At one long flat stretch, I came to a sign warning, 6.5% downgrade ahead; trucks use low gears. More canyons and cliffs would follow every stretch of flat land.

I turned south off I-70 on US Highway 191 into Moab. Moab is a little more than one third of the way up from the southern border with Arizona, and about 30 miles west of the Colorado border. It is the jumping off point for Arches and Canyonlands National Parks. The entrance to Arches is about 10 miles north of where I am staying.

The elevation here is about 4,500 feet. Although lows matching last night are unlikely, it was 51 degrees at 6:30 and it was obviously time to be inside for the night. It was not quite dark, but by 7 it was. There is a view of the snow-capped La Sal Mountains (11,000 feet at the highest point) to the southeast, a cliff of sculpted rock to the west, and red hills with scattered houses to the east. Above the hills, but not visible here, are smooth sandstone cliffs.

October 16, 2002 : I donít really know when I first looked at a picture from Arches National Park and decided I wanted to go there. I do know today is the day I finally did it. It exceeded all expectations. Words and even pictures canít adequately show the dramatic sandstone walls, weird shapes and the arches. Let it be sufficient to say that if the park had not a single arch, it would still be worth seeing.

There are lots of places to stop and see things with no walking or a very short walk; and of course, lots of longer walks. My ďbigĒ walks for today were at the Windows area, where you can see a number of arches, and go all the way around the North and South Windows. From the same area, itís a fairly short walk to Double Arch. There are a number of smaller arches, which were not identified on the map or along the trail. The park has several thousand arches, and they could not think of names for all of them.

I then went to the area of the parkís most famous feature, Delicate Arch. I did not make the three mile round trip to the arch today, but instead took a steep half mile walk to a viewpoint at the edge of the canyon opposite the arch.

Tomorrow and Friday I will go to Delicate Arch, and hopefully Tower Arch, both requiring hikes of three miles or more round trip. I also want to go to the Devilís Garden area, where about three miles of walking will take you to a half dozen major arches.


October 18, 2002 : Itís just after 6 p.m. (MDT), the sun dropped out of sight behind the ridge about five minutes ago, and at 60 degrees itís too cold for me to sit outside. Of course, Iíve sat out in much colder weather, properly dressed and with a campfire, but when the trailer is warm and handy, itís too much trouble to create the necessary conditions for sitting outside.

Yesterday I went to two of the major attractions in Arches Ė Devilís Garden and Delicate Arch. The Devilís Garden trail goes through an area of striking sandstone walls, spires and arches. The main part of the trial leads to Landscape Arch, the longest in the park. In 1991 a large chuck of rock fell from this arch, causing the park service to close the trail that goes under the arch. From this area a more primitive trail goes another mile and a half to Double O arch, with side trails to Partition Arch and Navajo Arch. Having seen pictures of all these, I was most interested in getting to Navajo, so I skipped the extra two mile round trip to Double O and went to Navajo and Partition. Along the trail you pass by Wall Arch, and short side trails lead to Tunnel Arch and Pine Tree Arch. This walk was about three miles or so round trip. (In 2008 Wall Arch collapsed, and is an arch no more. See photos on my Utah Photo Album page.)

After a break to eat lunch, I headed for Wolfe Ranch, the starting point for the trail to Delicate Arch. (Wolfe was a Civil War veteran and the only person known to have established a permanent residence in the territory now covered by the park). Delicate Arch is the signature visual symbol of the park, as well as Utahís national parks and the state itself. It appears on the current Utah license plates.

The trail is three miles round trip, with quite a bit of up and down, and a long stretch across open sandstone. There is no real shade on the entire hike (the biggest trees in the area are usually 10 feet tall or less), and itís considered ďfairly strenuous.Ē I took my time, and just like when Iím driving down the highway with my trailer, nearly everyone passed me Ė but I still reached my destination. The usual pictures of Delicate Arch make it look like it is on a fairly level area, but in fact it is perched on the edge of a deep canyon, and it is not possible to get to the lower side of it. Even so, you can walk all around the upper area, and get a number of good views.

I had hoped to also go to Broken Arch, but I decided not to add another mile through open country to my workload, and saved it for another day.

