Utah National Park Volunteers 2016 travel blog

Tiny people on the trail Inspiration Point




I left off last weekend before we saw the fireworks on the 4th. Our campsite is up on a small hill at the end of town and gave us the perfect view of the fireworks right from our 'front yard'. It starts to get dark about 9 o'clock but is really dark about 10. For early risers getting up the next day at 6am for work that was a late start.(I'm certain as I'm getting older I'm reverting to childhood bedtime) Especially for a little town like Panguitch with a population of 1600, they put on a great fireworks show. We oohed and ahhed through it all!

As I've mentioned Juanita who dog sits for Gracie, I'd like to introduce them to you. Juanita is 75 and her husband Joe is 82, newly weds who will have their first anniversary this month. They live most of the year in Pahrump which is just outside Las Vegas. Juanita has been volunteering at Red Canyon for 13 years and comes right around Easter when they open with snow still on the ground. Joe unfortunately has COPD and uses oxygen when they go to higher altitudes although he seems ok down here in Panguitch. They have rapidly become good friends.

As we finished our three-day work week yesterday, we did our chores in the afternoon and celebrated with a late night (10 o'clock) drive a little ways out of town to get in the real dark to look at the moon and stars. Coming back we realized it was just as dark at the drive into our campsite and we could have stayed here. But what I want to tell you about is how amazing the stars are out here. It's like the earth has a black bowl sitting on it and the bowl is filled with glitter just hanging down. The stars go all the way down to the horizon and are so bright all you can do is be amazed. Tonight some rangers are doing a program up at Red Canyon and will have telescopes for us to use to see planets and the moon.

Today was amazing. We went to Bryce Canyon again and hiked up Inspiration Point. It started out paved but the suspicious me said this is a trick and took one of my hiking poles anyway. Thank goodness I did as the paved quickly changed to packed gravel and the incline drastically increased. I should have known you can't be inspired in Utah until you are at the top of a mountain. Carol, the mountain goat, and Gracie practically skipped up to the top. I huffed and puffed and stopped often to breathe but made it to the top and I admit it was worth all the effort. They had passed me on their way back down but I persevered-- we can pretty much count on every hike taking me at least double what it takes Carol to complete. Honestly, I think Gracie would rather hike with me: she'd get to go a lot slower.

We picniced at Bryce and went to the Fairyland overlook....another beautiful view. I've attached photos of the Inspiration hike and the Fairyland view. See if you can find the ant size people way down on the Inspiration trail.

Then on to my turf. We went to Tropic to my favorite espresso shop with free WiFi and uploaded all my photos to my dropbox and to the travel journal post.

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