Just Another Day in Paradise
by Carol White
Another beautiful day here in paradise!! We were up early and heading for the Park. The Black Canyon of the Gunnison is not the deepest canyon in the US or the narrowest, but it is one of the most spectacular for the combination of factors, and that the Gunnison River drops so precipitously through the crevice. It is much like the Grand Canyon – you are just driving along this mesa and all of a sudden, there it is. With my fear of heights, I was a nervous wreck the entire time in the park. The road runs right along the rim much of the time, and it is awesome -- but sooooo scary!
We took some time to just enjoy the serene beauty – and the spring wildflowers that were popping up everywhere we turned. As many of you know, I really enjoy photography, and the wild flowers were a fun subject. The Canyon, on the other hand, was really difficult to get a shot of, even with a wide angle and telephoto lens. I tried several combinations, but only captured a portion of this spectacular canyon.
In the parking lot, we ran into another Class B camper, and stopped to chat with them for awhile. They were just finishing their tour of the parks and assured us that we would be fine – even on the Crescent Junction highway that descends into Zion National Park. Apparently anything much bigger than we are has to have a special escort (think money!) or they can’t use the highway at all, it has some very sharp turns, but is spectacular.
As we were heading for town, we spied a group of bicyclists having a great time on the “slick rock” formations so famous for bicycling here. That looked like a little more “adventure” than we were ready for right now.
We drifted into town and had dinner at a fun little Mexican restaurant, El Bandito Grille. The saying on the wall read: "There are no cans in our Mexi-can!" Good food. And you could buy a beer! (Remember, we're back in Utah -- the land of strange liquor laws!). The campground that we chose, the Riverside Oasis, was very private with nice grassy sites, the river nearby and lots of trees. A perfect ending to our beginning day of the Grand Circle.