Today was the moment when our journey officially became too scenic. We had been working with the idea of leaving Zion and traveling along Highway 12 in Utah in order to get to our next set of reservations. As we puzzled through where we might stay, how far we might travel each day, etc., I started to get really tense.
Here’s the thing, Scenic Highway 12, by all accounts and pictures online, appears to be one of the most breathtaking drives anywhere. And parts of it seem to be breathtaking in a literal sense for anyone not comfortable with sheer drop offs on both sides of the road and no guard rails. Now, Richard is still supposed to be working during most of this time, so we were both imagining what it would look like for him to be simultaneously disregarding the views, talking me down from a panic attack, and discussing the finer points of coding with his colleagues.
Ultimately, we decided that this was trying to do too much and that the primary objectives of this trip are already sufficiently ambitious. So we headed up an also scenic, but perhaps not heart attack inducing, Highway 89 to 70. Interstate 70 will then be our friend for most of the eastbound miles. This gets us cell service so Richard can work and I can not freak out, plus a lot more options of places to stay without reservations. I promise, one day we will do the whole Highway 12, 5 national parks in a row, Hoggsback, Hell’s Backbone, thing. But not right now.
Richard got to begin the day by riding up to the Zion tunnel, where I met him and dropped him off again on the other side of the tunnel. This road is beyond what I can put into writing, as it was the last time we were here. On a sad note, we appear to have lost Richard’s bike post and saddle, probably because it was set down on the tongue back at the Valley of Fire and lost along the road somewhere. Oops.
At the end of the park road, I picked him up again and we headed toward 89. Yeah, what a much more relaxing drive it was. Still plenty beautiful and we waved to Bryce Canyon as we scooted past it. We checked out a state park that might have been a nice place to stay, but it was super windy and there were no apparent water spigots around.
So we kept on until we got to Fremont Indian State Park. There happened to be one site available, with full hookups even, in the Sam Stowe Campground. And guess what, with the direction we’re going, we can afford to stay two nights. This means no hitching up in the morning. Bliss. The park is rich with interpretive trails and petroglyphs. They have a nice Visitor Center and hiking trails. I’d recommend coming here, but be forewarned that it is right next to the highway. The other campground is farther from the road and the sites are nice and private.
This turned out to be a great recharge spot, and I’m not just talking about Dory’s battery. Richard got in a solid day’s work and I went into town to do a little shopping.
On the downside, I lost a significant chunk of my life today in the pursuit of uploading photos via Walmart WiFi. I would honestly have been ok with that, except for the fact that all photos from the past 6 days uploaded in basically random order. So for me to put them in the posts, I had to sift through dozens of thumbnails, matching them to the sequence on my phone. I’m fairly frustrated with WordPress because I had looked into this before we left and got assurance from an online chat person that I could do this all offline from the iPad app and upload posts (with pictures) when I had service. This is so not the case. So, from here on out, I will likely be posting very asynchronously, or will be including very few (or no) photos until we get back home. I can upload everything then, so you’ll have to promise to come back in August. Either that, or Richard will write me a program and sell it to WordPress for a million dollars. Then we can retire.
Total miles: 140.9, 19.2 mpg (wind at our backs), 3 hours 55 min. This campground has 8 full hookup sites, nice bathroom. The other campground, Castle Rock Campground, has 30 sites with no hookups, some pull through, some back in, one nice bathroom, one vault toilet bathroom. No service for ATT here, but 1-3 bars LTE for Verizon.