Sunday, April 20, 2008

Spring is in full bloom!

I just had to show you my tulips in bloom! I'm so proud and excited because this is the first time I've ever had my own yard, and I'm not really a green thumb (most plants I have end up dead), so it's so great to see these coming up in full force!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Ford Escape

Yesterday we traded the Kia and bought a 2005 Ford Escape. It's in excellent condition and only has 25,000 miles on it. I love it and am excited to take it into the mountains. It has a smart 4WD system that allows it to determine when it should go into 4WD. That's so great for me. And the best part is that the driver's seat adjusts back and forth AND up and down. I don't have to use my pillow anymore!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

On the Way to Moab, UT

Driving to Moab we had to go through the Paradox Valley in western Colorado. It's called the Paradox Valley because the valley runs east and west, yet there's a river in it that runs north and south - a paradox.
We spotted this house actually built into the mountain. Literally, the roofs and walls of this house ARE the mountain. The ultimate protection from the elements!

The La Sal Mountains peeking over.
Some interesting red rock formation we saw along the way. This is Utah in the flesh.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Arches National Park

(Any image can be enlarged by clicking it)

Arches National Park is only 3 miles north of Moab.
The park has great sandstone monoliths EVERYWHERE. This is one we saw while driving through the front portion.
This is called the "Balancing Rock."

On the hike to see the Delicate Arch Mike saw this arch and had to crawl up to it.

Behind me is the "Fiery Furnace." You can't hike within it without a guide or a hiking permit because it is a labyrinth of dead-end canyons.

This is me going into the trail that will take you to three separate arches. The beginning of the trail was a path between two large walls of rock.

Tunnel Arch

Pine Tree Arch - You can see Mike just barely to the left. Remember to click on the picture if you want to see it larger.

Landscape Arch

Utah's wildlife - the Collared Lizard.

Ute Indian Petroglyphs

This huge slickrock face was where we had to hike up (and down) to get to Delicate Arch. It was much steeper than it looks. You can see some people at the bottom of the face and you can see our car in the WAY back (you might have to click on it).

This is what Arches National Park uses for trail markers.

On the way to Delicate Arch...

Delicate Arch is actually at the top of this wind and erosion-formed "bowl." You can see the La Sal Mountains in the back.

The famous Delicate Arch.

Canyonlands (Island in the Sky)

Canyonlands National Park is southwest of Moab. It's actually three different sections, divided by the Colorado and Green Rivers. We went to the top section, called 'Island in the Sky.'
This was the first short hike we took to Mesa Arch.

Right under the arch was the edge. It literally dropped off, quite sharply. This was the view.

Here I am reading about the Green River Overlook. The signs were great for pointing out the separate landforms.

This picture cracks me up. That canyon is much farther down and away than it looks.

We took this great hike called Aztec Butte. It took you on the top of a butte that held some Pueblo graneries. The Indians made these graneries in the butte to store the seeds they gathered.

This is me, on the "trail" around the edge of the butte.

Okay, I don't look it, but I was so scared at this point. Mike decided brillantly to forego the rest of the butte trail and just scamper down the side. It was fine, of course, because sandstone is not slick at all, but it was still unnerving.

This is a great picture of Candlestick Butte.

This is Buck Canyon behind us. It was an great expanse of canyons and buttes.

Reading the sign again. This time for Grand View Point. I've never seen the Grand Canyon, but I can't imagine it was much more amazing than this. The Grand View Point is the canyon in which the Colorado and Green River meet.

A tree took this picture. :) The Grand View Point canyon is behind us.

Looking out over Grand View Point - Mike is much more adventurous than me.

Um, not exactly what you're thinking....

I promised not to tell his secret....

God created such beautiful country for us to enjoy!

to Carbondale

Mike's soccer girls played in Carbondale this week as well. The school's field had the most spectacular view of this mountain. I've never seen a field with such a view!
On the way we drove by this river. We think it's name might be Crystal River, but we're not sure. There was still quite a bit of snow in this part of Colorado.

On the way to Carbondale we had to go over McClure Pass. It had quite a view as well. It was a cloudy day, so many of the clouds were lower than the mountains. I love it when that happens.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Douglas Pass

Here is Mike practicing passes and shots with the girls before the game at Rangely. I think he's showing off his footwork.

Several minutes after I took this picture Terrica (blonde in blue jersey) tore several ligaments in her ankle and is now out for the rest of the season. :(
Rangely is north of Grand Junction, about three hours away from Montrose (in a bus). On the way you have to go over Douglas Pass, which is a winding road with about 35 switchbacks. It's top point is at an elevation of 8240 feet. It's quite spectacular (and scary) at the top.
The bus driver actually stopped on the road at the top so the girls and Mike could take these pictures. Yes, I was on the bus as well, but luckily I was sitting on the side of the bus that was on the inside of the road.