Today I went to Canyonlands National Park, which is west of Arches. Itís about 20 miles from US191, up Utah 313. It is a vast area of canyons and plateaus, covering over 300,000 acres, and includes the confluence of the Green and the Colorado Rivers. The area I visited is called Island in the Sky, which is a vast mesa at 6,000 feet, with views into the Green River, Colorado River, and many other canyons. There are many vista points, as well as hiking trails and four-wheel drive roads. The area was relatively unknown prior to the 1950ís, when roads were built for uranium prospecting. It became a national park in 1964. Below the ďislandĒ there is a large area called the White Rim, at 5,000 feet, cut by numerous lower canyons. The big rivers meet at the 4,000-foot level. (To read about an early exploration of the Green and Colorado River canyons, I highly recommend The Exploration of the Colorado River and its Canyons by J.W. Powell. (2011 update: An even better book is A Canyon Voyage by Frederick Dellenbaugh - it covers the second Powell expedition; Powell's account includes events from both voyages, without distinguishing which is which.)

When I got back to camp, I realized I could not do everything I wanted to do in the scheduled remaining time. I decided that it would be foolish to pass up the few places in Arches that I have not yet seen while I am right here, so I paid for another night at the RV park and will stay until Sunday morning. I intend to come back, but nothing in life is guaranteed.


October 20, 2002 : I have a number of photos from the Internet, mostly of Delicate Arch, and a screen saver with a lot of nice pictures. None of them show the effort required to get to the locations in the pictures.

Saturday I went into the park, with Tower Arch as my destination. A couple of miles into the park, I stopped to take some pictures, and discovered that the batteries in the digital camera had run down. I have a bag with extra batteries and other accessories, but I had foolishly left it in the trailer. I debated going on and just not taking pictures, but I realized what a bad idea that was, and headed back to town. I was going to stop at the first store and buy some batteries, but once I got to town, it was only another mile to the RV park, so I got my bag and retraced my steps. This was the best "extra mile" I have ever gone, since I would have missed out on taking photos of Tower Arch and everything along the trail.

Once back in the park, I took the rough 8-mile dirt road to Klondike Bluffs. Where the road ends, a two-mile (one way) trail starts to Tower Arch. The trail leads up a rocky ridge, across a fairly level area, then down into a large basin, with huge sandstone formations on several sides. Most of the last half mile of the trail is uphill through loose sand, but the view of the arch is worth the trip, and the hike was enjoyable, through some beautiful high desert country. Tower Arch is a fairly good size one, with the upper part at least 30 feet deep horizontally, and 40 feet high. Above the arch, on a separate wall of sandstone, is a dramatic tower with a bulging top.

When I got back to the truck I had a snack, then went to Broken Arch, a one-mile round trip, mostly across open level ground. The best thing about the arch is that it is not broken, but has a large crack and a dip in the center. There was a couple from Mexico there, and he had climbed up on top of the arch. I got a good picture of him, and arranged to send it to them via Email.

I got started home about 9:30 this morning, but I did not check my map carefully, and did not turn off Interstate 70 when I should have. This resulted in my going south quite a bit farther than I needed to, and having to double back on Interstate 15 and some county and state highways to get to US 50. I had hoped to get a little farther, but stopped for the night at 4:30 in Delta UT. This area is a large, flat valley with a lot of farming, but with mountains visible in most directions, including some very snowy ones to the southeast, probably the Tushar Mountains in Fishlake National Forest, which reach an elevation of over 12,000 feet.

It was fairly warm when I got here; I could sit outside in the shade in jeans and a T-shirt. It soon got cool enough to move to the sunny side and put on a long-sleeve shirt; by 7 p.m. it was down to 51 degrees, and well past my time to come inside. The elevation here is a little above 4,600 feet.

I am hoping to go home by way of Tioga Pass. I will call Yosemite National Park tomorrow to check on the weather. Then at Ely NV I will either take US 6 to California 120, or stay on US 50 and go over Donner Pass.

Stuff about Utah: Moab appears to be the mountain bike capitol of the world (and you thought it was Auberry Road). There were always bikes on the road and vehicles carrying bikes, and on the way to my RV park was a sign pointing to the Slick Rock Bicycle Park. There was a banner across Main Street announcing the Fat Tire Festival the week I was there. I first thought this was some sort of 4-wheel drive event, but after seeing dozens of cars with anywhere from two to six bikes, I realized it was for bikes.

