Wednesday, November 21, 2007
A Change In Plans
Our original plans for Utah included several days at a remote campsite in the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park. To be more specific, we were going to stay at back country site called "Horsehoof" (of all things). The problem was that the site is situated deep within the back country and requires that you either hike in (we weren't prepared for that) or traverse a rather serious 4wd trail known as "Elephant Hill" to get there. Our intentions were good, but one look at the weather report (forecast was for rain) and a good, long look at the first section of the trail sent us looking for, well, shall we say, less cumbersome adventures.
I had planned to spend my time there in relative seclusion (few tourists visit due to the difficult access) photographing in an area of the back country known as "Chesler Park." The place has been described as a photographers paradise, and getting into it will be at the top of my list next time I visit, even if I should have to hike in. But as we surveyed our situation at the gates to Elephant Hill (arriving in the park with only a few hours before sunset didn't help) we all decided that it was best to head back to Moab and Negro Bill, where we couldn't get rained-in if the weather turned foul.
So a new plan was hatched. One that would keep us safe regardless of the weather and allow to spend more time in Arches National Park than we had originally planned. On the way out of the Needles section we stopped at a site known as "Newspaper Rock." Hundreds of years of signs and symbols have been pecked into the patina of the cliff walls here, and no one has any good idea of what the symbols mean, when they were created, or even exactly who left them.
The first of today's pics was literally taken roadside as we were leaving the Park. The second shot is from NR, and it's one you wont see in the guidebooks. It was taken to the left of the main panel as I was trying to show the whole environment rather that just the rock art.
Next stop, Arches NP.