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Saturday, April 6, 2013

Red Rock, Blue Sky

Continuing with our desert story... We saw one more sunrise from our plateau campsite before moving on. I loved how the pattern of shadows on the east-facing mesa and cliff were similar for sunrise and moonrise.
Later that day, we made a snap decision that we wanted to go explore some new territory. At moments like that one, we adore our Labmobile because our camp is mobile. We were ready to leave within less than a half hour.

I have admit that the bouncy, hot, and dusty drive to our next site left me feeling jaded. As we arrived in the "splendor" of the new area where we planned to camp, I commented that it looked like the kind of place that a fugative could hide for years without anyone ever finding him because no one would ever go there!

That's the nature of the desert for me. At first glance, I sometimes think it looks barren, inhospitable, and even ugly. Then, when I settle in and start looking at the world with a happy eye, I realize that it is spectacular.

We found a campsite down away from the road that felt like it was a million miles from civilization. Indeed, during the days that we ended up staying in this area, we heard only a couple of vehicles go by on the road.
Our new campsite was sandy, just like the previous one. Several of you asked how R looked when covered in red desert sand. In fact, we referred to him as  "brindle Lab" during our trip. The combination of black and red was wonderful.
But, I like him looking shiny best of all.
From our new campsite, there was a tough trail to mountain bike that took me along the base of a series of cliffs. Sometimes I rode with the Runner and the Duo, and sometimes I rode on my own. We never saw another person in this area. I keep emphasizing our solitude because friends have told me about the crowds at more popular desert destinations - like Moab.

In addition to being peaceful, our private playground was gorgeous.
The trail wound along, sometimes in the shadow of steep cliffs and sometimes curving around beautiful obstacles.
The word "boulder" takes on a whole new meaning in this part of Utah. Look at how this boulder dwarfed my bike.
Sometimes, I felt as if the boulders were closing in on me. I joked with the Runner that many of the boulders appeared to be perched precariously, ready to roll further away from the cliff. He commented that the boulders had merely "paused" in their downward tumble but had not "stopped". With that undoubtedly true point of view, it certainly is smarter to stay on the uphill side of them.
Back in camp, we lazed around during the afternoons. I sometimes played games with the dogs. Here, I captured Shyla pointing right at me, a variation on her "wave".
She's such a fun dog. Recently, I feel like she's finally understood that she will be part of our family forever. During the trip and since we've been home, she seems more confident and, to my surprise, even more affectionate than before. It's a wonderful evolution to be part of.


  1. Some VERY dramatic scenery. Just gorgeous. Nothing can compare to nature.

    XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy

  2. I am not sure I could ever be as adventurous as you and The Runner, but I sure do love seeing all the spectacular places you find:)

  3. love the last pic of the wave!!! she is really a beauty and has changed so much!! i've always enjoyed watching my adult adoptees come into their are both lucky to have each others love...

  4. I love that you take the time to capture these splendid photos with us. It feels like a gift from you to us.
    The Universe has really put on a show- and you were part of it.
    You- the runner, R and Shyla.
    thank you for giving to us.

  5. Shyla's "you" is so very cute! My feeling is like Kathies, I love the pictures but whooo, its all just too big for me!

    I am glad the four of you love it so much and feel right at home there!

    Cheers and hugs,

  6. What a beautiful place to explore and bond with one another--And nature too!

  7. Oh Shyla you are such a good girl. The desert colors are beautiful
    Benny & Lily

  8. What a dramatic place! I would so love to take Nola.
    Nola's Mom

  9. There is something playful about dusty R. And what wonderful photos you got. Make me wish MOM would take me sown south more often.

  10. Stunning photos, we all fade into a small speck against the mighty magnificence of nature such as you have shown us.Looks like R and Shyla had a great time too. Greetings from Jean

  11. To enjoy that first hand - you almost make me want to go camping! Beautiful!

  12. What Beautiful landscape...Amazing Pictures you made.
    Shyla is to sweet when she does that.
    Tyra is getting along well, about 15-17 Days the puppies will come

  13. The Runner is very astute "merely paused in their downward tumble" ~~~ means so many things.
    Res and blue such a beautiful contrast!

    thanks and cheers to Shyla!!


  14. The photograph under the text:

    "In addition to being peaceful, our private playground was gorgeous",

    is spectacular!! Wow.


  15. Lovely. Thankyou for sharing it with us.

  16. Another spectacular set of desert photos! Shyla was certainly having a great time!!

  17. What fabulous photos! We think we like you black instead of brindle, R!

    Love ya lots,
    Mitch and Molly

  18. What beautiful scenery. Love Shyla as a brindle!

  19. What a fantastic way to get away from it all! I'm glad you had the chance to go off the beaten path. It sounds like Shyla is growing up in a lot of ways! :)

  20. What a wonderful evolution to read about! That's often how it is with foster children, too. They are so full of uncertainty and so absent of trust, when you finally do make that connection, it's heavenly.

    You always bowl me over with your stunning red rock photos. Love your brindle R!


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