Many states have strange ideas about liquor, and Utah is one of them. You must buy bottled booze in a state-owned store (and California thinks the lottery is a good money maker). You canít buy the mix there Ė just liquor. You are not allowed to drink in a bar, but you can drink in private clubs. What this means is that you go into a building that looks exactly like a bar, and someone you've never met before who is already a member sponsors you. You sign your name on a piece of paper and youíre a member, and they happily serve whatever you desire.


October 21, 2002 : I got an early start, about 7:45 Mountain Time, with a thermometer reading of 27 degrees at 8 a.m. just after sunrise. Driving on US 6 is like having your own highway. At one point, I measured 60 miles during which I met just five cars. During one stretch of 30 miles, there were none. I went 93 miles without anyone passing me (I drive 55 or a little more, and the speed limit is 70).

This part of Nevada is more scenic than what I saw along Interstate 80 last summer. Most of the day consisted of straight stretches across basins of 10 to 30 miles, followed by mountain passes. The first two were over 7,000 (one was 7,700), and the others all topped 6,000. The elevation is not marked in the basins, but I doubt if I dropped down more than a thousand feet from the passes at any point. The scenery consisted largely of sagebrush, juniper and piŮon pine.

I stopped for the night at Tonopah, which is 279 miles from Fresno, according to my trip planning program. Since the cost was quite a bit lower than usual, I gave them another $11 in the slot machines. I stopped about 3:30, but it was 4:30 Utah time and I had been on the road for nine hours, so it was time. It was windy all across the state, and cooled off quickly here, at 6,000 feet.


October 26, 2002 : The last day of my trip was uneventful, but very scenic. As I drove out of Tonopah on US 6/95 I saw guys picking up trash along the highway at 7:30 a.m. in 34-degree weather. Think about this if you donít like your job.

US 6 departed from 95 about 40 miles from Tonopah, and went over some high passes, into territory covered by single-leaf piŮon pines. After a few standard Nevada basins and passes, I entered California. At the town of Benton, I took California 120, which goes over the 8,000 foot Sagehen Summit, then drops down to join US 395 about five miles south of Lee Vining. There were some interesting rock formations along the road, and a great view of the eastern Sierra from the top of the pass. It was 42 degrees with bright sunshine around 11 a.m.

From Lee Vining I went over Tioga Pass (9,900 feet), entering Yosemite National Park. There are some management fires along that road, so the views were hazy but still beautiful. The road drops down to Yosemite Valley at 4,000 feet, then goes back up close to 6,000 at Chinquapin, before gradually leading down to the San Joaquin Valley at the 400 feet level. So the day had its ups and downs.

I got home around 3:30 to find my street still torn up, and my driveway inaccessible. So once again I parked the trailer several hundred feet away and hauled stuff to my house with a grocery cart that someone left in front of my house last summer. The next day the ditch was filled in and after cleaning the trailer and putting it in storage, I was able to get into my driveway to finish unloading.

I left Fresno with temperatures in the 90ís and returned to find them in the 70ís. Nights are still a lot warmer than the 34 typical of Moab. I was totally happy with my decision to put Arches National Park near the top of my ďplaces to go list,Ē and I definitely plan to return. 

(Read about my return visits to Arches in 2004 here, in 2015 here, in 2019 here, and in 2022 here.

--Dick Estel, October 2002



Arizona Tradition Lampkins Family Liberty Bluegrass Boys
Ron Spears & Within Tradition Cliff Wagner & the Old #7 Burnett Family
Windows in rock, Valley of Fire State Park Arch near Mouse Tank Fire Canyon
Elephant Rock, Valley of Fire Zion Park Overlook, Utah Highway 14 Vista Point on I-70 in Utah
Park Avenue, Arches National Park Formations near Park Avenue Balanced rock at Park Avenue
Your brain on sandstone Double Arch Landscape Arch
From inside Navajo Arch Wall Arch Skyline Arch
Delicate Arch Another view of Delicate Arch  North & South Windows
Tower Arch Looking at the tower from inside the arch Balanced Rock
Juniper Tree The Three Gossips View from Visitor Center, Canyonlands National Park
View from Grand View Point Bike & 4-Wheel Drive Road into the canyon View from White Rim Overlook

