Gedding Us a Beer in Moab…and the Fruita Tra

Trip Start Jul 03, 2009
Trip End Aug 16, 2009

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Flag of United States  , Utah
Thursday, July 9, 2009

We started today in Page, Arizona and ended it over 500 miles later in Moab, Utah. And although we had a rough start (our Starbucks worker was so slow that I actually grew a coffee tree and learned how to brew my own blend before we were served), I can say without a doubt that this was the single best day of driving I've ever had in my life. Utah is truly beautiful country.

We began the day heading west, and last night’s vermillion cliffs greeted us for more of the journey—hundreds of feet high with amazing colored striations throughout, and vast fields of boulders at their base. As we headed north and east, we met up with Utah’s highway 12 and nearly every type of scenery one could imagine. From green pastures with meandering streams to bright red rock canyons to huge stretches of white rock with not a plant in sight, around every turn there was a whole new world. Around midday, we started climbing hills and then mountains and finally found ourselves cruising on the crest of hills dropping off on either side of the car hundreds of feet.

We pulled into the tiny town (although I use that term generously) of Boulder, UT and stumbled across an amazing little restaurant—the Burr Trail Inn--just off the side of the road. Just when you think your meal is going to be fried, fried, and fried, you come across an organic eatery that sources as much of its produce as locally as possible. We had Jasmine rice cakes, fresh gazpacho, chicken in a caper sauce an amazing fresh burger with a perfectly fried egg on top. If you ever find yourself in Utah, go here!

An hour later, we’re in for the heartbreak of the trip. I’d been buttering MB up for all of the national parks on our trip with the promise of a one she couldn’t help but love. Capitol Reef park is famous for its Fruita Orchards, a holdover from its past as a Mormon town. The trees bloom throughout the year, and we were led to believe one might wander through this wonderland any day of the summer picking among its delights. Not so. Turns out if we wanted to come back in a week, we could pick some peaches—until then, we had to suffice with some of the most amazing red rock features of the trip.

On to Moab through utter emptiness. Open plains—at one point 40 minutes without seeing another car. 30 minutes of white, red and purple sand hills punctuated by ATV tracks, and finally Moab – a green valley in the midst of a red canyon. Oh, and Moab means another guest star – Geddes Golay.  As always, it was great to see Geddes and hear about his life here (it sounds wonderful, and we really thank him for getting us on to a booked tour through Fiery Furnace in Arches national park.  More on this tomorrow.)
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