Friday, April 19, 2013

Bluff, AZ–Part 1

There are so many things to do within an hour or 2 of Bluff, AZ that I am going to break this into multiple parts.

I had thought about staying at Devil’s Canyon campground (a National Forest campground with no hookups), but I decided to make reservations at a full hookup site a while back and I am glad I did.  We had 2 nights below freezing, but most days were in the 60’s and 70’s.  

On the day I drove from Cottonwood, AZ to Bluff, UT it was very windy.  So much so that I had decided if it got too bad I would pull over and wait it out.  I had paid attention to the weather forecast and since they called for the wind to get worse in the afternoon, I left very early and missed the worst of the wind (55 mph gust).   The dust was blowing everywhere (and so were the tumbleweeds!).  It also rained just enough to make a mess on everything.

But there was some beautiful scenery on the way --

The above picture was taken from my campsite and shows how much dust is in the sky!  This was the actual color, not taken through a tinted window!  I didn’t notice until the next day, but I think my RV was dirtier than it has ever been. Below is part of the hood and front grill (and me) --

My first full day, the weather was not great, so I did laundry.  But I also went to the nearby Sand Island BLM area.  This is a campground on the San Juan River, but also has some easy to get to petroglyphs.  They (whoever that is) have estimated these petroglyphs to be 300 – 3000 years old.  In looking at the panels, I could see some that were very faded, which appeared to be the older ones. 

At first glance some of the ones below looked like space alien masks, but then I noticed very faint heads on top of the masks (?).  I really enjoyed trying to figure out what the pictures were and what the artist was trying to say. 

The one below was one of my favorites, a man with a vortex head.  It was very faint as the petina had redeveloped over the scratched in area.

While in Blanding doing laundry, I also visited the Edge of the Cedars State Park Museum.  It had snowed the night before in the mountains and I love seeing the mountains with snow on them!  I tried to be creative and get the mountains with snow and the ruins, but they are hard to make out.  If you enlarge it, you can see it better!!

The museum consisted of the ruins above and a large indoor museum of pottery found mostly in the area.  I liked the one below.  It’s a Bighorn Sheep Effigy pot made A.D. 900 - 1150.

One day, I visited the Butler Wash Ruins.  These ruins were built by the Anasazi Indians about 700 years ago.  The hike there was fun and beautiful.  Below is the canyon, with several of the alcoves housing the ruins.

On that same day, I saw the Moki Dugway for the first time.  I had read about this and knew I wanted to see it, but I didn’t realize that it was just a section of a regular road.  The road leading to the Dugway was paved and had a 55 MPH speed limit.  I wondered why my GPS was saying it was going to take me so long to get where I was going.  I found out!!  The road changed to dirt/gravel and steep grades, with quite a few switchbacks and a speed limit of 15. 

Much of the road was right on the edge of the cliff, as you can see in the picture below--

After I got down “the hill”, I turned around and took a picture of the sign and the area I just went down.  It drops about 1200 feet in about 3 miles. 

Unfortunately I got a cold (or as I now believe a sinus infection), so a couple of days I didn’t do much (I had a fever of almost 102 one day – that’s not fun!).  I am still not 100%, but am much better!

1 comment:

  1. Love the petroglyphs! Vortex man is awesome. Must have been a petroglyph superhero! Hope you're recovered fully.