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Thursday, June 2, 2016

A Peaceful Desert Sojourn

In one way, our recent desert trip was different from most of our trips. R wasn't allowed to walk for longer than 10 minutes at a time. Moreover, we are not comfortable with leaving a dog alone in camp, even inside the van.

Because we didn't want to skip the trip, we took a "tag team" approach to recreation. The Runner would get out early for a desert run. That suited him because he doesn't like running in warm weather.

After he returned from his run, Shyla and I would head out for a mountain bike ride. After an entire winter of riding my snow bike that has tires almost 5" wide, my regular mountain bike felt so nimble and fast!

From K's Rock, Shyla and I headed to a lookout point that we visit every time we camp in this spot. It's a long climb to get to the cliff-side view down at the desert floor - about an hour and twenty minutes of climbing straight up a rocky hillside.

When we first arrived at the top, we had it to ourselves. Look at how confident and proud Shyla looked when sitting at the top!

I took some photos of the beautiful view. Look at the red cliffs and towers in the distance.

Me and my girl, sitting on a 2000' cliff!

I just can't get over how relaxed Shyla is in so much of life now (as long as it doesn't involve a city or crowds!). She's a wonderful trail dog. I love sharing adventures with her!

Soon, our peaceful respite atop the cliff came to a crashing end. A group of rowdy kids arrived, and they started throwing things off the cliff. I couldn't bear to watch, and I feared that Shyla might bolt out of my grasp to try to chase what they were throwing. I also feared for anyone hiking at the base of the cliff. We bolted back down the hill!

As soon as we arrived back in camp, I'd work on PT exercises with R (he had 3-5 sessions per day plus 5 short walks per day), and the Runner would be free to go climb on the boulders while I puppy-sat. I was perfectly happy to take care of R and snooze in the warm sun for the afternoon!

We always took one of R's 10 minute walks just before sunset, and we'd sit at a small vista point for a little while. That's the slender west end of K's Rock behind him.

Then, Shyla and I would wait for those last few minutes before sunset so I could get my "golden" photos of her, where her fur glowed red in the setting sun.

We decided not to travel too much from one campsite to another so that R could just relax and heal. We stayed at K's Rock for a few days before moving on, settling into a routine of running/biking, R's PT exercises, and plenty of snoozing. 

It was approaching a full moon so I took the opportunity on one of the first nights when the moon had already set to capture star trails in a very dark sky. Later in the trip, all my star photos included the bright light of a full moon. That's K's rock in the photo.
It was a great trip! Tomorrow, I hope to share photos of some of the amazing flowers we saw!


  1. R looks really happy. It is so nice to get out and smell all the smells. Hanging in the sunshine with your sweeties sounds amazing!!

  2. What a very beautiful place and your photos are amazing!! As always:)

  3. Such a beautiful spot! You look like a happy puppy in your picture, R☺

  4. I started to sweat a little at "an hour and twenty minutes of climbing straight up a rocky hillside"...gosh, your legs must be like steel!
    You know, I relate to Shyla's feelings about cities and crowds, and I'll bet my idea of what constitutes either one is similar to hers, also. She's lucky to have you as a buffer - or a shield, sometimes - between herself and what could be am immobilizing level of tension.
    I'm so glad all four of you had such a revitalizing and healing time :)

  5. What a beautiful site for R to continue recovery!!

  6. You know I love the desert. How awful those inconsiderate people! We spent one night at Lake Powell returning from Arizona this week. People are rude, and obnoxious.

  7. What a special place
    Lily & Edward

  8. We are sure glad to see R enjoying an out n' about!

  9. Wonderful that the whole family could go! SHE being a retired teacher hates seeing kids arrive anywhere peaceful.

  10. I love the area you go to KB; glad there weren't any further issues with the kids. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Thanks for this gorgeous post! We're so grateful to be able to share a bit of your trip with all four of you! So glad R seems to be healing nicely—and Shyla is gforgeous as ever.
    THos kids would have scared the heck out of me.

  12. What a fabulous and relaxing trip!!


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