Trip Start Mar 12, 2011
Trip End Dec 15, 2011

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Flag of United States  , Utah
Sunday, October 23, 2011

Set off early from Cedar City, almost as the day broke. We had quite a way to go to Bryce Canyon, made worse by the fact that the main road across was blocked by a rock fall 2 months ago, which took out 100 odd yards of road. So the road is closed!
Went North up the 15 to Parowan, then across country . Impressive views, but with the gradient at 13%, it was steep. Got up to 10500 ft above sea level, where there was snow on the ground. In one of the fields we saw the overhead irrigation going, but it was so cold that the water had frozen on the fence and the equipment. Passed some great log cabins  along the way. There are loads of Americans withRV's and boats and things - the recession is obviously not affecting a lot of people. Spoke to a guy when we were enjoying a coffee after buying our Subway lunch. He was driving a 10 tonne RV, pulling his car behind it. And there are loads of them.
Made our way to Bryce, and went into the park. First stop waas Sunset View, which was where Gordon first showed us the canyon. My reaction this time was exactly the same as last time - "Wow!" Its a canyon same as all the other canyons, but this one is filled with hoodoo's, which are pillars or columns where the surrounding material has been eroded by water and ice. There's a resemblance to the Chinese Terracotta army. The Navajo say that it was a tribe of bad people, who were turned to stone, and it looks like rows of people. But they are a few hundred feet high. We spent a bit of time going on the Navajo Trail, walking down into the canyon, amongst the hoodoo's. Only went down about 500 ft, but it was awe inspiring. This has to be my favourite area in the Utah and nearby parks. We also drove along the road to the end, and stopped off at a number of the other viewpoints, but the only other one that I really loved was the Bryces Bridge. Altho this is actuallly an Arch. A bridge is created by river water eroding the hole, whereas this was again caused by water freezing and expanding which breaks the surface of the stone.
Left there and made our way to Panguitch, where we stopped at the Canyon Lodge, very pleasant Motell, and the receptionist, Michelle, is very friendly. Advised us where to go for dinner, so off we went. Only to find it was closed (Sunday!) So we walked along, asking a couple of people where to go. Eventually finished up in a cafe attached to a petrol station - what a comedown for Sunday dinner!
Oh, well, a great day so I wont let a mediocre meal spoil it.

Max Height 10493, total climbed 11194 ft Miles travelled 173

Martin's mountain moment:
This is getting embarassing - we are having too much fun to regard this as a struggle against time and the elements.Stanley got us over the 10500 foot summit which I think compares to anything we achieved in Mongolia.On the way we came across a lot of characters wearing dayglo jackets whilst driving pick up trucks.Turns out they were hunters who wear the colours in order to alert other people roaming around with guns.Wait until the deer find out that all they have to do is wear orange reflective vests and they'll be safe.
Absolutely no point in trying to explain the phenomenon of Bryce Canyon - the photos will do that.
We,or rather Stanley,were a great attraction and allowed us to meet up wityh many friendly people and the car was an immediate ice breaker. We found ourselves in conversation immediately on all the things wrinklies  talk about.So a big hello to Charlie and Deena and Jim ang Margo.All of us agreed that people retired at the wrong end of their lives - they should spend the first 25 years having a leisurely time and then work till they dropped.
We met up also with Fabrice and Stephanie ,but had not passed them a note of our blog address.- they may find us anyway.Having thought about it over the last day or so,I think it may have been an idea to put the web address on the car somewhere.
Roger and I were pleased that we had descended to the bottom of the canyon and then been able to manfully stride back up the top.It did get a bit chilly at the bottom.Stanley still rolling along - heading North tomorrow so we need to move on,although the next day or so  is going to see temperatures plummet.

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Keith Vandewark on

We are the people you met at Bryce and I was amused by the sound of Stanley's horn.
It was great meeting the two of you! Wish we had more time to talk. Will continue to read more of your adventures.
Best wishes for the remainder of your journey.

Keith & Pat Vandewark, Rob Lane, & Sue D'Angelo

sara on

all i did today was take the kids to a farm and terrify isaac with the halloween themed tractor ride, am feeling very unadventurous.
but we do now have a blue not the original beige carpet after bethan's modifications today...

mother nature is wonderful (the american landscape, not the play farm)

daniel's feeling your absence in the planning fireworks dept- don't think he wants to have any without his dad!!

Tim on

Hi Martin and Roger. Wow indeed! Amazing pictures. What a great place. I am very envious. I hope you manage to keep warm on your next leg. Best wishes Tim C

Josh and Mary on

Best day yet on the blog. Photos are really amazin'. Glad to see you're making lots of friends. Any Canadians? Glad you avoided the rockfalls.

Fiona on

You've got loads of comments! everyone wants to hear about your adventures. Miss you Dad!

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