While I strongly believe Utah deserves to be explored for more than two days we had to move on.
Day 8, and in only the third state off the West Coast… there had to be another border crossed by the end of the day.
We headed towards Provo to take Rt 6 E to connect us to Hwy 70.
The smaller routes offer quite a drastic contrast to the scenery we had enjoyed approaching Salt Lake City on Hwy 80.
Besides the changes in landscape, it felt like we had driven off the planet.
At one point I picked up a phone call from my sister in New York and not hearing her well had the audacity to ask her if she was in a place with a bad reception… For all the spoiled Verizon brats out there, if you ever find yourself at a location that looks like this:
It COULD be YOU!
Route 6 runs right between Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National forest and Manti-La Sal National Forest. Needless to say, the views are quite enjoyable.
However, being surrounded by too much beauty may apparently impair your decision-making skills. Stopping in Price for gas we made a regrettable plan to stop for a lunch at the next inviting place down the road. Just in case you find yourself in Price, UT, there IS nothing “down the road”… For over 60 miles! If you are hungry, it feels like 160 miles… and if you keep talking about food… it feels like 260 miles.
Finding the Melon Vine food store and a little cafe in Green River will be remembered. Forever!
Now, if it wasn’t for the shot glasses with photos of Arches National Park staring at me at the coffee shop, we would have probably driven straight to Colorado.
But the pictures were so pretty and the park was kind of on the way…
We agreed to take a little detour. Most likely one of the best decisions we made on the trip!
There’s not enough superlative words to describe this place. Every step in this park is magical. Everything from the red sand you walk on to the top of the arches. The aura of time at Arches Park is indescribable. Knowing that American Indians used this area for thousands of years and being greeted in the parking lot by a raven, their symbol of metamorphosis, gave me chills.
Being surrounded by the sculpted rock scenery and having the opportunity to observe it at the sunset was an unforgettable experience.
Driving back to Route 70 via Scenic Byway US-128 added morespectacular views. The byway runs parallel to the Colorado River providing breathtaking views of the surrounding red sandstone cliffs
and passes a viewpoint for the red rock spires of the Fisher Towers set against the peaks of the La Sal Mountains. The scenery was picture perfect even at dusk.
A few miles before intersecting with Hwy 70 the road proceeds across open desert toward the ghost town of Cisco. The dark narrow road does not look like it will take you anywhere…It seemed more like a perfect place to shoot a horror flick.
However, it did take us to Interstate 70.
We made it to Fruita, Colorado. Not far from the border, but we crossed it.