Web Sites

Recommended CDs, DVDs, Books

Arches National Park

Valley of Fire State Park Canyonlands


Dick's Bluegrass Links

Dick's Photo Links

J.W. Powell Colorado River Books

Southern Nevada Bluegrass Music Society

Moab UT
Moapa Valley Dick's Bluegrass T-Shirt Photos Island in the Sky


Travel Reports
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Before 2002
Early Trips Later Trips
Camping Trips Backpacking Trips
Early Stargazer Rock Camps 1961 Monterey Jazz Festival
Bluegrass Odyssey
Multi-Year Compilations
Fresno Area Canal Walks Clovis Trail Walks
Journey of 2002 (Ohio & Back) Logandale & Utah Parks 2002
Arizona & Bluegrass on the River 2003 Grand Canyon & Logandale Bluegrass 2003
Parkfield & Huck Finn 2003 Early Frog Camps (2003-2005)
Paso Robles & Parkfield 2004 Road Trip 2004 (Ohio & Back)
Bullhead City Bluegrass, Mesa, Superstition Bluegrass 2004 Bluegrass in the Foothills 2004
Arizona-Southern California 2005 Huck Finn Bluegrass 2005
Morro Bay 2005 Stargazer Rock Camp 2005
Parkfield Bluegrass 2005    
Huck Finn Bluegrass 2006 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2006
Rock Creek Non-Camp Stargazer Rock Camp 2006
Parkfield Bluegrass 2006 Oregon 2006
Bluegrass in the Foothills 2006    
Bullhead City, Bakersfield, Joshua Tree 2007 Frog Camp 2007
Eastern Sierra Journey 2007 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2007
Stargazer Rock Camp 2007 Roundup #1
(Mother Lode; Kings Canyon, Yosemite)
Bluegrass in the Foothills 2007    
Nevada-Arizona Hockey & Bluegrass 2008 Parkfield Bluegrass 2008
Frog Camp 2008 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2008
Stargazer Rock Camp 2008 Bluegrass in the Foothills 2008
Hobbs Grove Festival 2008     
Roundup 2009
Las Vegas, Mariposa, Table Mountain, Orange County
Frog Camp 2009 Southern Journey 2009
Parkfield Bluegrass 2009 Stargazer Rock Camp 2009
Bluegrass Tour 2009
Brown Barn, Plymouth, Hobbs Grove
Hensley Lake Camp
Mojave National Preserve & Havasu Bluegrass Roundup 2010
Hensley Reservoir, Mojave Preserve 2 & 3
Parkfield Bluegrass 2010 Lake Almanor & Mt. Lassen 2010
Las Vegas Expo Summergrass
   Brown Barn, Watsonville & Hobbs Grove
Roundup 2011
Mariposa, Hensley, Table Mountain
Frog Camp 2011
Parkfield Bluegrass 2011 Frank, Pat, Dick & Ted's Excellent Adventure
Northern Coast Journey 2011 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2011
Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival Chilkoot & Stargazer Rock Camp
Kings River & Brown Barn Bluegrass Festivals Hensley Camp 2011
Parkfield Bluegrass 2012 Four Squaw Leap Hikes
Northern Coast Journey 2012 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2012
Stargazer Rock Camp 2012 Bluegrass in the Foothills 2012
A 3-Event Weekend
Farmer's Market, Kings River Bluegrass, Antique Fair
2012 Las Vegas CAN AM Hockey Challenge
Fall Hikes
Finegold Trail; Bower Cave
Into Los Gatos Canyon
Silver Stick Tournament - Canada Sierra Foothills - Winter 2013
Finegold Trailhead, Hensley Lake, San Joaquin Gorge
Death Valley - Alabama Hills - Whitney Portal Sierra Foothills - Spring 2013
San Joaquin Gorge Hike, Big Creek Drive
Parkfield Bluegrass 2013 Shaver Crossing Station & Big Creek
Lake Almanor & Caribou Crossroads Mono Hot Springs
Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival A Wedding in Duluth
Sequoia Park Hiking Roundup 2013
Kings River Bluegrass, Buena Vista Peak Hike, Hensley Lake Camp, North Fork Mono Museum, White Rock Road, Hockey in Denver
2014 Winter Hikes
Millerton South Bay Trail, Clovis Trail, Hite's Cove Trail
San Joaquin Gorge Campout
Colorado Springs Hockey Tournament Lake Havasu Bluegrass
2014 Spring Hikes
Stockton Creek Preserve, San Joaquin River Trail, San Joaquin Gorge, Millerton Lake, Sycamore Creek, Buena Vista Peak Again
NORCAL Hockey Playoffs and Santa Cruz Visit
Greeley Hill Road Trip Parkfield Bluegrass 2014
Journey of 2014 Journey of 2014 Photos
Nelder Grove Hikes 2014 Sentinel Dome Hike
2014 Fall & Winter Hikes
San Joaquin River Trail South & North, Red Rock Canyon Nevada, San Joaquin South Again
California Flat Campout
Snow Day with the  Upshaw's   
Rambler Hikes 2015 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2015 Part 2
Adventures of 2015 - February to May
(Goofy Smith Flat, Coast Redwoods & Big Sur, Pine Flat, Finegold Trail, Edison Point Trail, Nelder Grove)
Adventures of 2015 - June to December
(Lewis Creek Trail, Kaiser Pass, Kaiser Pass Again, Taft Point, Kings River Bluegrass, Shaver Logging Road, San Joaquin River Trail, Lewis S Eaton Trail, San Joaquin River Gorge, Thanksgiving at the Gorge)
Lake Tahoe & Virginia City Parkfield Bluegrass 2015
Colorado Springs Cousin Convention 2015 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2015
Stargazer Rock Camp 2015 Grand Canyon & Arches National Parks
Adventures of 2016 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2016 Page 1
Adventures of 2016 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2016 Page 2
Adventures of 2016 Part 3 Rambler Hikes 2016 Page 3
Adventures of 2016 Part 4 A Pennsylvania Adventure
Adventures of 2016 Part 5 Parkfield Bluegrass 2016
Adventures of 2016 Part 6 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2016
Adventures of 2016 Part 7 Stargazer Rock Camp 2016
Adventures of 2017 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2017 Page 1
Adventures of 2017 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2017 Page 2
Adventures of 2017 Part 3 Rambler Hikes 2017 Page 3
Adventures of 2017 Part 4 Hiking and Hockey
Adventures of 2017 Part 5 Lake Almanor
Adventures of 2017 Part 6 Northern California Redwood Hike
Parkfield Bluegrass 2017 Stargazer Rock Camp 2017
Travel Blog 2017 (an experiment) Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks
Adventures of 2018 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2018 Page 1
Adventures of 2018 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2018 Page 2
Adventures of 2018 Part 3 Rambler Hikes 2018 Page 3
Adventures of 2018 Part 4 Parkfield Bluegrass 2018
Adventures of 2018 Part 5 Northern California Journey 2018
Adventures of 2018 Part 6
Adventures of 2019 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2019 Page 1
Adventures of 2019 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2019 Page 2
Utah National Parks Rambler Hikes 2019 Page 3
Adventures of 2019 Part 3 Parkfield Bluegrass 2019
Adventures of 2019 Part 4 Adventures of 2019 Part 5
Adventures of 2020 Part 1 Adventures of 2020 Part 5
Adventures of 2020 Part 2 Adventures of 2020 Part 6
Adventures of 2020 Part 3 Adventures of 2020 Part 7
Adventures of 2020 Part 4 Rambler Hikes 2020 Page 1
Adventures of 2021 Part 1 Adventures of 2021 Part 5
Adventures of 2021 Part 2
Adventures of 2021 Part 3 Rambler Hikes 2021 Page 1
Adventures of 2021 Part 4 Rambler Hikes 2021 Page 2
Adventures of 2022 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2022 Page 1
Adventures of 2022 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2022 Page 2
Adventures of 2022 Part 3 Rambler Hikes 2022 Page 3
Adventures of 2022 Part 4 Utah Parks
Adventures of 2023 Page 1 Rambler Hikes 2023 Page 1
Adventures of 2023 Page 2 Rambler Hikes 2023 Page 2
Dinosaur National Monument Rambler Hikes 2023 Page 3
Adventures of 2023 Page 3 Rambler Hikes 2023 Page 4
Adventures of 2024 Page 1 Rambler Hikes 2024 Page 1
Adventures of 2024 Page 2 Rambler Hikes 2024 Page 2
Mendocino Coast Rambler Hikes 2024 Page 3
Fresno Area Canal Walks Clovis Trail Walks
Butch's Blog Walker Family Trips
Parkfield Earthquake Kim & Morgan Brown Trips & Photos
Travel Report Menu Estel Home Page
Photo Albums Slide Shows
Laurie Lewis' High Sierra Hikes Email


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Updated May 4, 2022